Brady has beaten Miami seven straight times. He will be going for his eighth consecutive victory against Miami on Sunday when the Dolphins (7-6) host the Patriots (10-3) in a big game with playoff implications.
Defensive end Olivier Vernon and the Dolphins know pressuring Patriots QB Tom Brady will be the key to ending his seven-game winning streak against them.
The Dolphins need to beat the Patriots to remain in firm standing for the final wild card in the AFC. Miami knows the biggest key to victory is to disrupt Brady.
"He's human like anybody else," Dolphins defensive end Cameron Wake said Wednesday. "You do your best to make him uncomfortable. I'm sure he doesn't like getting hit, like anybody else wouldn't like it."
Miami's defense is hitting its stride at the right time. Its pass rush, in particular, has picked up.
The Dolphins have 13 sacks over the past four games, led by Olivier Vernon with seven. Wake has two sacks in that span and four other Miami defenders -- Jared Odrick, Dion Jordan, Koa Misi and Paul Soliai -- have one sack apiece. The Dolphins also sacked Brady three times in a 27-17 loss to the Patriots in October.
"As long as he's behind the center, it's going to be tough," Dolphins safety Reshad Jones said. "We're going to have to be on our keys and do everything right."
The Dolphins come into this game with momentum. They are 2-0 in December and have won three of their past four, positioning themselves for this playoff push.
Miami has a slim margin for error and is a tiebreaker behind the Baltimore Ravens (7-6) for the final wild card in the AFC. There is a sense of urgency for the Dolphins entering this big game against Brady and the Patriots.
"As we've said to the team, there's nothing to wait for," Dolphins head coach Joe Philbin said. "If you're not going to play your best football this time of the year in the position we're in, what are you waiting for? There's not going to be any other times."