The ailing Buffalo Bills travel to Miami to take on a Dolphins team that is coming off of two impressive victories, ending their "Suck For Luck" sweepstakes. The Bills, on the other hand, are coming off of two embarrassing losses to the New York Jets and the Dallas Cowboys, virtually ending their early season playoff hopes.
The Bills are facing a different team than they thought they'd be seeing just weeks ago, and much of that is led by the success of Dolphins' tight end Anthony Fasano and running back Reggie Bush.
As always, here are my breakdowns of the individual matchups of various players and units that will have a huge impact on the outcome of the game.
Bills running back, Fred Jackson, is having a career year, rushing for 917 yards and six touchdowns, while adding another 34 receptions for 392 yards out of the backfield. The Dolphins rank 10th in the league against the rush, allowing just 105.1 yards per game on the ground.
Jackson is second in the league in yards from scrimmage, so the Bills should be able to find ways for Freddy to make plays. He is a tough and powerful runner that is difficult to tackle, and often turns plays of no gain into bursts of extra yardage.
The Dolphins run defense is led by their two inside linebackers, Karlos Dansby and Kevin Burnett, who on the year, have combined for 115 tackles and 10 tackles for a loss.
Who Has The Edge: Fred Jackson
While the Bills defense has played exceptionally better than they were just a season ago, defending the run is still a major issue for the defensive unit. Ranked 23rd in the league, the Bills are allowing offenses to rush for an average of 125.4 yards per game on the ground.
Reggie Bush has seemingly found his role through the last three games, and has averaged 4.6 yards per carry, while gaining 474 yards and scoring three touchdowns. He has also been a favorite target of quarterback Matt Moore in the flats, catching 28 passes for 168 yards and a score.
Rookie running back, Daniel Thomas, is also beginning to make an impact for the team as he has rushed for 356 yards on the year. Nick Barnett, the Bills' inside linebacker, has 71 tackles, four for a loss and a forced fumble this year, and needs to have another big game inside the hashes if the Bills want to keep the 'Fins run game in check.
Who Has The Edge: Push
The Bills offensive line is once again in shambles, as one of the Bills' best players, center Eric Wood, will miss the remainder of the season with a torn ACL. Left tackles Demetrius Bell and Chris Hairston have been sidelined for the past few weeks, forcing left guard Andy Levitre to kick out to tackle.
Hairston could be back this week, moving Levitre back to his natural guard position, with Kraig Urbik playing center, Colin Brown at right guard and Erik Pears at right tackle.
The Dolphins defensive line has been playing their best football of the year in terms of getting to the passer. Linebackers Jason Taylor and Cameron Wake, who have combined for nine sacks on the year, will certainly be bringing the heat on Hairston and Pears.
The three man defensive front consisting of Randy Starks, Paul Soliai and Jared Odrick have added another 4.5. Paul Soliai is a solid nose guard, and it will be interesting to see how Kraig Urbik fares against him.
Who Has The Edge: Dolphins
The Bills' defensive line has been solid in occupying blockers, yet they haven't been able to routinely attack the quarterback. The defensive unit as a whole has 15 sacks, however, 10 of those inflated the number after they got after John Beck and the Washington Redskins in a 23-0 win.
Keep an eye on the matchup between rookie nose tackle Marcell Dareus and rookie center Mike Pouncey. Both have played solid football this season, with Dareus recording 3.5 sacks and absolutely manhandling any offensive lineman he has faced throughout the year.
Dolphins left tackle Jake Long is one of the best in the game, and the Bills will really need Dwan Edwards, who has 35 tackles, 1.5 sacks and two tackles for a loss this year, along with linebackers Danny Batten and Arthur Moats to attack Long all game.
Who Has The Edge: Push
The Dolphins haven't been able to create turnovers on defense, which has been a huge factor in their 2-7 record, and they will have a tough task on Sunday against the Bills' shotgun-spread offense that has been creating mismatches for opposing defenses all year long.
Buffalo often lines up four or five wideouts, which could prove too much for the young and inexperienced Dolphins secondary. Stevie Johnson, the Bills' leading wide receiver, who has 44 catches for 531 yards and four touchdowns will likely be lined up with Dolphins cornerback Vontae Davis for most of the game.
Stevie hasn't really been an impact in recent games, but has been taking coverage away from his fellow wideouts, David Nelson (31 catches, 433 yards, four touchdowns), Donald Jones and tight end Scott Chandler, who has quietly had a solid year. While catching just 21 passes for 194 yards, he leads the team in touchdowns with six.
The Dolphins secondary has recorded just one of the team's four interceptions on the year, so if Ryan Fitzpatrick can be accurate, look for the Bills receivers to explode.
Who Has The Edge: Bills
Dolphins Passing Attack Vs. Bills Pass Defense
The Bills have been shredded throughout the year by pass-happy offenses, allowing 261.4 yards through the air, ranked 27th in the league. Buffalo has 15 interceptions this year, but they have been allowing too many deep plays.
Matt Moore has played iffy in his five games, posting a 2-3 record while completing 62.9% of his passes for 1,159 yards, throwing four touchdowns and five interceptions.
Dolphins wide receiver, Brandon Marshall, who has 53 catches for 742 yards and two touchdowns, will likely line up with Bills cornerback, Leodis McKelvin. McKelvin was burned twice last week by Dez Bryant, who is very similar in size and play style to Marshall, which will present a problem for the Bills' secondary.
Tight end Anthony Fasano will be an issue for the Bills linebackers, who continue to struggle containing tight ends. Fasano has just 15 receptions, however, three of them have been for scores.
If the Bills can bring pressure on Moore, expect a few interceptions.
Who Has The Edge: Bills