Kickoff Sunday, Sep 11th 1:00pm Eastern

Patriots (
21.75) at

Dolphins (
24.75)

Over/Under 46.5

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Notes

Key Matchups
Patriots Run D
7th DVOA/10th Yards allowed per carry
Dolphins Run O
14th DVOA/27th Yards per carry
Patriots Pass D
3rd DVOA/18th Yards allowed per pass
Dolphins Pass O
1st DVOA/1st Yards per pass
Dolphins Run D
12th DVOA/17th Yards allowed per carry
Patriots Run O
24th DVOA/26th Yards per carry
Dolphins Pass D
25th DVOA/12th Yards allowed per pass
Patriots Pass O
22nd DVOA/19th Yards per pass

Game Overview ::

By Hilow >>
  • The Patriots have a ton of moving parts heading into 2022, less so in the sense of personnel and more so from an offensive scheme perspective.
  • The overall identity of the Patriots should remain intact, likely focused on the suffocating defense and above average offensive line.
  • Very few scenarios in this game lead to the Patriots controlling the flow, potentially leaving New England in uncomfortable, and recently unfamiliar, territory.
  • If I’m Bill Belichick planning for this contest, I’m placing heavy emphasis on the run game in order to exploit the only true weakness of the Miami defense.
  • There are very few avenues to the game environment turning into something favorable for fantasy production.

How New ENgland Will Try To Win ::

The Patriots enter the season with a new offensive coordinator for the first time since 2012 when Josh McDaniels joined Bill Belichick after a short stint with the Rams. Although not yet officially named the offensive coordinator (which seems to simply be a Belichickian ploy), all signs point to Matt Patricia calling plays (as he did for every snap taken by the first team this preseason). With the change in offensive coordinator comes a shift from the usual Patriot power run game to a more outside zone run scheme, at least that’s what we saw this preseason. We also saw this unit largely struggle under second-year quarterback Mac Jones during the preseason, raising questions as to the efficacy of an offense called by Patricia, who hasn’t even worked on the offensive side of the ball since 2005. That is to say, the change from McDaniels to Patricia, and the resulting expectation heading into the season from this offense, should not be understated. What we can say with a high degree of certainty is that this team’s identity is likely to revolve around the defense and an offensive line that PFF has as their seventh-ranked unit heading into 2022. The embarrassment of riches this team possessed on the defensive side of the ball allowed them to move on from Kyle Van Noy and J.C. Jackson, with Jonathan Jones and Raekwon McMillan set to take over. That should mean we see another dominant year after the Patriots held opponents to only 19.4 points per game in 2021, third-fewest in the league.

The departure of James White (retirement) and injury to Ty Montgomery (ankle) leaves the backfield in a likely tight 1A/1B situation split between incumbents Damien Harris and Rhamondre Stevenson. Reports from camp and preseason seem to indicate the backfield will be far less situational and more aimed at keeping each fresh deep into the game, likely indicating we see each rotating in throughout a drive. That should be considered a boost to the weekly floor of each back as they are likely to see increased pass game work. As mentioned above, the most notable shift in this year’s backfield is a transition away from a power-focused rushing attack towards more outside zone elements, which should theoretically benefit Stevenson more than Harris – but that remains to be seen. The bigger issue I see is the relative incompetence we saw from the offense as a whole during the preseason, which could bring into question their scoring efficiency. As in, the Patriots ranked in the top 10 in total offense in nine of the previous 10 seasons, a trend that could be bucked this year.

Based on the composition of the pass-catching corps and weighed against the strengths of Mac Jones, I expect the overall theme of the passing game to remain relatively static heading into 2022. Basically, DeVante Parker, Jakobi Meyers, Hunter Henry, and Jonnu Smith are best suited to short-to-intermediate work where they are asked to win in the first five yards, leaving only Kendrick Bourne to stretch the field vertically to start the season (dynamic rookie wide receiver Tyquan Thornton was placed on injured reserve and will miss the first four games of the season, at minimum). As such, expect the passing game to focus on moving the chains in a methodical fashion, dinking-and-dunking down the field by limiting mistakes and avoiding long down and distance to go situations. This does two things for our understanding of this unit: (1) if effective, it should lead to high time of possession and minimal overall game volume, and (2) if ineffective, it could put additional strain on a “bend but don’t break” defense.

