NFL Picks: Buccaneers vs. Dolphins in Preseason Week 3

Jordan Sharp

Tuesday, August 20, 2013 6:24 PM UTC

Tuesday, Aug. 20, 2013 6:24 PM UTC

The preseason battle of Florida is set to take place this week, with the Tampa Bay Buccaneers and the Miami Dolphins set to meet.

NFL betting odds for this game favor the Dolphins at -3, with a total of 40.5 points. Who will win this intrastate affair? Who should you add to your NFL picks this week?

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Week 2

The Bucs got blasted again in Week 2, and now head into Week 3 of the preseason still without a win. While their defense has looked better, it seems that until Darrelle Revis comes back from his injury, their secondary is going to have the same problems its been having since last season. The Bucs gave up 25 points to the Patriots a week after giving up over 40 to the Ravens. The Bucs gave up 243 yards passing to the Pats’ QBs, including an 11/12 for 107 yards and a touchdown to Tom Brady. While the Dolphins aren’t the best passing team, (they are getting a lot better) they will likely still try and exploit the Bucs over the top.

On the other side, the Fins moved to 1-2 SU this preseason after losing a good game against the Texans. While the highlight of the game might have been the fight and then subsequent helmet swing between Richie Incognito and Antonio Smith, it still helped us learn about the Dolphins. Miami’s starting offense looked good while in the game. Ryan Tannehill finished the game 10/15 with 141 yards passing and a touchdown to newly acquired Mike Wallace.

First win blues

With the Bucs still without a win this preseason, I can see why Tampa taking points seems like a good bet, but I think there is more value in taking points with the Bucs for the first half. There is no telling what will happen once the starters are taken out at the end of the first half, however if both Greg Schiano and Joe Philbin play this game as expected, I see the starters playing the entire first half.

If that is indeed the case, I have to like the Bucs here as slight first half underdogs. As long as Doug Martin is set to play for the Bucs, I really like their chances of winning the first half of this game. They have yet to win a game this preseason, and even though they might not win this one, I think they can play well enough to beat the Dolphins’ first-string players. As long as their defense holds up, the Bucs should be the bet here to be ahead at halftime.


The Sharp Pick

Also, since this is the third preseason game (4th for the Dolphins) I see the score getting lower in this game. The Dolphins’ offense wont have the success that the Pats and Ravens have had on the Bucs this preseason, and with the starters getting more run in this game, defense should rule the day. With a lower scoring game likely, that makes our bet on the Bucs taking first half points even better. Lower scoring games always favor the underdogs, and if the Bucs don’t give up any big plays in the first half to Mike Wallace, I think they can walk into the locker room with the lead in Miami. Take the first half moneyline with the Bucs for your sports picks.

NFL Pick: Bet the Bucs on the Money Line in the 1st Half

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