We’ve got a battle between two of the three Florida teams as the Jacksonville Jaguars host the Miami Dolphins. The reality is these are two bad football teams but we can find value here, especially with the total.
Miami Dolphins vs. Jacksonville Jaguars
Thursday, September 24, 2020 – 08:20 PM EDT at TIAA Bank Field
Interstate Battle of Two Struggling Franchises
There's no way around the fact that these are two of the worst teams in the NFL. It's not all bad news for both of these Florida franchises as the Jags host the Dolphins on Thursday Night Football. Jacksonville has won a game this season and were competitive in their 33-30 loss to the Tennessee Titans. The Miami Dolphins for their part are 0-2 after losses to the Patriots and Bills. They too were competitive against Buffalo but couldn't get stops when they needed them for the win.
A lot of people assumed that Jacksonville was going to tank but that has not been the case. If you watch their first two games, this is a team that competes hard on every play. They also have a key element that you need to be competitive in the NFL. Say what you want about the attention Gardner Minshew gets for things that have nothing to do with football, he can actually play. Good quarterback play in the NFL is priceless and the fact that Minshew has been able to lead his team to a 1-1 record is important.
Through the first two games, he has 6 touchdowns and 2 interceptions. His steady overall play has been the reason why they've been able to be competitive despite most people's expectations for this team. This line opened at a pick'em on SBR's NFL odds page at sportsbooks that came out with the earliest line. I absolutely hate getting the worst of the line but I'm laying the points with Jacksonville here. They have the better quarterback and have actually won a game while being competitive in the other.
Over Has Value in This Game
There's been a huge amount of action on the Over and to be honest I'm not getting the best of the line here. I'm not sure why the Total opened at 45 at most of the top online sportsbooks but that was obviously way too low. The number is 47.5 which is terrible for those of us that missed out on the earlier number. The only reason I'm still taking the over in this spot is that we have two competent quarterbacks to go along with terrible defenses.
This is not the old Jacksonville Jaguars with elite defensive talent all over the field. Most of those players are gone and the Dolphins will be able to put up points on the team. The Dolphins are actually the team I'm more concerned with because Ryan Fitzpatrick is such a low floor quarterback. He can look amazing one week and terrible the next. That said, he can hardly be blamed for the loss last week considering he put up 28 points against the Bills who have one of the best defenses in the NFL.
That's why I'm taking the Over 47.5 (-110) at BetOnline with my NFL picks. We know Minshew can put up points on this Dolphins defense and I think Fitzpatrick can have back to back games where he puts up good numbers against this subpar Miami Dolphins defense.
If you're going to bet on this game, I don't think 4 points is enough to take with Miami. I say that because you don't want to be in the habit of laying points with the Jags. For those of you that got in on the line early, I applaud you but it moved up to 4 in less than 24 hours which gives you an idea of how little the bookies know about that's going to happen.
Sharp money is on Jacksonville albeit at a number much better than 4. Call me crazy but I'm confident enough in Minshew that I really think he's going to have another big game. You can call me crazy but I'm not putting all my stock in Minshew though. The Jags have a legit running back by the name of James Robinson who I believe is going to have a big game against this Miami defense. Robinson looks like an explosive runner who does not go down after the first contact. I think him and Minshew will help cover the spread and get enough points to help take this game over the total.
My Picks: Two-Team Parlay (Pays +280)