NFL Betting: Dolphins vs. Buccaneers Opening Odds

Jason Lake

Tuesday, November 5, 2013 1:29 PM UTC

Tuesday, Nov. 5, 2013 1:29 PM UTC

The Miami Dolphins and Tampa Bay Buccaneers are making all the NFL betting headlines these days – for all the wrong reasons. It’s a perfect Monday Night Football matchup!

Jason’s record on his final NFL picks for 2013, up to November 3 inclusive:

22-19-1 ATS

1-1 ML (+0.71 units)

4-5 Totals

How popular is the NFL? This Monday night, millions of people will gather ‘round the tube to watch the Miami Dolphins (4-4 SU and ATS) take on the Tampa Bay Buccaneers (0-8 SU, 2-6 ATS). Talk about a watered-down product. But at least the Dolphins are coming off a 22-20 overtime victory against the Cincinnati Bengals (–3 away). The Buccaneers could use a win like that. They could use a win, period.

They almost had one in the bag last week against the Seattle Seahawks – in Seattle, no less. The ‘Hawks did their level best to hand the win to Tampa Bay, but they prevailed 26-24 in overtime, as the Bucs (+16 away) managed to beat the NFL odds for the first time since Week 2. The opening football lines for Week 10 have Tampa getting 3.5 points (–120) at home; that’s already been bet down to +2.5 (–105) in early action, although that’s not much of a move given the difference in juice.

Check out SBRs NFL Week 10 Betting Odds Report

Everyone Loves a Bully

We’ve talked enough about the disaster scenario in Tampa Bay. Now let’s talk about the disaster scenario in the Miami. LG Richie Incognito has been suspended from the team for his role in what can charitably be described as the “hazing” of RT Jonathan Martin, who himself left the team last week. I won’t bother re-hashing the details for you here, but it’s like something out of High School Musical.

This is outstanding news for Tampa Bay. The Dolphins offensive line is already one of the worst in the league in pass protection, allowing an NFL-high 32 sacks through Week 8 and another three in Week 9 against the Bengals. As we go to press, the Fish are practicing with back-ups Nate Garner at left guard and Tyson Clabo at right tackle. The Bucs just got through covering against a Seattle team that’s also struggling in pass protection without LT Russell Okung. Interesting.

Davy Jones’ Locker Room

It’s entirely possible that the Buccaneers are strong “buy low” candidates at this point. They still have a very good defense on paper, although they’ve been underperforming at No. 16 on the efficiency charts through Week 8. It’s their No. 30-ranked offense that’s at issue here. But that ranking is based on the full season. How are the Bucs doing with Mike Glennon at quarterback instead of Josh Freeman?

Much better, actually. Going into the Seattle game, Glennon was minus-7 in passing DYAR after four starts. Replacement level is a godsend compared to the minus-182 passing DYAR Freeman contributed during the first three games. Then the rookie for North Carolina State had his best game yet against the Seahawks, completing 17 of 23 passes with a pair of TDs and no interceptions – Glennon’s third straight pick-free performance.

Meanwhile, RB Mike James (4.6 yards per carry) has outperformed injured RB Doug Martin (3.6 yards), who could return to action against the Dolphins in theory. In reality, Martin has a torn labrum and needs surgery. Would head coach Greg Schiano actually make him play? Probably not after James dropped 158 yards on the Seahawks.

Investing in the Buccaneers at any price might feel a bit risky. But just like Disney makes money hand-over-fist with lousy movies and lousy Monday Night Football games, it’s all about what the market will bear. The Bucs don’t have to win an Oscar this week. They don’t even have to beat the Dolphins to cash in.

NFL Pick: Take the Buccaneers +3 (–120) at Sports Interaction

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