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Game Preview: Dolphins at Bills, 12/18/11
Posted By Jesse Agler On December 17, 2011 @ 9:51 am In Football | No Comments
The Dolphins (4-9) head into the final three weeks of the season with three straight division games beginning this week with the 5-8 Buffalo Bills.
It’s the second meeting in the last month between the teams, as the Fins beat up the Bills 35-8 on November 20th. A win this week would complete the season-sweep of the Bills for the 21st time and the since 2008. Buffalo is a team, of course, that the Dolphins have had a ton of success against over the years (including an NFL-record 20 straight wins from 1970-79) and we’ve put together some of the memories of some of the biggest and most historical wins in this week’s LIST .
The big news this week around the Dolphins, of course, was more big picture, as head coach Tony Sparano was relieved of his duties on Monday. For more on that situation, team owner Steve Ross and GM Jeff Ireland came in studio to answer some of the questions  surrounding the coaching move.
Replacing Sparano on an interim basis is former assistant head coach and secondary coach Todd Bowles. Having arrived in South Florida with Sparano in 2008, Bowles also visited the studio this week to talk about the transition to his new position as well as his coaching philosophies .
Back to the here and now: Week 15 and the Buffalo Bills. Losers of six straight, the Bills are trying desperately to get back on track in the final three weeks of the season and seem to have revenge on their minds a bit not only because they lost by 27 to the Dolphins four weeks ago, but because of the way they lost. Miami dominated them physically, knocked several guys out for the game/season, and afterwards suggested that they quit. For more on the Bills’ perspective, you can go Behind Enemy Lines  to hear the conference calls of coach Chan Gailey and QB Ryan Fitzpatrick as well as interviews with safety George Wilson and reporter Tim Graham.
Speaking of injuries, they will play a noticeable role in Sunday’s game. Both teams have declared a starter out for this one, with several other key figures for the Dolphins–including QB Matt Moore and LT Jake Long–listed as questionable. For more, here’s the entire official injury report  for both teams.
Injuries, of course, play a role in every single NFL game and at the end of the day it’s about execution as much as anything else. So what do the Dolphins need to do to come away with their fifth win of the season? Our John Congemi has some idea as he gives you his weekly Keys to the Game .
John mentions the weather, which is always something to keep an eye on in Buffalo this time of year, and the forecast has been changing. Earlier in the week, it looks liked temperatures would be in the mid-30′s with some sun shining through, but later in the week, there was an indication that there could be some pre-game snow. To stay on top of the meteorological situation, here’s the current weather report  for Orchard Park.
As always, we’ve got all the coverage you can possibly handle on gameday, so check out the rundown of TV/Radio/Internet coverage . Spoiler alert: you can join us straight-through from 10:30am until 6:00pm.
Finally, legendary Dolphin Sam Madison and I discuss this game and what we expect to see out of both the Dolphins and the Bills:
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URL to article: http://www.thefinsiders.com/blog/2011/game-preview-dolphins-at-bills-121811
URLs in this post:
 Image: http://thefinsiders.com/?attachment_id=25764
 View Results: #ViewPollResults
 this week’s LIST: http://thefinsiders.com/photo_story/the-list-best-buffalo-beatings
 answer some of the questions: http://thefinsiders.com/podcasts/2011/stephen-ross-jeff-ireland-in-studio
 transition to his new position as well as his coaching philosophies: http://thefinsiders.com/podcasts/2011/todd-bowles-in-studio-121411
 Behind Enemy Lines: http://thefinsiders.com/blog/2011/behind-enemy-lines-week-15-vs-bills
 entire official injury report: http://thefinsiders.com/blog/2011/injury-report-dolphins-at-bills-121811
 Keys to the Game: http://thefinsiders.com/blog/2011/congemis-keys-miami-at-buffalo
 current weather report: http://www.weather.com/weather/today/USNY1071
 rundown of TV/Radio/Internet coverage: http://thefinsiders.com/blog/2011/tvradio-lineup-dolphins-at-bills-121811
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