Baltimore +2.5 at Miami O/U 37.5
The Miami Dolphins have no business as favorites in this ballgame. One of the biggest ‘red flags’ in preseason for any team – let alone a favorite – is when a coach starts whining about his injury situation. That’s exactly what Adam Gase has done this week. When a coach can’t handle any more injuries, the entire team seems to feel it, and you tend to see significantly less intensity for a meaningless August game. And Gase has been dealing with the cumulative effect of the injury bug all week, even cancelling practice on Tuesday to go through a ‘no pads’ walk through.
Gase has every reason to whine considering the state of his offensive line right now. Jay Cutler is supposed to get his first game action with Miami here, but how long he’ll be on the field is very much in question, especially given the state of the Dolphins offensive line right now. Center Mike Pouncey (hip) isn’t likely to play. Right tackle Ja’Wuan James (shoulder), has missed practices all week as has guard-center Kraig Urbik (back). Guard Ted Larson (biceps) is already out.
This quote speaks volumes, when it comes to ‘coach speak’: Gase:“Coach Harbaugh always has his crew ready to go very early, and they’re going to be looking to work on certain things. and for us to be able to play them, that’s good for our guys.” Read between the lines here. Gase wants competition. He couldn’t care less about winning.
Baltimore has been hit by the injury bug as well, but John Harbaugh has taken a different approach to the Ravens injury woes. Ozzie Newsome is one of the best GM’s in football, and Baltimore routinely has better depth than the vast majority of NFL teams. Harbaugh sat most of the Ravens veterans last week, but he’s said that he expects a number of those vets to suit up and play tonight.
And Harbaugh is clearly a ‘bet-on’ coach in August. Baltimore went 4-0 SU in the preseason last year, winning SU as an underdog twice; the second time in three years that the Ravens went 4-0 in August both SU and ATS. They won SU as an underdog in their preseason debut against Washington last week; worth backing again even without starting QB Joe Flacco expected to play. Live dog here!