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By Alex88 >>

OVERVIEW

  • Longtime Offensive Coordinator Josh McDaniels is now gone from NE, to be replaced by a combination of Matt Patricia & Joe Judge
  • Patricia spent six seasons as the Defensive Coordinator for NE before misleading DET for three seasons
  • Judge spent five years as the Special Teams Coordinator for NE before misleading NYG for two seasons
  • Neither has ever served as an Offensive Coordinator in the NFL nor NCAA
  • MIA’s new Head Coach, Mike McDaniel, was SF’s Offensive Coordinator last season (after four seasons as the Run Game Coordinator)
  • He led Jimmy Garoppolo to the NFC Championship game

Mac Jones

  • Jones ($5,400) finished 11th in PFF passing grade in his rookie season
  • He scored 20+ DK pts three times: 22.3 // 24.5 // 25.2
  • MIA has PFF’s 5th ranked secondary
  • MIA ranked 8th in DK ppg allowed to QBs (17.6)
  • Notable opposing QB scores: Matt Ryan 22.4 // Derek Carr 25.2 // Josh Allen 29.5 // Tom Brady 40.7

NE Passing Attack

  • 2021 snap shares: Jakobi Meyers 84.3% // Hunter Henry 67.8% // Nelson Agholor 63.9% // Kendrick Bourne 51.8% // Jonnu Smith 47.6%
  • Target shares: Meyers 23.6% // Henry 14% // Bourne 13.1% // Agholor 12% // Smith 8.4%
  • Meyers ($4,300) scored 20+ DK pts just once, and never hit 100 yards
  • Newcomer DeVante Parker ($4,800) had his worst fantasy output of the past three years in his final season as a Dolphin
  • He never hit 20 DK pts
  • Bourne ($4,200) produced three 20+ DK pt efforts
  • Agholor ($3,400) was the primary deep threat but never hit 20 DK pts
  • MIA ranked 16th in DK ppg allowed to WRs (35.6)
  • Only 2 WRs scored 20+ DK pts against MIA
  • Henry ($3,800) scored 19+ DK pts three times
  • Smith ($2,800) never hit 11 DK pts
  • MIA ranked 17th in DK ppg allowed to TEs (12.9)
  • Notable opposing TE scores: Henry 13.6 // Mark Andrews 18.3

NE Rushing Attack

  • The NE offensive line is ranked 5th by PFF
  • Damien Harris ($5,700) & Rhamondre Stevenson ($5,500) averaged identical YPC (4.6)
  • Stevenson led Harris in yards after contact per attempt (3.26 to 2.75) and in YPRR (1.54 to 1.16)
  • Harris led in TDs 15 to 5
  • Harris’s notable DK scores: 20.1 // 20.8 // 28.3 // 31.3
  • Stevenson’s notable DK scores: 25.7 // 27.4
  • MIA ranked 9th in DK ppg allowed to RBs (21.6)
  • Notable opposing RB scores: Brandon Bolden 20.6 // D’Onta Foreman 22.2

Tua Tagovailoa

  • Tua’s ($5,700) metrics were nothing to write home about last season
  • But under Mike McDaniels, Jimmy Garoppolo ranked 2nd in YPA & 3rd in adjusted completion %
  • Tua managed two notable DK scores: 25.4 // 28.5
  • NE ranked 2nd in DK ppg allowed to QBs (14.7)
  • Notable opposing QB scores: Davis Mills 27.7 // Dak Prescott 31.8 // Josh Allen 34

MIA Passing Attack

  • McDaniels brought in two new weapons for Tua: Tyreek Hill ($6,800) & Cedrick Wilson ($3,900)
  • In his final year as a Chief, Hill was tied for 8th in PFF receiving grade last season & finished 10th in YPRR
  • His 19.1 DK ppg ranked 6th
  • Hill’s GPP winning scores: 27.4 // 27.5 // 35.8 // 40.1 // 50.6
  • In his rookie year, Jaylen Waddle ($6,400) finished 16th in DK ppg (15.7) & 20th in PFF receiving grade
  • Waddle’s GPP winning scores: 25.2 // 29 // 31.7
  • Wilson scored 15+ DK pts four times in his final year as a Cowboy: 18.7 // 18.8 // 20.4 // 31.9
  • NE ranked 4th in DK ppg allowed to WRs (30.3)
  • Notable opposing WR scores: Stefon Diggs 21.5 // Isaiah McKenzie 32.4
  • TE Mike Gesicki ($4,800) finished 12th in DK ppg (10.2), 11th in PFF receiving grade, 9th in YPC, & 12th in YPRR
  • His notable DK scores: 16.7 // 18.6 // 21.5 // 22.5
  • NE ranked 1st in DK ppg allowed to TEs (6.7)
  • No opposing TE scored 15 pts

MIA Rushing Attack

  • McDaniels revamped the RB room as well, bringing in Chase Edmonds ($5,200) from ARI & Raheem Mostert ($4,800) from his days in SF
  • Playing behind James Conner, Edmonds still managed two notable scores last year: 20.9 // 26.7
  • Now age 30, Mostert may have been poised for a strong year last season but he went down after just 4 snaps and never returned to the field
  • He had four 20+ pt DK games in 2019, and one in 2020
  • NE ranked 18th in DK ppg allowed to RBs (23.8)
  • Notable opposing RB scores: Duke Johnson 22.2 // Dontrell Hilliard 22.3 // Jonathan Taylor 26