The Dolphins’ Home Field Advantage
The way this Patriots team is built and the fact that the Dolphins’ best player, Xavien Howard, is out for the game will help Josh Gordon the most. The one issue is the game is in Miami, a place that always gives New England trouble.
Just in the past 5 years, the team is 1-4 in Miami. Historically the Patriots have not played well at Miami Gardens. The temperature is also expected to be relatively high too which may affect the game as well. The loss in Jacksonville is an example of the heat playing a factor against New England.
Bill Belichick won’t use the weather as an excuse, but we all know since 200, the Patriots have struggled in the heat. Former Patriot Tedy Bruschi said as much on ESPN when asked about why this team struggles in Miami.
Built for Success
The Patriots right now are just built for success. They are extremely healthy, have top 10 players in many categories including one of the best cornerback duos right now. Stephon Gilmore is questionable although Is likely to play, as he flew with the team for this matchup. The Patriots should be able to come out of this with a win. Look for Sony Michel and the running backs to have a big day.
New England should look to set up the run game early, using all three backs. Rotating the running backs will keep them from cramping up and running out of steam from the heat. Tom Brady will be able to take advantage of the injury riddled Dolphins. The running game will set up play action passes, and more defenders in the box.
The Patriots come in as heavy favorites despite recent history, and I don’t think it will be a blowout. Miami has played well at home this year, at 6-6 they will be looking for revenge from week 4. The rash of injuries to this Dolphins team, along with New England coming in almost at 100% will be the difference today. Not the heat.
The Patriots are really starting to look better on offense, defense and are only missing one player. The Patriots will win the AFC East again today, for the 10th year in a row. The players will get up for this “hat and T-shirt game” as they continue to try and get that number one seed.
(Patriots 28 Miami 17)