The Dolphins almost got a big gift on Sunday when the Cleveland Browns took a late lead against Denver, but they couldn't hold on and the Broncos came back to win it in overtime. That means Miami's margin of error was greatly reduced, starting with Monday night's game against Philadelphia.

The Denver victory assured that the Broncos will win any wild-card tiebreaker with the Dolphins because they are now assured of finishing with a better conference record.

And Tennessee's victory over Buffalo Sunday also didn't help the Dolphins.

Coach Dave Wannstedt said last week the Dolphins needed to win two of their last three games, but that means the Dolphins would then have to count on Denver losing its last two, at Indianapolis and at Green Bay.

The bottom line is the Dolphins need Denver to lose at least one game to have any shot at making the playoffs (this is assuming Tennessee will get in, which is a pretty good bet).

Should the Dolphins lose one of their remaining games, then Denver would have to lose both of their final two games for Miami to quality for the postseason.

So it's plain to see Monday night's matchup against Philly is a huge game for the Dolphins.

What follows is a preview of the Dolphins-Eagles matchup.

WHO: Miami Dolphins (8-5) vs. Philadelphia Eagles (10-3)

WHEN: Monday, 9 p.m. ET

WHERE: Pro Player Stadium, Miami, Fla.

TV: ABC (Al Michaels, play-by-play; John Madden, analysis; Lisa Guerrero, sidelines)

LINE: Dolphins by 2

NFL RANKINGS: Dolphins — 28th in the NFL in total offense, 17th in rushing offense, 29th in passing offense, 11th in total defense, 3rd in rushing defense, 24th in passing defense

Eagles — 20th in the NFL in total offense, 8th in rushing offense, 26th in passing offense, 18th in total defense, 22nd in rushing defense, 17th in passing defense

COACHES: Dolphins, Dave Wannstedt (4th year with team); Eagles, Andy Reid (5th year with team)

SERIES RECORD: The Dolphins lead 7-3

LAST FIVE MEETINGS: 1999 at Miami, Dolphins 16, Eagles 13; 1996 at Philadelphia, Eagles 35, Dolphins 28; 1993 at Philadelphia, Dolphins 19, Eagles 14; 1990 at Miami, Dolphins 23, Eagles 20 (OT); 1987 at Philadelphia, Dolphins 28, Eagles 10

INJURIES: Dolphins — DE Rob Burnett (knee) is out/IR; DT Tim Bowens (calf) and QB Jay Fiedler (knee) are questionable; LB Morlon Greenwood (quad), K Olindo Mare (ankle), LB Junior Seau (shoulder/finger), DE Jason Taylor (shoulder), LB Zach Thomas (hip) and S Shawn Wooden (ankle) are probable.

Eagles — FS Clinton Hart (hip) is questionable; FS Brian Dawkins (foot), CB Bobby Taylor (foot), WR James Thrash (thumb) and G John Welbourn (knee) are probable.

Dolphins Report Top Stories