Opportunity knocks for Miami Dolphins in Week 2 against Bills

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The Miami Dolphins will be entertaining company this weekend — the Buffalo Bills are coming to town for a Sunday clash that will put the Dolphins into a pristine opportunity. This is about more than just the Buffalo Bills and Week 2 of the 2021 NFL season: Sunday against Buffalo has the opportunity to be a statement for the Miami Dolphins.

Ironically enough, the Buffalo Bills of 2020 found themselves in similar shoes last year: the team was fresh off a 10-win season with a young quarterback who was highly criticized. And the Bills were, generally speaking, a team that many were still hesitant to buy into. Buffalo proceeded to win 13 games and shred their franchise record books for offense.

And this isn’t to say that the 2021 Miami Dolphins are going to be ‘The Greatest Show on Surf’ this year. But Miami can absolutely, positively declare themselves as legitimate with their play on Sunday against the Bills.

From a postseason and divisional leverage perspective, you can’t put a price on how valuable a win would be for Miami in Week 2 over the Bills. As things currently stand, the Dolphins stand alone atop the AFC East as the only team with a win after Week 1. A win for Miami in Week 2 over Buffalo would give Miami effectively a two and a half game lead over the Bills in the division (with far too much of the season left to start counting down magic numbers or anything of the sort). And they’re already a game and a half ahead of the Patriots thanks to the head to head win from Week 1.

They say that the quickest way to ensure you make the postseason is to win within your division. Miami, with a win on Sunday against Buffalo; would be 2-0 in the AFC East with two games left to play against the New York Jets — a rebuilding team who figures to be a year or two away from serious contention.

There are no shortage of ways to frame a potential Dolphins win on Sunday against the Bills and the value it would bring to this 2021 early season stretch. It’s currently hard to get a feel for how good this team can be, given that their win came against a new-look Patriots squad that featured a bunch of fresh faces in new places in 2021. But the Bills? That’s a litmus test we can all appreciate, given Buffalo’s continuity from 2020 to 2021. And if Miami can win this one, the Dolphins’ announcement of legitimacy would be loud and clear.