The New England Patriots and Miami Dolphins match up in a big AFC East divisional battle Sunday in Week 8. This will be a 1 pm ET kickoff, with coverage broadcast on CBS.
Sun., Oct. 27th, 2013 @ 1:00pm ET
Gillette Stadium, Foxborough, MA
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Pats by 7 ~ 45.5 o/u @ BetOnline
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This became an even bigger game with New England losing in overtime to the New York Jets last week. That gave the Patriots their second loss of the season, which brings Miami to within two games of the lead. A victory by the Dolphins on Sunday and that lead would not only be dwindled to one game, but it would also make Miami 1-0 against New England in their divisional series.
It’s certainly been a closer-than-expected race so far on the year, with the Jets sitting just one game behind at 4-3. A loss combined with a New York win would tie the Patriots and Jets at the top of the AFC East, with Miami just one game behind. And let’s not forget the Buffalo Bills who are 3-4, and have the chance to pull to .500.
In other words, there are a ton of different scenarios that can work out this week, given the fact that this is a very tight division through the first half of the year.
The good news for New England is that Rob Gronkowski was back in the lineup on Sunday. He was targeted 17 times by Brady, catching eight passes for 114 yards to lead the team. Gronkowski should be the primary target of Brady once again this week, which means that Miami will need to formulate a defensive game plan around him.
The Dolphins are trying to stop the bleeding, losing three straight games after starting the season out 3-0. The latest was a division loss to Buffalo 23-21. Things aren’t easy this week with New England or next week with Cincinnati.
One thing about the Patriots is that they don’t typically lose two games in a row. They are very good at regrouping, refocusing, and putting together a win coming off of a loss.