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Dolphins vs. Bills: Interview with Buffalo Rumblings Editor-in-Chief Brian Galliford

Dolphins RB Lamar Miller takes on Bills FS Jairus Byrd last season.

I had the opportunity to preview Sunday’s game between the Dolphins and Bills by picking the brain of Buffalo Rumblings editor-in-chief Brian Galliford.

Be sure to check out Buffalo Rumblings, which is arguably the best Bills blog on the web, and follow the site on twitter for more coverage of Sunday’s divisional matchup. My questions for Brian and his answers are below:

Dolphins Gab: Many Dolphins fans are curious about quarterback Thad Lewis. Are you 100 percent convinced he starts on Sunday despite a sprained foot? Do you believe the success he had versus the Bengals is sustainable?

Brian Galliford: I’m not 100 percent convinced, no, but it’s pretty close to a sure bet. He sprained that foot prior to the fourth quarter of Sunday’s loss to Cincinnati, and not only did he finish the game, but he made a couple of big throws to force overtime. As for the sustainability of his success: yes, it’s absolutely possible, particularly if the Bills are able to continue to run the ball with the success they have this season. It’s obviously no guarantee; he’ll still only be making his third start in Miami, after all.

DG: What is Buffalo’s biggest weakness defensively and how can Miami exploit it on Sunday?

BG: It’s still the secondary, even though they’re getting healthier in that area. For weeks, teams were able to attack the Bills vertically with a great deal of success, even as they subjected themselves to some turnovers and sacks in the face of Mike Pettine’s blitzes in the process. Last week, Cincinnati changed things up and got the ball out of Andy Dalton’s hands quickly, attacking the perimeter of the defense with screens and making life difficult for Stephon Gilmore, who is currently playing with a club on his surgically repaired left hand. Buffalo does an okay job against the run, but they’re susceptible to giving up big plays in the passing game if their pressure isn’t getting home.

DG: If you were Dolphins defensive coordinator Kevin Coyle, how would you scheme to contain Fred Jackson, C.J. Spiller and Tashard Choice?

BG: Watch tape of the Jets game from Week 3, and note how Rex Ryan forced Bills runners to bounce outside into the waiting arms of contain defenders. That’s how you slow down Buffalo’s running attack, and it’s not earth-shattering – force the runners to move laterally, then close. The Bills still ran for 120 yards against the Jets, but Spiller was a non-factor, and a fluky Jackson 59-yard run did most of the work for the team that day.

DG: Buffalo has produced 21.0 sacks through six games. Do you expect Mario Williams and company to dominate one of the league’s worst offensive lines in Miami?

BG: They had better be motivated to do so, because they just got their butts whipped by Cincinnati’s offensive line for four-plus quarters this past Sunday. I’m not expecting much in the way of sack numbers, though, because I expect Miami to follow the Bengals blueprint from a week ago and get the ball out of Ryan Tannehill’s hands as quickly as possible. Miami would be remiss if they didn’t make the Bills prove that they can handle the quick stuff to the perimeter early in Week 7.

DG: The Dolphins-Bills rivalry has lost some of its luster in recent years. Do Bills fans still consider the Dolphins to be the team’s biggest rival?

BG: Some Bills fans still consider the Dolphins to be the team’s foremost rival, but it’s certainly nothing like it used to be. Perhaps someday, Ryan Tannehill and EJ Manuel will be battling to keep their teams atop the division while Tom Brady enjoys his retirement. We can dream, right?


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