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Miami Dolphins vs New England Patriots - NFL Week 1

Sunday
September 13, 2020
1:00 PM ET

Foxborough, Massachusetts
Gillette Stadium

About the Dolphins

QB Ryan Fitzpatrick will begin the season as the starter, but fans in Miami are anticipating the beginning of the Tua Tagovailoa era, but they will have to be patient for now, especially considering the youth and inexperience on the offensive line. RB’s Jordan Howard and Matt Brieda were acquired during the offseason. Jordan is more of a runner in between the tackles type of player while Brieda provides a change of place hitting the corner on the outside type of runner. While WR Devante Parker is a reliable target in the passing game, TE Mike Gesicki could evolve into a trusted pass catcher with just a bit of consistency at the QB position. The Dolphins invested heavily in the defense with the signings of DB Byron Jones and LB’s Kamu Grugier-Hill and Emmanuel Ogbah. The Dolphins also went defense-heavy in the draft with the selections of DB Noah Igbinoghene out of Auburn, DT Raekwon Davis from Alabama, and S Brandon Jones out of the University of Texas. These rookies should contribute immediately to their potential and talent.

About the Patriots

Goodbye Tom Brady, hello Cam Newton. It may seem weird seeing the 6-time Super Bowl champion in a different uniform, but who better to replace Brady than Newton? Newton comes into New England with something to prove while also auditioning for next season since he only signed a 1-year deal. It’s going to be interesting to see what kind of creative schemes offensive coordinator Josh McDaniels conjures up. Critics have pointed out the lack of adequate weapons on the Patriots offense, but these underrated players always seem to perform beat when the odds are against them. Head coach Bill Belichick has a gift of getting the very best out of his players, especially the ones who everybody seems to doubt and pass up. This team has good depth on both sides of the ball and just because Brady isn’t behind center anymore doesn’t mean that the Patriots won’t be contenders in the AFC East.

Players to Watch

Christian Wilkins (Dolphins): Can Wilkins be the impact run stopper in the middle of the Dolphins defensive line? Will he consistently be able to put pressure on QBs? His first test of the season will be against Isaiah Wynn, Joe Thuney, and David Andrews.

Cam Newton (Patriots): All eyes will be on Newton to see if he can revert back to his MVP form and what kind of dimension will he bring to the Pats offense.

Impact Rookies

Austin Jackson (Dolphins): A 1st round pick out of USC, the Dolphins are hoping that he develops into an elite pass protector but he will have his hands full in his 1st NFL game against the Patriots defense.

Kyle Dugger (Patriots): A small school product, Belichick always finds these diamonds in the rough. While he is behind S Devin McCourty on the depth chart, it will provide him the opportunity to learn from a seasoned veteran.

Prediction

More than likely, this will be another rebuilding year in Miami, so don’t expect them to keep up with Belichick’s squad.

Final Score: Dolphins 10 / Patriots 45

Daniel I. Outerbridge

Daniel I. Outerbridge

A contributing writer with aspirations and ambitions to become a sports journalist.

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