Four ways how Dolphins can make playoffs. And details on big nights for Gaskin and Hollins

The Miami Dolphins can simplify their playoff path by beating the Buffalo Bills in New York State this coming Sunday. If you win, you will be there.
But if the Dolphins lose this game, Miami - to make the playoffs - needs one of the NFL's worst teams to beat a team in direct competition with the Dolphins for a playoff spot. In some cases, they also need additional help.
If the dolphins lose in Buffalo, there are three ways Miami can make the postseason:
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▪ When Cleveland loses at the Jets on Sunday and then loses to Pittsburgh at home. The Browns will do without their top five recipients on Sunday due to an injury (Odell Beckham Jr.) or COVID-19 contact pursuit (four players, including Jarvis Landry).
▪ When Indianapolis loses in Pittsburgh on Sunday and then loses to Jacksonville at home.
▪ When Baltimore loses its regular season finale to Cincinnati.
If Miami lost to the Bills, the Dolphins would win tiebreakers against the Browns, Colts, or Ravens in these three specific scenarios above, as Miami would have a better conference record.
The Ravens Giants game on Sunday has no impact on the Dolphins' playoff chances for the reasons explained here.
And even if the Tennessee Titans lost their last two games in Green Bay and Houston, the Titans (who would be 10-6 in this scenario) would win a playoff tiebreaker with Miami (conference record) if the Dolphins lose in Buffalo to to finish 10-6.
Running back and wide receiver will be high on the list of Dolphins requirements to consider in the 2021 draft.
But even with that reality, the Dolphins would never have scored 10 wins on Saturday without big contributions from a running back and receiver who appeared to be in the bubble just to form the team in June.
Myles Gaskin, who missed six of the last seven games with a knee injury and COVID-19, returned with his best game as a professional: 14 carry for 87 yards of rushing (6.2 per carry) and 5 catches for 82 yards, including two Touchdowns - nothing more important than taking a short pass from Ryan Fitzpatrick and racing 59 yards for a late touchdown, a lead that proved short-lived.
Gaskin's 169 yards total was the most scrimmage yards a Dolphins player had in any game since Kenyan Drake retreated 193 against New England on December 11, 2017 - the game ending with a game called The Miami Miracle.
Plus, Gaskin's two touchdowns were the most in a game of dolphins running back since Reggie Bush had two against Buffalo in 2012.
Gaskin credited Mike Gesicki and Hollins with key blocks on his 59 yard TD.
"I was thrown around after the catch and I saw my dogs out there, Mack and Mike," he said. "I saw Mike's block, I didn't really see Mack's block. He told me about it. It was great."
Gaskin, a former seventh round tip, now has 564 yards with 4.2 per carry in nine games, including six starts.
In the meantime, Hollins has done a great job getting his 34 yard catch, which scored Jason Sanders' game-winning field goal, on both feet.
"I'm not sure what happened from the start," said Hollins. "I'm sure" Fitz "(Ryan Fitzpatrick) did something - they usually follow quarterback eyes when security or corners go to places they shouldn't be.
"I'm not sure how he got the ball in the first place [for an obvious face mask penalty]. If I had to guess, I'd say one of the security precautions followed the quarterback eyes and got me in the back."
This is how Fitzpatrick - whose helmet was turned to Hollins on this throw - described this great game:
“You'd take two safeguards and play pretty quietly. We had Mike who went straight down the pipe and had a 20 yard cut behind him. I just wanted to see what that security would do on the left. I tried to make him believe I was throwing it to Mike. It was a desperate throw, but I wanted to put it on the sidelines for Mack and just hope for good things. In this case, you really throw up a bit of prayer and along with the face mask it was great for us. "
Hollins, who either wanted to be Miami's # 6 recipient in June or wasn't on the team at all, caught two passes for 42 yards and gave him 15 for 173 for the season.
Hollins had dropped a pass on the goal line a few minutes earlier (Miami then opted for a field goal) but he recovered not only with that big late catch but also with a shot block that cleared out a defender at Gaskins 59 yards Catch-and-run touchdown.
"I think as a player you always have to forget the last game, good or bad," he said. “Remembering old things will never do you any good, whether you made a great piece or a drop like me. Over the course of my career I've learned how to put things like this in the past and move on to the next. "
Hollins enjoyed the opportunity to make this great late catch.
"For me, I live for it," he said. "I don't know if there are camera angles, but I smile from ear to ear when we start the scrum just before this game because that's why I play the game. I don't play the game for easy wins and to do things that don't get my blood pumping. For want of better terms, I live for it [expletively]. Plain and simple. "
▪ Although five running backs were available in Miami, all offensive snaps went to two of those backs - Gaskin, 48, and Salvon Ahmed (15).
After Jakeem Grant was limited to 15 snaps due to an ankle injury that paused him in the second half, Hollins played 49 of 63 offensive snaps, with Lynn Bowden logging 58, Isaiah Ford 33 and Malcolm Perry logging one.
The Dolphins played without DeVante Parker, who missed a second straight game with a thigh injury, and Preston Williams, who is in an injured reserve with a foot injury.
In this article
Mike Gesicki
Ryan Fitzpatrick
Myles Gaskin

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