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If the New England Patriots are going to win the Super Bowl this season, it's going to require Tom Brady's heaviest lift ever. The current Patriots defense is worse than any of the defenses that helped Brady to his previous five Super Bowl rings. This isn't to say the New England defense is bad. It's respectable. New England stands sixth in the NFL in points allowed,…

Bills

New England has been running this play successfully since Tom Brady took over as quarterback in 2001. Randy Moss hit a variation of this play on the Buffalo Bills in 2007. First down. Running personnel. Two tight ends, two running backs. Maximum protection and just one receiver in the downfield pattern. Brady is a wonderful ball-handler and sells good play-action fakes. …

Bills

The Miami Dolphins are relying more on the blitz to try to bolster a pass rush that ranks 27th in the NFL. Miami blitzed Tyrod Taylor on 14 of 35 drop-backs in the Bills' 24-16 victory Sunday. That's the highest rate (40 percent) any team has sent five or more rushers at the Bills this season. The Bills handled it well enough. Taylor was an adequate 5 of 11 for 77 ya…

Bills

Vlad Ducasse and Jordan Mills were standouts for the Buffalo Bills' offensive line in Sunday's victory over the Miami Dolphins. Ducasse held his own at right guard against Miami star Ndamukong Suh and paved the way for some good runs by LeSean McCoy. Mills held off Miami's best edge rusher, Cameron Wake, in one-on-one pass protection virtually the whole game. Cred…

Bills

Bills vs. Miami third-down D Miami had allowed opponents to convert just 1 of 24 third-down situations the past two weeks. Miami ranked sixth overall on third-down defense, allowing only 34 percent conversions. The Bills snapped the Dolphin hot streak. Buffalo converted 7 of 15 plays, 47 percent. Tyrod Taylor, Charles Clay and LeSean McCoy made the Dolphins pay on th…

Bills

A rare fast start by the offense made the Buffalo Bills' path to victory over the Miami Dolphins a lot easier on Sunday. The Bills scored a touchdown on their opening drive for the first time this season. (Two field goal drives were the only opening-march scores for Buffalo in the first 13 games.) The Bills scored more than 14 points in the first half for the first t…

Bills

Matchup Watch: Dolphins at Bills Jarvis Landry vs. Leonard Johnson It's good that the Bills are getting their slot cornerback back. Johnson missed the Colts game with a sore knee but it didn't matter due to the winter weather. This week the Bills face one of the top slot receivers in the NFL in Landry. He's second in the NFL in catches with 88, and 50 of them have co…

Bills

Miami Dolphins coach Adam Gase likes to run receiver screens, and he has a dangerous weapon to execute them in Jarvis Landry. It's an extended handoff, and even if it doesn't get big yards, Landry has the elusiveness to turn it into a positive gain. It's often a run-pass option for the quarterback. Miami ran receiver screens for 11 and 14 yards at Buffalo last year.…

Bills

Consider Kenyan Drake's emergence for the Miami Dolphins this month as the umpteenth example of why running backs should not be taken in the first round of the NFL Draft. The Dolphins pulled the plug six weeks ago on Jay Ajayi, trading him to Philadelphia after a disappointing first half to the 2017 season, despite the fact he rushed for 1,272 yards last year. As Bil…

Bills

Miami Dolphins defensive tackle Ndamukong Suh is having another great season and will be a handful for the Buffalo Bills' offensive line on Sunday. Suh has the second most sacks (51.5) among all NFL defensive tackles since 2010 and wears down foes with his power, second effort and counter moves as the game wears on.   On this play against Oakland in Week 9, …

Bills

LeSean McCoy showed off remarkable ability to get traction in the snow in Sunday's victory over the Indianapolis Colts. McCoy was able to get outside the numbers for 73 of his 156 yards in the Bills' 13-7 victory. "I think the harder you cut, you plant in the ground, you can get upfield," McCoy said. "When you're slowing down and try to cut, you're liable to slip. ..…

Bills

It was a close call but NFL referee Brad Allen arguably got the key penalty correct at the end of regulation time in Sunday's 13-7 win over the Indianapolis Colts. The Colts were called for offensive pass interference on a two-point conversion play, wiping out a successful pass from Jacoby Brissett to tight end Jack Doyle. Colts receiver Kamar Aiken clearly blocked Bill…

Bills

Deonte Thompson used to chase rabbits through the mucky soil of sugar cane fields when he was a youngster growing up in Belle Glade, Fla. Belle Glade, located due west of West Palm Beach, is sometimes referred to as Muck City. Maybe that experience long ago helped the Buffalo Bills' receiver navigate the ankle-high snow Sunday at New Era Field. Thompson made the c…

Bills

Colton Schmidt vs. Rigoberto Sanchez Both punters were superb. Neither had a shank or a muffed exchange. Schmidt's net average was 38 yards, Sanchez's was 35.6. Schmidt made the clutch punt of the game, kicking from deep in the end zone with the Bills backed up at their own 5 with 2:16 left in the half. He booted a 40-yarder with no return. "That was the hardest kick…

Bills

LeSean McCoy vs. Colts LBs The Colts' defensive line has played well. But the linebacking corps took a big hit this week with the loss of John Simon for the season to a neck injury. Former Browns top pick Barkevious Mingo takes his left outside spot, and he has been productive rushing the passer. But he's not as good against the run. Second-year inside starter Antonio M…