There seems to be an interesting debate among some Dolphins players as to what kind of team exactly they wil play Sunday when the New England Patriots come to town.
The Patriots, you may know, have won three Super Bowls this millineum while playing in the game another two times. They're .670 winning percentage (including the postseason) is the best in the league since 1994. They've won every AFC East division title since 2001 except for 2002 and 2008.
And this year, New England is leading the division, leading the NFL in points per game, and they have a future Hall of Fame quarterback named Tom Brady.
So how do some Dolphins react to this resume?
"They're just another team," quarterback Ryan Tannehill said today. "They're a really good team. They've won a lot of games this year. But it's not something that affects us."
That is not a singular opinion. Middle linebacker Karlos Dansby agrees the Patriots are a good team. But does he think their reputation allows them a certain degree of prestige?
"No," he said.
"Why?" he answered.
"A lot of teams have been among the elite," Dansby said. "Everybody has prestige behind their organization. What makes them different than anybody else?
"Every team in the AFC East has prestige behind them -- even the Buffalo Bills. [Sheesh], they went to the Super Bowl four times in a row and didn't win it. So playing them is just like playing the New England Patriots."
If confidence is something you admire, then you're in heaven right now. By the same token, if giving the opponent something to fume about is a problem for you, then this also fits the bill. My take is that true or not, whether they are just another team or not, the Patriots will turn this into an internal topic of discussion.
But leave it to ripe and wise veteran running back Reggie Bush to want no part of the conversation. He clearly disagrees with Tannehill and Dansby.
"No, I don't think they're just another team," Bush said. "They've kind of been at the top for a while now. The body of work they've put out, the foundation they've laid out kind of speaks to their organization, to their program, to the character of players they got over there. So I have nothing but respect for those guys over there."