Let’s go back to the 1990s. For most of the decade, the Buffalo Bills and Miami Dolphins were among the elite teams in all of the AFC. The two met in the playoffs four times during the 90s, with Buffalo edging Miami out three times. It stood as one of the best rivalries given the fact that almost every time the two teams met, the game always seemed to have meaning, whether it be for the division or possibly advancing to a Super Bowl. Could we see a return to those days soon?
Both the Bills and the Dolphins are very young teams, and while the Bills seem to be finished with their rebuild under head coach Sean McDermott, Miami is right in the thick of theirs after drafting their hopeful franchise quarterback, Tua Tagovailoa. While bringing along their rookie quarterback, they are hoping head coach Brian Flores, whose background is with the defensive side of the ball, can build a defense Tagovailoa can lean on, similar with Josh Allen and the Bills. This past free-agency period, Miami seemed to load up on defense, signing players like Shaq Lawson, Byron Jones, and Kyle Van Noy.
You can’t help but notice some similarities with how the Bills and Dolphins have been built—strong defenses while guiding young quarterbacks along slowly. The formula seems to have worked in Buffalo so far, and now Miami is hoping they can copy that success. While I don’t expect the Dolphins to contend this year for a division title, I do expect them to give teams a lot of tough times based on coaching. Brian Flores did a wonderful job guiding a team with minimal talent to a 5-11 record. They have added some more talent to their roster and I expect with Flores at the helm it will continue. If that is true, Buffalo and Miami may be meeting more than just twice a year, and a rivalry that has been dormant for pretty much three decades will be alive and well again.