Poll results: Dolphins will finish 9-7

Miami Dolphins fans have spoken.

ESPN.com’s Dolphins page this week ran a poll to predict the team’s final record. Miami is currently 6-6 and fighting for the final wild card in the AFC. The Dolphins most likely will have to finish 9-7 or better to have a chance.

About 58 percent of those who voted think Miami will go 3-1 the rest of the way. That was by far the highest total.

The Dolphins have a huge game coming up Sunday at the Pittsburgh Steelers (5-7). Miami will then host the New England Patriots (9-3), visit the Buffalo Bills (4-8) and welcome the New York Jets (5-7) in the regular-season finale.

The toughest opponent on the schedule is clearly the Patriots. New England beat Miami 27-17 in Foxborough, Mass., earlier this season. The Dolphins, who will be underdogs, will try to split the season series when they meet on Dec. 15.

I think the biggest key is Sunday’s game. The Steelers are not a great team, but winning in Pittsburgh is never easy. In fact, Miami has not won in Pittsburgh since 1990. The Dolphins have a lot of bad history going against them.

But if Miami can somehow find a way to end that losing streak in Pittsburgh, it could set the table for a nice December run. Three wins may be enough to get the Dolphins in. I’m skeptical, but it appears many fans expect it to happen.