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Scouting Report - Week 16 - Bills-Dolphins


**Top 3 Individual Matchups
1 - Marcell Dareus vs. Kraig Urbik

**Dareus did not play in the first meeting between the two teams, and Kraig Urbik was not the starting center for the Dolphins. But he is now and will be facing his former Bills teammate. Urbik will need some help to keep Dareus from disrupting the pocket in passing situations.

2 - Jordan Mills vs. Cameron WakeIn the first meeting Wake had 1.5 sacks and two quarterback hits. Now fully recovered from his offseason Achilles surgery, Wake has seven sacks in his last seven games. Mills will need some assistance to keep the pass rusher at bay.

3 - Nickell Robey-Coleman vs. Jarvis LandryLandry set an NFL record three weeks ago for most receptions in the first three seasons of an NFL career. He has 276 thus far and figures to be a frequent target of backup turned starting QB Matt Moore. If Robey-Coleman has trouble with Landry's superior size, the Bills may turn to Kevon Seymour. Bills Top 2 Advantages
Good advantage - Red zone offense
Miami's defense is just middle of the pack when it comes to keeping opponents out of their end zone when defending inside their own 20-yard line. Almost 55 percent of the time their opponents get six. Buffalo has the third-highest red zone touchdown percentage in the league, as they're scoring two out of every three times they crack an opponent's red zone (66%)

Best advantage - Run gameNot much needs to be said about Buffalo's top ranked rushing attack. The Bills didn't have a healthy LeSean McCoy in the first meeting, as he pulled out of the game at halftime. On Saturday they'll have their feature back. Facing the 30th ranked run defense could make for a productive day on the ground for an offense that just rolled up 280 rushing yards last week.

Bills Number 1 Must
Limit big plays
Buffalo has to keep Miami's big plays to a minimum both on the ground and through the air. Jay Ajayi cannot be arm tackled, so Buffalo defenders must rally to the football when he's running it. QB Matt Moore loves to throw the deep ball, so getting beat over the top just cannot happen. Buffalo has tied things down better on the back end of late. That must continue for the Bills to be in position to win.

**Scouting Eye
Slow starters

**Miami's offense has certainly improved as the season has worn on, but if there's been one persistent problem it's getting off to fast starts. The Dolphins have been outscored in the first quarter this season by an almost 3:1 margin. Opponents have scored 96 points in the first quarter to Miami's 34. And this is a trend that has only gotten worse of late. The Dolphins have been shut out in the first quarter in four of their last five games.

Streaky stealersThe Dolphins currently stand fourth in the league in total takeaways with 25. Sixteen of those have come via interception as Miami has the fourth-highest interception rate in the league (7.8%). Their opportunistic defense has been particularly hot of late. Nineteen of their 25 takeaways have come in their last seven games. It's the most turnovers by the Dolphins in a seven-game span in three years.

Quick strike attackThough the Dolphins have Jay Ajayi to grind out yards on the ground, they don't always need him to put the offense on his back. They have quick strike capabilities as evidenced by their 47 points scored off drives of four plays or less, which ranks eighth in the league. In fact three of their last four scoring drives have lasted four plays or less.

It speaks to Matt Moore's willingness to push the ball down the field. Last week in his first start in five years he hit Kenny Stills for a 52-yard touchdown on a three-play scoring drive and then Jarvis Landry for a 66-yard touchdown on a one-play scoring drive.

2nd half horseBuffalo's defense knows all too well what Jay Ajayi is capable of after he rumbled for more than 200 yards rushing against them in Week 7. Ajayi had 115 of those yards in the second half against the Bills and was instrumental in staging a come from behind win. Ajayi owns two of the top four largest second-half rushing totals in the NFL this season and is fifth in the league in second-half rushing with 542 yards on 99 carries (5.47 avg.)

A bullseye on third downWhen the Dolphins are facing any kind of third down situation that's more than a yard, there's a good chance Jarvis Landry is the primary option. The Miami receiver is currently tied for third in the league with 25 third down receptions. In fact almost a third of Landry's 1,031 receiving yards this season have come on third down.

Beware of blocksBuffalo's kicking units will need to be on alert for Walt Aikens. The safety, who also played on special teams has turned in a pair of blocks each of the last two weeks. Two weeks ago against Arizona, Aikens took a blocked extra point attempt to the end zone for a two-point defensive conversion. Last week against the Jets he blocked a punt and returned that for an 11-yard touchdown.

Buffalo Chips
Quote of the week
"I was there on the sidelines and it was a painful game for me to watch. But I'm happy to be here this time around and I'm going to do the best I can to make my presence noticeable."
DT Marcell Dareus (who was injured for the first meeting with the Dolphins)

Stat of the weekThe Dolphins rank 31st in the NFL in number of run plays allowed of 20 yards or more. They've given up 15 this season. The Bills are first in the NFL in run plays of 20 yards or more with 23.

Milestones in reachPreston Brown needs one tackle to record 110 on the season and pair with Zach Brown (130) to be the first Buffalo due since Angelo Crowell (126) and John DiGiorgio (112) in 2007 to both record over 110 tackles.

Mike Gillislee needs 54 rushing yards to reach 500 on the season and join LeSean McCoy and Tyrod Taylor as the third trio in franchise history to each record over 500 yards rushing in the same season (1962, 2015).

Tyrod Taylor needs 49 rushing yards to break his own Bills single-season rushing record by a quarterback.

Kyle Williams will play in his 150th career game.

Final noteBuffalo needs 147 rushing yards to move into fifth place for the most rushing yards in a season in franchise annals.

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