It is no surprise to any NFL fan anywhere that again the AFC playoffs will have to go through the New England Patriots at home in Foxboro. Each and every year at this time, the Patriots are in the playoffs and they are usually the favorite to win yet another Super Bowl. Tom Brady and his teammates are set to make another postseason run, and to get to the Super Bowl in Houston this year. The Patriots had to finish the season against their conference rival, the Miami Dolphins, in Miami. It is the first time the Dolphins have made it back to the playoffs in years and the team is coming into the postseason hot. The Patriots gave them a real sense of reality on the last Sunday of the regular season though, as they dominated the Dolphins all over the field.
Maybe the Dolphins were taking the game off, as they had already clinched a playoff spot in the postseason. If they want any chance in making a run this postseason, they will have to play a lot better than they did at home to end the season. New England dominated the Dolphins from the start on Sunday, crushing Miami 35-14, on New Year’s afternoon. After the devastating loss, the Dolphins head into the playoffs as the sixth seed, and will head to Pittsburgh in the first round to face a hot Steelers team. The Dolphins defense did not even look like they got the memo that they had a game against the Patriots to end the season.
The Dolphins defense got dominated right out of the gate. As soon as the Patriots touched the ball, they were moving it at will against the Dolphins. If the Dolphins have any chance of beating the Steelers in the first round, they will have to take a long hard look in the mirror this week and realize that now every team is really good, and the smallest mistake can mean a loss at any time. So why is there any reason to believe Miami will be better on the road against Antonio Brown, Ben Roethlisberger and Le’Veon Bell? I think at this point, every Dolphins fan is scratching their heads and wondering, ‘Ok can we win a game in the playoffs this postseason?’
It is not clear if the Dolphins’ starting quarterback, Ryan Tannehill, will be able to play at Pittsburgh this coming weekend. Although that should not even matter at this point, as the biggest issues they had against a strong New England team came on the defensive side of the ball for Miami. “I feel great about the defense,” Ndamukong Suh insisted. “We been through a lot of tough times, a lot of good times and I think we’ve been in every single situation in this particular season so we got to be prepared for whoever we have and get ready to go.” They will have to step it up big time this weekend if they want to advance and get another shot at the Patriots in Foxboro.