Baltimore Ravens vs. Miami Dolphins
Date and Time: Saturday, August 25, 2018, 7 p.m. ET
Location: Hard Rock Stadium, Miami Gardens, FL
Opening NFL Odds: Dolphins PK, 41.5
Ravens vs. Dolphins TV Coverage: Local TV
While the preseason means absolutely nothing in the grand scheme of things, don’t tell that to Joe Flacco who has looked like a different quarterback over the course of his time on the gridiron. Maybe bringing in both Robert Griffin III and Lamar Jackson was just what was needed to get those competitive juices flowing once again.
Through two starts, he’s completed 12 of 16 passes for 143 yards and a 2:0 TD/INT ratio. His 141.4 QB rating is currently one of the best in the league. Throw in RG III and Jackson’s 378 yards and 4 combined touchdowns, and it comes as no surprise to see the offense ranked ninth in scoring. When you add a defense that’s allowed just 14.0 points per game, it’s time the betting public started taking the Ravens seriously again as a bona fide AFC North and Super Bowl contender!
Miami has a season win total of 6.5 heading into the regular season. The team regressed big time last season after qualifying for the playoffs the year prior. Ryan Tannehill going down in the regular season was one of the main reasons why, but a nasty schedule also played a role. Sweeping changes were made within the franchise this past offseason, and slowly but surely, the roster is rounding into shape.
Going back to that win total. The betting markets are a bit intrigued by the Fins this season evidenced by the lofty vig currently attached to betting the high side of that number. As it stands now, the offense looks to be way ahead of the defense with it ranked No. 5 overall and No. 12 in scoring. There’s some solid talent on that side of the ball both returning and incoming, so it’s possible it takes advantage of a Ravens squad playing its fourth game of the exhibition season.
14 – As good a preseason the Ravens are currently having, there’s still one glaring issue that will have many a NFL bettor concerned about backing them when the games truly count. The offensive line has been flat out horrendous keeping whichever quarterback is under center upright. The front wall has already conceded 14 quarterback sacks. When you break that down through three games, it’s nearly five per game!
Flacco won’t survive the regular season if that output is carried over into the regular season. The unit has gotten better the last couple weeks since allowing eight to the Chicago Bears in the HOF Game, but 3.0 per game also stinks! Miami has generated minimal pressure through its first two games ( 1.5 sacks per game ), so if the offensive line can’t hold its own in this spot, they’ve got some major problems.
Ravens vs. Dolphins Free Picks
Hopefully you listened to me last week when I told you to hold off before betting the Colts in the Monday nighter. I knew Baltimore would close the short chalk, and that’s exactly what happened. Condolences to those who didn’t. This week, it wouldn’t surprise me in the least if the Ravens got steamed even more. The betting public is fickle and loves betting on what just transpired. Especially on teams it just saw on a national telecast.
Miami will enter this game hungry looking to score its first win against the NFL preseason betting lines. Gase is 1-1 SU and ATS in dress rehearsal games with the lone win coming the only time Miami was at home. The Dolphins had every opportunity to win both preseason games, but ultimately came up short late. Though I’m playing with fire fading Baltimore’s preseason win streak, I think it’s the prudent move to make for a second straight week. Again, hold off to see where JQP moves the line.
NFL ATS Pick: Miami PK at BookMaker.eu
NFL Score Prediction: Dolphins 23 – Ravens 21