Our Miami Dolphins did what most of the NFL world, including our very own fans, did not believe they could do. They climbed out of the deepest of holes after going only 1 and 7 in their first 8 games fighting all the way back to .500. Now that they have fought and scraped their way back to 7 and 7 it’s time to make a push for the next goal, making the playoffs. I am sure we will say this each week as long as the team continues to win but this is the biggest game for this team in a very long time.
As it stands today if the Dolphins win their final three games which includes tonight's game against the New Orleans Saints, next weeks contest against the team’s former starting quarterback Ryan Tannehill and the Tennessee Titans, and the final game against the team that we played on the first Sunday of the season, the New England Patriots, they will make the playoffs. A win tonight will give the team, at least for this week, the seventh and last seed in the AFC’s playoff chase. If that happens only the Dolphins can screw it up by losing one of their final two games.
The mere fact that the Dolphins still have a shot, at least mathematically, to also still win the division is a minor miracle given the great season that both the Bills and Patriots have had for the majority of the season up until now. I like many of you are waiting for this team to do something that is so “Miami Dolphins” and blow their chance but no matter how this team ends the season I for one will be proud of how these kids (they all seem like kids once you get to your 50s) fought when it would have seemed easier to pack it in and give up.
This season has also shown us that the team has some glaring weaknesses but we have another full offseason coming to address those which will also give many of our stellar rookies and younger players further time to develop. As someone who has been a fan my entire life, through the good, the okay, and the downright embarrassing, I am for one feeling as positive about this team, or at least their long-term prospects, as I have been since Marino was the starter. Even though Marino only made it to the big dance once and then lost there was something magical about that time and being a fan of a team that you believed had a legitimate shot at making the playoffs and even the Superbowl every year because in those days only Marino could do what Marino could do. He was at the time the phenom of phenoms.
Beating the Saints tonight will not only keep the Dolphins in the playoff race but it will also be the next step in the progression of this team towards what we all so desperately want to see out of this team. I for one am ready to once again be a fan of a team that is a perennial threat to make the playoffs or make a legit run at the Super Bowl. As I heard the great Tony Dungy recently state, “If your goal each season is not to make the playoffs and play for the championship then you shouldn't be playing or coaching in this game!.”
As far as the Saints go they are coming into this game off a two-game win streak following a five-game losing streak. The five losses were all against good to decent teams. Their “bounce back” game was two weeks ago against a horrible New York Jets team that they blew out 30 to 9. The more impressive win of the two was last week where they managed to shut out the very high-powered offense of the Tampa Bay Buccaneers despite only being able to muster three field goals themselves. As much as it worried me as a Phins fan to see the Saints defense play with such dominance knowing that we had to play them in a week it was enjoyable to see Tom Brady have a toddler level meltdown on the sideline.
While the Saints will be playing with their third-string quarterback this evening they still possess one of the best rushers in the league in Alvin Kamara to go along with the stifling style of defense that the team is playing right now. Even when you look at their defensive stats for the entire season they are the fourth-best defense in the league in the one stat that matters most, points surrendered, with the team only giving up an average of 20.4 points per contest.
Please use this game thread to follow and discuss tonight’s game between your Miami Dolphins and the New Orleans Saints. As always all site rules apply to the live game threads as they do on any other post on the site. Also please remember that SBNation is very strict on the sharing, requesting, or even discussing illegal game streams. Doing so can cost you a warning or a complete banning from the entire platform.
Miami Dolphins (7-7) 3rd AFC East @ New Orleans Saints (7-7) 2nd NFC South
- Where: Ceasars Superdome, New Orleans, Louisiana
- When: Monday, December 27th, 8:15 PM EST
- TV: ESPN
- Broadcast Team: Steve Levy, Brian Griese, Louis Riddick, Lisa Salters
- Live Stream: FuboTV; Yahoo Sports Mobile App; ESPN+; WatchESPN.com; ESPN App; NFL Game Pass (Will be available after the live conclusion of the game)
- Radio Broadcast On Dolphins Radio Network: including WQAM 560 AM, KISS 99.9 FM, and WQBA 1140 AM (Spanish) in Dade/Broward; WUUB 106.3 FM and WEFL 760 AM (Spanish) in West Palm/Treasure Coast; ESPN 580 AM in Orlando; WRXK 96 FM in Ft. Myers; WPSL 1590 AM in Port St. Lucie; WKWF 1600 AM in Key West
- Radio Broadcast On Westwood One Sports national coverage: Station finder
- Sirius Streaming Broadcast Channels: 81 (Dolphins), 83 (Saints), 88 (National)
- XM Streaming Broadcast Channels: 226 (Dolphins), 225 (Saints), 88 (National)
- Dolphins Radio Broadcast Team: Jason Taylor, Jimmy Cefalo & Joe Rose
- National Radio Broadcast Team: Kevin Harlan, Kurt Warner
- Odds: Miami Dolphins -3
- Over/Under: 37
- Game Time Weather: Dome; Outside: Partly cloudy, 67°F degrees
- All-Time Head To Head: Tied at 6 and 6
- Most Recent Meeting: The New Orleans Saints won 20-0 @ London, 10/01/2017 (Week 4)
- New Orleans Saints SBNation site: Canal Street Chronicles
- Canal Street Chronicles Twitter: @SaintsCSC