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New England Patriots links 1/07/22 - Patriots at Dolphins: Game plans, previews, keys to victory

Daily news and links for Friday

New England Patriots v Atlanta Falcons
Devin McCourty makes an interception. Pats need to win the turnover battle in Miami
Photo by Todd Kirkland/Getty Images



  • Evan Lazar’s Patriots Game Plan: Dolphins defense is perfect playoff tune-up for Mac Jones, Pats offense. Brian Flores’s defense is as good a unit as the Patriots will face the rest of the way.
  • Murph (E2GSports) Monster Keys to squish the phish Part Two. 1. Shut down Tua’s RPO.
  • Alex Barth gives us his Patriots vs. Dolphins key matchups. Patriots ball carriers vs. Dolphins secondary: Granted, the Patriots’ offensive margin for error is much greater than it was in Week 1, but nothing will swing a game faster than turnovers. The ball carriers need to aware the Miami defenders will be going for the football, and protect the rock better than they did in the first meeting.
  • Mark Morse (PatsFans) Week 18 preview: Patriots at Dolphins. Miami is surprisingly low on the Defensive team rankings. They are 18th in points allowed per game, 18th in yards per game, and 10th in rush yards per game. I would expect more out of a Brian Flores-coached team. None of those stats mean much when the Phins see the red white and blue of the Patriots on Sunday.
  • Andrew Callahan explains why Matt Judon and the Patriots’ pass rush must rediscover their form in Miami.
  • Khari Thompson tells us four things to know ahead of the Patriots’ season finale against the Dolphins. 1. New England must stop Jaylen Waddle.
  • Nick O’Malley’s Patriots vs. Dolphins anti-analysis. 3. The dog camera caught Mac Jones’ girlfriend “lighting dinner on fire” and throwing it outside.
  • Andrew Callahan takes a look at how the defense will adjust if Kyle Dugger and Myles Bryant miss Sunday’s game.
  • Karen Guregian says the two-headed monster of Damien Harris and Rhamondre Stevenson should scare any opponent.
  • Jim Hackett sees Sunday as a perfect opportunity for the Patriots to exorcise their Miami demons.
  • Mike D’Abate (PatriotMaven) Notebook: Patriots-Dolphins injury reports, snow day in Foxboro and More.
  • Andy Hart suggests that while Mac Jones might be ready for a playoff run, his Patriots playmakers probably aren’t.
  • Nick Stevens considers who the Patriots should want to face in the playoffs.
  • Zack Cox’ Patriots Mailbag: How would Pats replace absent DBs vs. Dolphins? Plus: Analyzing Kristian Wilkerson vs. N’Keal Harry.
  • Phil Perry’s Patriots Mailbag: What are realistic expectations for Kristian Wilkerson?
  • Tom Westerholm notes Matt Judon was incredulous to learn he has just one QB hit in past month.
  • CBS Boston repots second-year safety Kyle Dugger missed his second straight practice with a hand injury.
  • CBS Boston notes Bill Belichick gave his annual snow warning speech ahead of today’s storm. We’ll see if there are any Jetson’s on the team.
  • Dakota Randall hears from Miami players and coaches with updated Mac Jones takes ahead of rematch.
  • Zack Cox thumbnails the 14 players set to hit the market after the season, plus three restricted free agents.
  • Keith Pearson’s The Bet Box, Week 18. Motivation is a big thing to keep in mind this weekend. Patriots 24-17.


  • Albert Breer (SI) GamePlan: Previewing the 2022 coach hiring cycle; Plus, previewing Week 18’s biggest games and story lines, and Antonio’s Brown’s future.
  • Jonathan Jones (CBS Sports) NFL insider notebook: Browns appear stuck with Baker Mayfield for another year, plus Week 18 picks.
  • Staff (ESPN) NFL Week 18 game picks, schedule guide, playoff picture, bold predictions, odds, injuries and more.
  • Barry Werner (TouchdownWire) NFL reveals Week 18 announcers’ schedule. Patriots-Dolphins: Spero Dedes, Jay Feely, Jenny Dell.
  • Cameron Filipe (Football Zebras) Week 18 referee assignments. Patriots at Dolphins: Alex Kemp.
  • Mark Schofield (TouchdownWire) Performance bonuses to watch for in Week 18. Dont’a Hightower included.
  • Thomas Neumann (TouchdownWire) 6 NFL records that could be broken in Week 18.
  • Adam London notes Kendrick Bourne made Bill Barnwell’s list of the best bargain signings from this offseason.
  • Neal Coolong (TouchdownWire) 1 pending free agent each NFL team should bring back in 2022. Pats: J.C. Jackson.
  • Nick Shook ( Top 10 most clutch players of the 2021 NFL season. No Pats.
  • Ben Solak (The Ringer) The Offensive Player of the Year race is coming down to the wire.
  • Ian O’Connor (NY Post) AFC East’s young QBs provide formidable measuring stick for Zach Wilson.
  • Steven Ruiz (The Ringer) Which NFL QBs could be on the move this offseason? And where might they end up?
  • Cynthia Frelund ( 2021 NFL playoffs: Projecting all 14 postseason teams and seeding. Patriots 5th.
  • Gregg Rosenthal ( Week 18 NFL game picks. It’s not that I don’t believe in what the Dolphins accomplished during their winning streak. Tua Tagovailoa will play better in better conditions this week, and the Miami defense won’t give up much through the air. It’s just that the Patriots’ ceiling is so much higher offensively. They can run on the Dolphins and are more likely to win the turnover margin, like they have all year. Pats win 28-20.
  • Rodger Sherman (The Ringer) The 10 most embarrassing Jets and Giants moments of the past five years, from a coach ranting to a quarterback seeing ghosts.
  • Kevin Clark (The Ringer) The NFL keeps failing Hiring 101.
  • Rich Cimini (ESPN) What happens in NFL head-coaching interviews? ‘It’s not about the X’s and O’s, it’s about the CEOs.’
  • Dan Wetzel (Yahoo! Sports) Aaron Rodgers-Hub Arkush uproar is perfect example of why media shouldn’t vote on sports awards.


  • Alain Poupart (AllDolphins) Important season finale for Tua.
  • Alain Poupart (AllDolphins) Dolphins Notebook: The Good Guy curse, running back moves, practice squad notes, More
  • Jake Mendel (ThePhinsider) Five players with the most to gain — or lose — in Miami’s season finale against New England.
  • Mike Oliva (MiamiDolphins) The Blitz: Friday, January 7, 2022.
  • Mike Masala (DolphinsWire) Dolphins injury report: All six players participated fully on Thursday.