Miami Dolphins to open vs. Patriots, play Bills and Jets in prime time

The Dolphins and rival Jets will square off under the lights on Dec. 1, one of just two prime-time games for Miami this season.

04/24/2014 12:01 AM

04/24/2014 3:46 PM

Monday night in the Big Apple? Turn on those bright lights.

A nationally televised Dec. 1 visit to MetLife Stadium against the new York Jets highlights a Dolphins schedule that includes three of the final four games at home.

A year after getting three prime-time games, the Dolphins were awarded just two, including the one obligatory Thursday night commitment. That game will be played at home against the Buffalo Bills on Nov. 13 on NFL Network.

Schedule-makers again passed over Miami for a premium Sunday night game, although the Dolphins will have more chances than ever to be rescheduled into that time slot. The league has moved up the flex period for NBC to Week 5. The Dolphins haven’t appeared on Sunday Night Football since 2010.

The Dolphins, coming off an 8-8 season, will open and close the year at home against divisional opponents. The New England Patriots will be in town on Sept. 7. The Jets will again end the season at Sun Life Stadium; Miami’s 20-7 Week 17 loss to New York last year knocked it out of the playoff race.

“Our organization is excited about the schedule, and we look forward to playing our home opener in front of our great fans,” Dolphins coach Joe Philbin said. “We also start our season with two division opponents, travel to London and finish the year with two home games. As always, our offseason program and training camp will be paramount in preparing us for the upcoming season.”

Visits to Buffalo and London (where the Dolphins will face the Oakland Raiders) sandwich a Week 3 home date with the Kansas City Chiefs. The game abroad will be held at Wembley Stadium, with a 1 p.m. start time.

After their Week 5 bye, the Dolphins get into the meat of their nonconference schedule. The Green Bay Packers come to town on Oct. 12, followed by visits to the Chicago Bears and Jacksonville Jaguars.

The Dolphins then alternate home and road games in November (vs. the San Diego Chargers, at Detroit Lions, vs. Buffalo, at Denver Broncos) ahead of their Monday night showdown with the Jets.

In December, the Dolphins play just one game against a 2013 playoff team — at New England in Week 15. The week before, they will host the Baltimore Ravens, then finish at home against the Minnesota Vikings and Jets.

All but four games are tentatively scheduled to begin at 1 p.m.

Because of the rotation of the schedule, the Dolphins will host the Packers and Vikings for the first time since 2006. This will be just Miami’s 14th meeting with Green Bay in the Dolphins’ 49-year history; Miami owns a 10-3 all-time edge.

Other notes from Wednesday night’s announcement:

• Miami opens the season with two divisional opponents in a row for the first time since 1998. It’s the eighth time the Dolphins begin the season against the Patriots and the fourth time that game is at home.
• The Dolphins have won their past four meetings with the Raiders and 10 of the past 12.
• San Diego hasn’t visited Miami in consecutive seasons since 1982 and ’83; the host Dolphins beat the Chargers 20-16 last fall.
• Two of the Dolphins’ five all-time wins against the Ravens have come in overtime.
• The Dolphins have their bye in October for the sixth consecutive season.

Prospects visit

The Dolphins continue to meet with prospects ahead of the NFL Draft that begins on May 8, summoning North Dakota State tackle Billy Turner and Liberty cornerback Walt Aikens to their Davie complex. Miami has also expressed interest in Michigan State linebacker Max Bullough, a mid-round prospect.

Miami Herald sportswriter Barry Jackson contributed to this report.

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