Dolphins still underdogs to JV Patriots

AccuScore's microchips are going to have extra trouble in Week 17.

They can compute an NFL matchup a bajillion statistical ways to Sunday, but can they factor indifference?

AccuScore certainly will try and assume the New England Patriots will rest key starters in Sunday's game against the Miami Dolphins in Gillette Stadium. Even so, the Patriots won 70 percent of simulations by an average of 7.5 points.

The Patriots already have the AFC's top seed and home-field advantage locked up. But will Patriots coach Bill Belichick rest them for the whole game, half the game, a quarter, at all?

As ESPN analyst and former Patriots linebacker Tedy Bruschi noted, resting players too much the week before a bye could be a problem.

So the game could be more lopsided than AccuScore projects if the Patriots don't pull any punches.

For the record, Chad Henne averaged a 69 passer rating in AccuScore's 10,000 simulations. He threw at least two interceptions 38 percent of the time. In those games, the Dolphins won just 13 percent.

AccuScore's most promising formula for the Dolphins is a balanced game, with Henne throwing at least two touchdown passes and Ricky Williams and Ronnie Brown averaging at least 4 yards per carry. When that happened in the sims, Miami won 52 percent of the time.