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Penalty watch: Patriots vs. Dolphins

Every Thursday, we'll explore the New England Patriots' penalty breakdown in comparison with the team's opponent, while adding a few league-wide stats.

Patriots' total penalties: 41

Patriots' total accepted penalties: 33 (fifth-fewest on average)

Dolphins' total accepted penalties: 25 (tied for second-fewest on average)

NFL team with fewest accepted penalties (on average): Colts, with 4.0 per game

NFL team with most accepted penalties: Jets, with 9.14 per game

Most frequent Patriots penalty: Offensive holding (9) and false start (7)

Key stat: The Patriots had a season-high three penalties on special teams in Sunday's 30-27 overtime loss to the Jets.

Most penalized Patriots: G Logan Mankins (4), G Marcus Cannon (3), DE Chandler Jones (3)

Summary: The Dolphins, under coach Joe Philbin, haven't hurt themselves with penalties in 2013. That seems to reflect Philbin's strong fundamental approach. "They're sound, they're tough, they play with good technique and you can see they're well-schooled, well-disciplined," Patriots coach Bill Belichick said. "They make you earn everything you get." ... Walt Anderson is the referee assigned to Sunday's game.