NE-MIA grades: Brady adds new weapon in Floyd entering playoffs

Pro Football Focus reveals the highest-graded players and top takeaways from the Patriots' NFL Week 17 win over the Dolphins.

| 5 months ago
(Eric Espada/Getty Images)

(Eric Espada/Getty Images)

NE-MIA grades: Brady adds new weapon in Floyd entering playoffs

New England Patriots 35, Miami Dolphins 14

Here are the key takeaways, along with the highest-graded players, from New England’s 35-14 victory over Miami.

New England Patriots

Quarterback grade: Tom Brady, 85.7

Brady continues MVP-level play

Tom Brady may still come up short in the MVP voting after missing the first four games of the season, but he did everything in his power over the 12 games he saw the field this year to win the award. Sunday was more of the same. He had an absolutely ridiculous adjusted completion percentage of 89.7 Sunday, as five of his incompletions were due to drops, throwaways, or being batted at the line of scrimmage.

Top offensive grades:

LT Nate Solder, 87.1
QB Tom Brady, 85.7
RT Marcus Cannon, 80.1
C David Andrews, 79.9
WR Julian Edelman, 76.9

Floyd makes mark

Michael Floyd made his Pats debut in Week 16, but he had his first real involvement in the game Sunday, and it looked like he picked up the offense quickly. He had an impressive touchdown early where he dragged multiple Dolphins defenders with him into the end zone. Floyd also sprang Julian Edelman’s long touchdown reception with a crushing pancake block down the field. He caught all three of his targets in 29 passing snaps.


Top defensive grades:

DE Trey Flowers, 86.8
LB Elandon Roberts, 82.9
CB Logan Ryan 81.9
CB Malcolm Butler, 78.1
DE Jabaal Sheard, 77.7

Flowers a budding star

Trey Flowers’ development over the second half of the season has been one of the biggest stories for the Patriots heading into the playoffs. His 29 snaps Sunday produced a career-high grade as he notched two hits and four stops against the run. Since the start of Week 10, he’s been the 16th-highest-graded edge player in the NFL.

Miami Dolphins

Quarterback grade: Matt Moore, 63.5

Crumbling under pressure

Matt Moore was only under pressure on 10 of his 34 dropbacks Sunday, but they were the difference in the game. On those plays he went 2-of-10 for 27 yards and threw an interception. When there was no pressure he was a ridiculous 22-for-24 for 184 yards and two touchdowns. It was a far cry from the previous two weeks, where his passer rating was 133.1 under pressure.


Top offensive grades:

LT Branden Albert, 82.3
RT Ja’Wuan James, 79.2
LG Laremy Tunsil, 78.3
RB Jay Ajayi, 74.0
WR Jarvis Landry, 71.3

Bushrod still a liability

Jay Ajayi was robbed of another good chance at going for 100 yards in this one solely through the play of right guard Jermon Bushrod. The rest of the line was having a solid day, yet Bushrod blew up run after run. It was nothing new for PFF’s lowest-graded run-blocking guard this year, but it stood out like a sore thumb contrasted with the play of the Dolphins tackles.

Top defensive grades:

DT Jordan Phillips, 84.6
DE Cameron Wake, 79.4
CB Bobby McCain, 79.1
LB Kiko Alonso, 79.1
S Michael Thomas, 77.6

Suh a non-factor

With the enticing possibility of taking down Tom Brady in the forecast it was surprising to see Ndamukong Suh have such a dud. He totaled one singular hurry on 32 pass rushes and was moved off the line mightily on multiple run plays. Obviously it was a near-meaningless game for the Dolphins, but it was still a season-low 42.3 grade for the defensive tackle.

PFF Game-Ball Winner: Patriots QB Tom Brady

PFF’s player grading process includes multiple reviews, which may change the grade initially published in order to increase its accuracy. Learn more about how we grade and access grades for every player through each week of the NFL season by subscribing to Player Grades.

| Senior Analyst

Mike is a Senior Analyst at Pro Football Focus. His work has also been featured on The Washington Post, ESPN Insider, and 120 Sports.

  • AJ

    Interesting observation about Brady: his completion percentage this season under pressure is not that different from what it was when he was though to be on the decline, but his passer rating is much higher, which just means that his completions under pressure are going for much bigger plays than before.

    Also, at this point in the year, New England’s o-line is back to being one of the game’s best as they have been for most of Brady’s career after spending the past few years as a liability. The o-line returning to being a great unit, as well as good health (aside from Gronk), has also played a huge role in Brady’s season.

    • Robert Anasi

      Any given Sunday but with Gronk this team is top in the league. If Floyd continues to pick up the playbook quickly, he could be a major difference maker – he’s the best big receiver they’ve had since Moss. The defense still has some question marks and they have yet to face a great offense. KC could give them a test, as could Pittsburgh. Dallas and Green Bay are also dangerous, and the Giants have the same DC as the two SB upsets. Still, they should be favored, and for good reason, in every playoff game.

  • JJ Watt eat dirt

    Miami didn’t even care about this game