BUFFALO (CBSMiami/SportsDirect) – There is no doubt that this is the biggest game the Miami Dolphins have played in several years.
The Dolphins can secure their first playoff berth in eight years on Saturday afternoon with a win against the host Buffalo Bills, in addition to a Denver loss at Kansas City.
First things first for the Dolphins, who are bidding for their ninth win in 10 outings overall and their first victory in western New York since 2011 when quarterback Matt Moore threw two touchdown passes in a 30-23 triumph.
“It’s a tough place to play,” Moore said of competing in Orchard Park, N.Y. “In the past we just haven’t executed very well. Hopefully that’s not the case this time.”
The 32-year-old Moore executed quite nicely in his first start in five years, throwing a career-high four touchdowns in Saturday’s 34-13 romp over the New York Jets.
Buffalo recorded a similar rout to keep its flickering postseason hopes alive, with Pro Bowl selection LeSean McCoy rushing for 153 yards and two touchdowns in Sunday’s 33-13 triumph over winless Cleveland.
The 28-year-old McCoy has erupted for 413 rushing yards and five scores in his last four games, but was limited by an ailing hamstring to just 11 yards on eight carries in the Bills’ 28-25 setback to the Dolphins on Oct. 23.
TV: 1 p.m. ET, CBS. LINE: Bills -3.5. O/U: 42
ABOUT THE DOLPHINS (9-5): Jay Ajayi surpassed the 200-yard plateau for the second straight week when he erupted for 214 yards and a touchdown in the last meeting with Buffalo.
The second-year running back once again recorded a triple-digit yard performance after the team’s bye, but has been held under 79 in each of his last six outings with only one trip into the end zone to boot.
Kenny Stills reeled in his seventh touchdown from 20-plus yards out last week when he snared a 52-yard catch versus the Jets and also found the end zone in his last meeting with the Bills.
ABOUT THE BILLS (7-7): While McCoy being named as a Pro Bowl selection for the fifth time in his career is hardly considered breaking news, linebacker Lorenzo Alexander has opened eyes with his stellar play this season.
The 33-year-old notched his second such honor on Tuesday after his team-leading 11.5 sacks have him tied for third-best in the NFL.
Miami native Tyrod Taylor completed over 70 percent of his passes last week versus Cleveland, but was just 14 of 28 (season-low 50 percent) for 221 yards in the first meeting with the Dolphins.
- Miami DE Cameron Wake (team-leading 10.5 sacks) and DT Ndamukong Suh (62 tackles, five sacks) were named to their respective fifth Pro Bowls on Tuesday.
- Bills LB Zach Brown is the lone NFL player with 125-plus tackles (130) and at least four sacks.
- Miami CB Tony Lippett had two of his team-leading four interceptions last week.
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