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Dolphins 2021 Week 14 Power Rankings Roundup

The Miami Dolphins continue their steady climb on the various national power rankings

The Miami Dolphins have reached the upper half of the NFL power rankings following their fifth consecutive victory, the 11-point against the New York Giants at Hard Rock Stadium on Sunday.

That's at least according to three of the seven national outlets whose rankings we use for our weekly roundup: NFL.com, ESPN and Pro Football Network.

As a whole, the Dolphins have moved up from an average of 20.9 among the 32 NFL teams in the seven rankings to 18, which certainly is a long way up from where they were after falling to 1-7 with the loss against the Buffalo Bills at Highmark Stadium on Oct. 31.

Here's a roundup of the 2021 power rankings heading into Week 14, with the previous ranking in parentheses and the comments from each outlet:

Sports Illustrated

Ranking: No. 19 (21)

Analysis: "It’s odd, consistently, how quickly we anoint, or give up, on young NFL quarterbacks. It’s like their development is viewed only in straight lines, all the way up, or all the way down, always “disaster or euphoria” to paraphrase Bill Parcells old quote on playing football in New York. As the Dolphins rattled off their fifth straight win on Sunday, their young QB, Tua Tagovailoa, played at a level reminiscent of his Alabama stardom days, while reminding the world of pro football, once again, that quarterbacks develop at vastly different paces, while beholden to factors like injury and offensive line play that exist outside of their control. The Dolphins will need Tua’s consistency to make a run, especially with games against New England and Tennessee in the final two weeks. And who said the AFC East was the worst division in football? (Again, raises hand sheepishly.)"

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NFL.com

Ranking: No. 18 (24)

Analysis: "Tua Tagovailoa throws a good ball. I'm not exactly offering up Baldy's Breakdown-level football discourse here, but you know a talented passer when you see one, and Tua looks the part. The 2020 No. 5 overall pick possesses great touch and accuracy, and his left-handed motion makes him unique in a football world that has moved away from the southpaw QB in recent years. The Dolphins' winning streak is up to five after a 20-9 conquest over the Giants, and Tua's steady hand, combined with Brian Flores' increasingly ferocious defense, is a pairing that could take Miami from 1-7 to the playoffs."

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ESPN

Ranking: No. 17 (21)

Analysis on which player needs to step it up in the last month: "(Liam) Eichenberg was one of the most highly touted offensive linemen in the 2021 rookie class, and while he has gained quite a bit of experience starting for the Dolphins this season, he has been the team's worst starter statistically. Since Week 9, the beginning of Miami's win streak, Eichenberg owns a 71.4% pass block win rate -- which ranks 162nd out of 164 qualified linemen. His season-long win rate of 76% ranks dead last among 170 qualified players. He is better than he has played and is not in danger of losing his starting job, but a strong finish would be inspiring before the Dolphins enter an offseason loaded with cash and desperate for improvement."

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CBS Sports

Ranking: No. 19 (18)

Analysis: "After losing seven straight, they have won five in a row to get back into the playoff chase. The defense has been outstanding the past month. The bye comes at a bad time this week."

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Pro Football Network

Ranking: No. 15 (23)

Analysis: "The Dolphins are in possession of the second-longest win streak in the NFL. Listen, I’m not positive they can maintain success with the offense’s current form, but it’s working for now, and that’s all that matters. Miami’s Thursday Night Football win against the Baltimore Ravens was impressive. The other four teams they’ve beaten on their streak are the Texans, Jets, Panthers, and Giants. They haven’t had to go out and play in a shootout during that time.  But it might not matter. They’ve adopted the 'Patriot Way' during this run. Miami is allowing other teams to beat themselves. They are playing outstanding defense and avoiding turnovers on offense.  They head to the bye week feeling good. With the Jets, Saints and Titans remaining on the schedule, the Dolphins won’t have to play a different style unless things somehow go awry. There’s a legitimate chance this team is 9-7 heading into Week 18 against the New England Patriots. The Dolphins made the biggest jump in the Week 14 NFL Power Rankings."

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Yahoo Sports

Ranking: No. 23 (25)

Analysis: "For the record, the Dolphins' five opponents during their winning streak: Texans, Ravens, Jets, Panthers, Giants. Their playoff odds on Football Outsiders, before Monday night, were 5.3 percent. It's still a pretty fantastic story in this unpredictable season."

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USA Today

Ranking: No. 22 (22)

Analysis: "Bye week comes at exactly the wrong time for a team that's won five straight. But with Jets on the other side, Fins should continue successful swim against tide."