Miami Dolphins linebacker echoes familiar message ahead of crucial showdown vs. Buffalo Bills

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Gregory Fisher-USA TODAY Sports

Miami Dolphins linebacker Jerome Baker issued an honest assessment of the team’s Sunday night matchup against the Buffalo Bills in Week 18 of the NFL season.

With a win, Miami can capture the AFC East title and the No. 2 seed in the AFC for the postseason.

“I just wanna win,” Baker said, according to NFL Network’s Cameron Wolfe. “I’m tired of losing to Buffalo.”

It’s a familiar message from Baker, as he also said he was tired of losing to Buffalo after the Bills knocked off the Dolphins earlier this season. Miami now has a chance to make a statement with the NFL world watching.

Baker has been with the Dolphins since the 2018 season, and he was drafted by Miami in the third round of the 2018 NFL Draft.

Since Baker was drafted, the Bills and Dolphins have faced off 12 times, including last season’s playoff matchup. The Dolphins have gone just 2-10 in those games.

Week 18 means a ton for both sides, as the Bills may need a win to get into the playoffs.

With the Pittsburgh Steelers and Houston Texans winning on Saturday, the Bills would be eliminated with a loss to the Dolphins and a Jacksonville Jaguars win over the Tennessee Titans.

As for Miami, the team has already clinched a playoff spot, but a loss would cost the Dolphins a chance at a home game in the first round.

Baker has played in 12 games for Miami this season but missed the team’s last four matchups due to injury. Fortunately, he appears on track to return for Week 18 after the Dolphins activated him from injured reserve on Saturday.

This season, Baker has made 69 combined tackles, 1.5 sacks, two interceptions and two tackles for loss for the Miami defense.

As mentioned, the Dolphins lost their lone matchup with the Bills earlier this season in Buffalo. The defense gave up 48 points to the Bills, and Baker finished that game with just five tackles.

Miami, which is 7-1 at home this season, is hoping that playing at Hard Rock Stadium will give the team an edge in Week 18.

For Baker and company, it would be great to win the division, but if the team can knock Buffalo out of the playoffs (it will know if it can depending on the Jacksonville-Tennessee result), it would make a win on Sunday even sweeter.

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Peter is a graduate of Quinnipiac University where he covered the MAAC and college basketball for three years. He has worked for NBC Sports, the Connecticut Sun and the Meriden Record-Journal covering basketball and other major sports. Follow him on Twitter @peterdewey2.