NFL Picks: Dolphins vs. Saints Opening Odds

Jordan Sharp

Tuesday, September 24, 2013 7:39 PM GMT

Monday Night Football should bring about an excellent matchup between two undefeated teams, as the Dolphins head over to New Orleans to play the Saints.


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The football betting odds have opened in favor of the Saints on Monday night at -6, with a total of 47 points. While my NFL picks on both the spread and total will be out within the week, let’s take a look at some of the deciding factors for this game, and see if any sports betting value is presenting itself early for this Week 4 Monday night game.

Week 3

The Dolphins looked like they were headed for their first loss of the season, but they scored a touchdown in the final minute of their game against Atlanta in Week 3, and edged out the victory to remain undefeated. While the game was far from pretty, the Dolphins’ defense played well for most of the game, and Ryan Tannehill is making his claim for the best sophomore QB outside of Robert Griffin and Andrew Luck.

Tannehill went 24/35 with 236 yards, two touchdowns and an interception. His QB rating was solid, but he was also sacked five times by a Falcons defense that isn’t exactly known for their outstanding pass rush, especially without Sean Witherspoon rushing the passer. If Miami can fix their pass protection issues for this week, they have a great shot at an upset against a Saints team that doesn’t have the greatest defense either.

New Orleans smashed the Cardinals this past week, and now they get to stay at home and wait for their opponent to come see them. New Orleans will likely get an extra day off because of this game being on Monday, and even though he probably doesn’t need it, Drew Brees getting an extra day to rest and prepare is not good for the Dolphins.

Brees was his typical self this past week, throwing for 342 yards, three touchdowns and only one pick. Brees was also sacked too much in their game against Arizona, but Brees has seemed to brush it off so far this season, and the protection issues have not come back to bite New Orleans just yet.

The Sharp Pick

Miami does not have a great history on the road over the past few seasons, going 6-13 SU in their last 19 road trips. However, this is a brand new Dolphins team coming into New Orleans, not the team we have seen over the past few years. The Saints however have been almost unbeatable at home. When playing in the Super Dome, the Saints are 15-4 SU in their last 19 home games.

Even though their defense is looking a lot better under Rob Ryan, New Orleans is going to have to get the same pressure they put on Carson Palmer onto Tannehill. The Saints sacked Palmer four times, and hit him just as many times. Making Miami’s young QB stressed and uncomfortable should be New Orleans’ defensive game plan from the start, so expect plenty of blitzes early in the game from Ryan’s exotic defensive fronts.

All in all, I do think the Fins may be slightly undervalued here in the NFL odds. So, if you do like them, now may be your only chance to get +6 before the line starts moving down towards week’s end. I could easily see this spread closing lower by game time.

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