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Sunday Morning Bloody Mary: Dolphins vs Patriots Pre-Game Thread; lots of key inactives on both sides

Good morning, everyone. I hope you all had an outstanding New Year's celebration. Now it's time for the final time this season to sit back and watch the Dolphins take the field. Today they close out the season up in New England.

This is your pre-game thread. Kickoff is at 1:00 today and our game thread will be up at 12:45. Until then, all relevant pre-game news will be posted here.

Weekly Inactives and Starting Lineup Updates

We already know that Karlos Dansby will not play today. Neither will cornerback Nolan Carroll, who did not make the trip with the team yesterday due to his concussion.

The seven inactives, officially, are Nolan Carroll, Lydon Murtha, Anthony Fasano, Ryan Baker, Chris Baker, Julius Pruitt, Mike Rivera, and Allen Barbre. Not sure why the Dolphins promoted WR Julius Pruitt off of the practice squad only to have him listed as inactive today.

The Dolphins will start Pat McQuistan at RT today in place of Murtha. That will force Richie Incognito to LG and make Joe Berger start at center - which is a shame as we could have seen Incognito start at center and face off with Vince Wilfork.

At tight end, the Dolphins will start Mickey Shuler in place of the injured Fasano.

For the Patriots, Wes Welker and Deion Branch will not play. Neither will TE Aaron Hernandez or pass rusher Tully Banta-Cain.

Weather Update

As far as the temperature goes in Massachusetts this time of the year, the Dolphins couldn't ask for much more. It's in the mid 40s today. There will be some showers in the area - particularly early on. But it'll clear up as the game goes on. And the rain could even be out of the area before kickoff.

This sure beats those 30 degree snow days that the Dolphins could have seen in January up in New England.

Matty's Player to Watch

Brandon Marshall. He made some interesting comments this past week - and Chad Henne had an interesting response. Now I'm very interested in seeing how these two perform today. Marshall has a shot at breaking the franchise record for receptions, too. So he's going to want the ball as much as possible. What happens if Henne doesn't get it to him early and often?