What to watch for: Bills-Dolphins

The Bills look to start the season 5-1 with win over the winless Dolphins

Sal Capaccio
October 19, 2019 - 9:34 pm

Photo: Rich Barnes - USA TODAY Sports

Categories: 

The Buffalo Bills look to start a season at least 5-1 for the 11th time in franchise history when they face the Miami Dolphins this Sunday at New Era Field.

Here are my three keys to the game, as well as notes and stats:

 

  • Uh-oh, Fitz Magic?

Dolphins head coach Brian Flores benched quarterback Josh Rosen just one week after declaring him the starter for the rest of the season and has turned back to veteran, and former Bills quarterback Ryan Fitzpatrick. We all know too well in Buffalo that Fitzpatrick is a true gunslinger, who will throw the ball up to give his guys a chance. But with that, he’ll also give Bills defensive backs a chance for picks. The Bills' secondary will need to make sure there’s not a breakdown, or even a fluke play that leads to a score. They have to take advantage of those balls in the air and come down with them themselves.  

 

  • Josh Allen’s fishing

In his short career so far, Bills quarterback Josh Allen has played some of his best games against the Dolphins, averaging 227.5 yards passing and 115 yards rushing per-game, throwing a total of five touchdowns and running for two more. He’ll have plenty of opportunities to build on those numbers on Sunday. The Dolphins have allowed opposing quarterbacks a league-high 131.0 passer rating so far though five games. To add to that, check out some these stats for their pass defense. They’re downright awful in many categories:

  • One interception (31st in NFL; ARZ has 0)
  • Five sacks (32nd, tied with ATL)
  • 15 quarterback hits (32nd)
  • 9.7 yards per-pass attempt (32nd)
  • 13.7 yards per-completion (32nd)
  • Nine tackles for loss (32nd) - next worst team has 18!

 

  • Bury them early

The Dolphins are 0-5. The Bills are 4-1. Buffalo is a 17-point favorite, but this is the NFL and we’ve all seen teams lose in this situation. In fact, the last two time the Bills were 17-point favorites, they lost. Last year, the Bills were 16.5-point underdogs at Minnesota and beat the Vikings. In that game, the Bills got a couple turnovers early, made a few big plays, and suddenly were up a couple scores. That’s what they cannot allow the Dolphins to do here. Miami is a desperate team, looking for their first win. Fitzpatrick a quarterback other players rally around. The Bills need to put any sort of hope the Dolphins have to rest as early as possible and not allow them make any plays and score themselves. Early and often. Keep the worst team in the league down and remind them that’s what they are.
 

NOTES AND STATS


Follow me on Twitter: @SalSports

Comments ()