The Bills will limp home this week for a must win game against the division leading Miami Dolphins. The Bills need a win to stay alive for a shot at the division title and to keep their playoff hopes afloat also. They will play the fish with four or five starters on defense out with injuries. The Dolphins come to town off of a huge road win in Indianapolis behind their backup quarterback and running back.
Facts and Figures
The injury list continues to grow for the Bills as they got battered for the third week in a row. The Buccaneers game was the worst beating they took injury wise however. They lost three starters on defense for probably the rest of the regular season in the game. The Bills will now be without 4 or 5 starters on defense this week against Miami. Antoine Winfield, Sam Cowart, Sam Rogers, and Keion Carpenter are definitely out. Phil Hansen may return from a sprained knee but that is still questionable. Donovan Greer is expected to return this week from a sprained ankle, he played one play on Sunday and will probably start for Winfield. Sammy Morris is still suffering from his high ankle sprain. The starters on defense will be replaced by rookies and second year players. Jay Foreman will start for Cowart. Third round pick Corey Moore will play for Rogers if he's healthy enough to go with his own high ankle sprain. Second round pick Travares Tillman will start for Carpenter. The Dolphins will probably be getting three key injured players back as starting QB Jay Fielder, starting RB Lamar Smith, and starting WR O.J. McDuffie are expected to play. This won't be a homecoming for Thurman Thomas as his season is over because of a torn ACL.
For complete injury news throughout the week and the Official NFL Injury Report go to our Injury Page.
WR Eric Moulds vs. CB Sam Madison: The Dolphins will put their best cover guy against the Bills best player. For the offense to go, Moulds needs to continue to make catches. Look for the slant patterns to Moulds and some good run after the catch if the Bills are going to win.
Bills RBs vs. LB Zach Thomas: This is a mismatch as Thomas should have no problems shutting down the Bills running game.
OL Ruben Brown vs. DT Tim Bowens: The big tackle needs to be stopped. If the Dolphins get a good push up the middle the running game has no chance and Johnson will be running more than they want.
LT John Fina vs. DE Jason Taylor: Taylor was having his best season before being slowed by a back injury. Fina needs to win this battle to keep the pass rush at bay.
LBs Jay Foreman vs. Dolphins RBs: Foreman is no Cowart but if he can hold is own and help shutdown the running game, the Bills can make the Dolphins beat them through the air.
When The Bills Have The Ball: The running game is anemic so if Morris doesn't play the Bills will continue to play with the short, ball controlled passing game that basically worked against Tampa Bay.
When The Dolphins Have The Ball: Expect Miami to exploit the huge holes in the decimated Bills defense. They will try to mix in runs with passes so the young, inexperienced players won't be able to key on one aspect of the Dolphins offense.
Bills Daily Prediction
On paper there is no way the Bills can win this game. They have too many injuries to beat the division leader. Fortunately, the game isn't played on paper and to their advantage it will be played in frigid Orchard Park. Look for resiliency, heart, and the 12th man to help the team overcome the injuries: Buffalo 21, Miami 20
Season Prediction Record: (9-3)
Season Record Against The Spread: (5-7)
Game Analysis and Review - Coming Sunday Night Dec. 3rd!
Positional Breakdown and Grades - Coming Sunday Night! Dec. 3rd!
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