Dolphins play Pats, Bills four times in 6 weeks
4 prime-time games in ’17.
The Dolphins will open the 2017 season at home Sept. 10 against Tampa Bay, but it’s the ending of their schedule that might be the biggest attention-getter, because it seems to be the toughest stretch.
Among the Dolphins’ final six games are two against Super Bowl champion New England (Nov. 26 and Dec. 11) and two against Buffalo (Dec. 17 and Dec. 31), a pair of AFC East rivals that have given the Dolphins problems in recent years. Also included in that stretch is as a home game against Denver (Dec. 3) and a road game at Kansas City (Dec. 24).
And in a bit of a twist, the Dolphins won’t have a bye week following their Oct. 1 game against New Orleans in London. Rather they’ll come back home to host Tennessee on Oct. 8. All those details were revealed Thursday night with the league’s release of its full 2017 schedule.
The Dolphins were 10-6 last season and made their first playoff appearance since 2008 under first-year coach Adam Gase, and apparently that’s drawn them nationwide interest.
The Dolphins will play four primetime games. Two of those are Monday night games, the first time that’s happened since
The Dolphins’ primetime games are Thursday night, Oct. 26 at Baltimore, followed by a Sunday night game against Oakland on Nov. 5 at Hard Rock Stadium, a Monday Night game on Nov. 13 at Carolina, and the Dec. 11Monday night game at New England.
And for those wondering about the Dolphins’ built-in home-field advantage — the stifling South Florida humidity in September – its effectiveness might be reduced. The only 1 p.m. home game in September is the opener against Tampa Bay, a team that figures to be somewhat acclimated to the conditions because of its location.
The Dolphins already knew they were playing New Orleans at 9:30 a.m. on Oct .1 at London’s Wembley Stadium. The Dolphins will only have seven home games at Hard Rock Stadium because the New Orleans game is technically a home game. The Dolphins are playing there because of a NFL regulation that requires teams that host a Super Bowl to play in London within five years of being awarded the game. The Dolphins are hosting Super Bowl LIV in 2020.
The Dolphins’ bye week is in Week 11 (Nov. 19).
The Dolphins, according to a source, asked the league not to schedule their bye week following the London game. Even though there’s extended travel coming home from that trip, teams generally prefer to have the bye closer to midseason to break up the monotony and recover from injuries.
The Dolphins had bye weeks following their London games in 2014 and 2016.
Last season, Indianapolis had a bye in Week 10 instead of following its Week 4 game against Jacksonville in London. The Colts lost to the Jaguars, 30-27, in London but won at home the following week against Chicago, 29-23.
After opening against Tampa Bay, the Dolphins hit the road against the Chargers (Sept.17) and the New York Jets (Sept. 24).
Then it’s off the London for the Saints gameto end the first quarter of the season.
The Dolphins don’t have more any extended roads trips or homestands. They don’t playmore than two consecutive road games or two consecutive home games.
The Dolphins are 3-2 in their past five season openers. Last year’s 12-10 loss at Seattle in the opener, which was also coach Adam Gase’s debut, snapped a three-year winning streak in openers.
The Dolphins have opened on the road four of the previous five seasons, going 2-2 in those games.