Sports Betting Lesson From NFL Week 3: Keep Riding The Miami Wave

Written By Matt Perrault on September 24, 2019
sports betting lesson

The Miami Dolphins are tanking the 2019 season. We know this because of the numerous moves the Dolphins made to trade away the little talent that they did have for future draft picks in the 2020 draft and beyond.

The Dolphins now have three first-round picks and two second-round picks already in next April’s draft. The result has been a 0-3 against-the-spread (ATS) start to the year, and gamblers been running to counter every week to bet against Miami no matter the point spread.

For the sportsbooks in this country, the Dolphins create a unique problem. What to do about a team that is trying to lose all its games? We haven’t ever seen it in the NFL, but even before this season the Dolphins were a bad franchise with little talent.

Going into 2019, Miami was 4-7 ATS over its last 11 games as an underdog. In the first three games of this season, the Dolphins were getting seven points in Week 1 and lost by 49 to the Ravens. They were getting 19 points from the Patriots in Week 2 and lost by 43, and then last week were getting 22 points from Cowboys and lost by 25. It has been an absolute train wreck of a season so far.

How to attack an unprecedented situation

This week, the Dolphins are at home against the Chargers. The opening line is LA -16.5 and it’s likely to go up all week.

“What are we going to do about these Dolphins?” said Dave Sharapan of CG Sportsbooks on Pushing The Odds. “I just don’t know where to go with the number. This is going to be an issue (going forward).”

When you hear a sportsbook operator talk like they haven’t seen anything like this before, it’s a good time to ride the wave until the market settles and the trend stops cashing tickets for you. The Dolphins are going to be catching double-digit point spreads for the rest of the season whether they are at home or on the road. However, when they play a team that has playoff aspirations like this week, it’s hard to see how Miami keeps the game within 20 points.

You have to be careful about divisional games, however. Take the Jets on the road at the Patriots last week. New England was laying anywhere from 17 to 23 points depending on the number you got. New York had lost their previous 9 games SU against the Pats on the road but they were 4-4-1 ATS in those games. The Jets covered with a 30-14 loss. Divisional games are always a battle because the teams play each other twice per season but Miami faces the Chargers and Redskins the next two weeks.

Miami has only scored 16 points this season and the under has hit in their last two games because of the lack of offensive production. Even when the Dolphins defense is a complete mess, if the offense is only scoring six points in two weeks combined, the under is also a strong play.

While laying big numbers every week in the NFL isn’t always the best move, Miami has shown little desire to compete. The NFL Competition Committee is so concerned they announced they will be doing an investigation into how the Dolphins are handling this season.

Until Miami shows some sign of life, betting against the Dolphins and the under should be in consideration every week.

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