The Miami Dolphins (10-5) look to clinch the playoffs for the first time since 2016 as they travel to take on the Buffalo Bills on Sunday.
Our 305 Sports Dolphins team gave their predictions on if Miami can earn a road victory.
Jamie Bahamas, Dolphins Lead Writer (Season Record: 11-4)
27-20 Miami: Here we go. It doesn’t get any bigger than this. The final game of the season and the Bills and the Dolphins are looking to put an exclamation mark on their 2020 season. Although, Miami’s statement would be much bolder. A Dolphins win puts them in the playoffs as the top Wildcard Team.
The Bills are looking to be the #2 seed in the AFC, sweep the Dolphins for a second straight year, and solidify their claim as the new big dogs of the AFC East. Miami has too much to play for to lose this game. In the last few years, they have had a miracle and some magic. Today, they complete the dream and win on their way to the playoffs.
Michael Yero, Dolphins Writer (Season Record: 13-2)
27-13 Miami: With the playoffs at stake, I expect the Dolphins to continue coming out strong definitely and the offense to get some solid production from its running game. That said, we should see a maximum effort game for Miami, whereas Buffalo seems to be in the drivers seat and unwilling to risk injury of their top players – Josh Allen, Stefon Diggs.
Anthony Yero, Dolphins Writer (Season Record: 12-3)
24-13 Miami: While this game means the world to the Dolphins, it means much less to the Bills. Buffalo has already clinched their spot in the playoffs and should be doing all they can to prevent injuries. Josh Allen will likely see the field for a few possessions, then it’s up to Matt Barkley to lead the way for the Bills. The same goes for the rest of their lineup. Thus, Miami will be versing a second-unit throughout most of the match.
Scott Cusick, Dolphins Writer (Season Record: 10-5)
20-17 Miami: In their first meeting this season, Miami and Buffalo were in a shootout in which Allen outlasted Dolphins quarterback Ryan Fitzpatrick to win 31-28. Things look much different in the AFC East now as the Bills have wrapped up the division title for the first time in 25 years. Miami is in a win and in situation for a playoff spot. New England is out of the playoffs with a losing record for the first time since 2000. The Bills could elect to rest starting players or only play them briefly for a series or a quarter. Depending on the Bills defense, which has been playing its best ball as of late, the Dolphins may still have it difficult even against backups.
Kyle Murphy, Dolphins Writer (Season Record: 10-4)
34-24 Miami: Last season, the Dolphins ruined the Patriots’ chances at a bye with “nothing to play for” in the last week of the 2019-20 season. This year, it’s a win and you’re in situation. And I trust Brian Flores in Week 17.
Gabe Glassman, Dolphins Writer (Season Record: 5-1)
34-27 Miami: There are many ways Miami can make it to the playoffs for the first time since 2016, but the easiest way is to win. With Fitzpatrick’s recent positive COVID-19 test, Tua Tagovailoa will be without his mentor and mid-series coach. If the Dolphins can hold their ground on defense facing off against Josh Allen and Dtefon Diggs, all Miami needs to do is be their best on the offensive side and ultimately win the game.
Austin Ramos, Dolphins Writer (Season Record: 8-2)
27-23 Miami: With simply a win on Sunday and Miami is locked into the 5th seed. However, if Miami were to lose, they would need either the Ravens, Colts or Browns to lose. With most of those teams facing other teams that have secured a playoff spot or are out of the race entirely, the Dolphins need to perform at a high level to ensure a win today against the Bills.
Finding the perfect balance of keeping players healthy for the playoffs and still competing will not only determine their success Sunday, but also their chances in the playoffs if they secure a spot. Buffalo has won the AFC East and currently sits at the No. 2 seed with the Pittsburgh Steelers tied but at the 3 spot. Though I do not expect the Bills starters to play the entire game they will play a good part of it. Miami wins and gets into the playoffs for the first time since 2016.