ATS Trends Suggest Making NFL Pick on Dolphins (-1) vs. Chargers

Swinging Johnson

Wednesday, December 16, 2015 7:40 PM UTC

Wednesday, Dec. 16, 2015 7:40 PM UTC

The Dolphins suffered another setback in what has been a season of disappointment. Meanwhile the Chargers are in the midst of a shame spiral which makes this a challenging choice in our NFL picks.


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NFL Pick: San Diego Chargers Against the Spread
Best Line Offered:  -1 (-120) at 5Dimes


Miami Dolphins (5-8 SU, 4-9 ATS)
Heading into Week 15 Dolphins’ fans are more concerned about potential coaches and high draft picks for the 2016 campaign rather than what the next three weeks hold for their supremely disappointing franchise. Whatever elixir Dan Campbell brought to the team in his first two winning weeks as head coach, replacing the terminated Joe Philbin, no longer works as the team has dropped five of their last seven straight up and a money burning 1-6 ATS during that stretch.

If you have fallen victim to chasing the Fish, believing in the “due factor”, and blindly including them in your NFL Picks then I would advise you step away from this motley crew. Monday night the NFL Odds makers installed them as two-point home dogs to the middling at best New York Giants and lo and behold – more of the same. The loss mathematically, and mercifully, put to an end any miracle scenarios that would allow Miami entrance into the postseason had they won their last four remaining games. In addition, the Miami Dolphins will now go seven consecutive seasons without a playoff appearance which sets a dubious franchise record.


San Diego Chargers (3-10 SU, 5-8 ATS)
The San Diego Chargers have been overpromising and under-delivering for several years now which are contributing factors in their fans’ apathy towards all things Chargers. Oh, and it doesn’t help when the owner is publically clamoring for a new city with a new stadium. But I digress. The Bolts, or not so affectionately known as the Dolts by those who know and hate them, have succeeded in doing the unthinkable. They have one of the most prolific passers in the league commanding the fourth ranked passing attack yet have averaged only a field goal per game in three of their last four contests. San Diego now ranks 28th in the league in scoring, posting a modest 19.2 points per game.

Perhaps much of that anemic scoring attack is due to the fact that they are nothing if not predictable offensively. The Bolts have the 31st ranked rushing attack averaging just 79.7 yards per game which essentially allows defenses to key on one thing - the pass. Top draft pick Melvin Gordon, chosen 15th overall, has been a disappointment to be sure. He now has 201 touches on the season and has yet to score his first touchdown.  


Betting Analysis
I am backing the Chargers in this one and it looks like an odd side particularly when you factor in that there is virtually no home field advantage to be gained as the Chargers’ fans, those that are left, have been staying away in droves and they are actually laying points. Oh, did I mention they are 1-6 ATS at Qualcomm Stadium this season?

However the Miami defense will be a walk in the park compared to the pressure Phillip Rivers has felt over the course of his last two games against Denver and Kansas City. This will also be an opportunity to see if Melvin Gordon is just trudging through a freshman slump or if he is the biggest bust of the 2015 first-round draft picks. Miami has the 30th ranked run defense thus if Gordon cannot crack this defensive front then it could spell doom and gloom for his future. I believe there is too much talent there not to break out.

If the Chargers do get their run game in gear it will give Phillip Rivers, a far superior quarterback to Miami’s Ryan Tannehill, just the time he needs to exploit the Fins’ 26th ranked pass defense. San Diego has covered two of their last three games and after they beat Miami on Sunday it will be three of their last four.

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