The Miami Dolphins will face off against the New England Patriots this afternoon, opening their AFC East campaign for the 2016 season, a campaign that will not end until these two teams face off again in Week 17. Today’s game, at the Patriots’ Gillette Stadium, has the Patriots listed as a 6.5 point favorite. Can Miami come out on top when the final gun sounds today?
It has been seven years since that last happened for the Dolphins in Foxboro, but this game could provide a great chance to end that streak. The Patriots will be playing without quarterback Tom Brady and tight end Rob Gronkowski as well as playing with an offensive line filled with question marks and injuries already. The Dolphins, whose defensive strength is disrupting the line of scrimmage and getting pressure on the quarterback, will be looking to make this day a frustrating one for the Jimmy Garaoppolo led Patriots’ offense.
The Dolphins could also see the return of second-year receiver DeVante Parker, which might give the offense a spark it was missing last week. Quarterback Ryan Tannehill seemed to find some rhythm near the end of the team’s 12-10 loss to the Seattle Seahawks last week, and will be looking to carry that over to this week. Miami has to find a way to open running lanes for Arian Foster and free up receiver Jarvis Landry - as well as have Kenny Stills and Jordan Cameron remember how to catch a pass - but this game might be winnable for the South Florida franchise.
I have picked the Dolphins to win this game in our The Phinsider picks pool, and I will not change that with this prediction. I think the Dolphins steal a win in New England this weekend, coming away with a 24-17 win.
You can also provide your guess for how the game will win, using the Crowd’s Line widget below. SB Nation tracks the results for each blog, ranking how well each site predicts the respective final score for their game. Will we finish better than we did last year, where we were in the basement all year long? Put in your final score and see how close you can come to the actual result: