The Tua Tagovailoa Era will have to wait for the Miami Dolphins as the No. 5 overall pick in the 2020 NFL Draft will begin the season as the backup quarterback to veteran journeyman Ryan Fitzpatrick -- not a huge surprise considering Fitz started 13 games for Miami last year when the Fins overachieved. Miami is a 6.5-point Week 1 dog at New England.
After getting blown out four times to start 2019, the Dolphins were a play-on team the rest of the way, going 9-3 ATS and winning outright as double-digit underdogs three times! In the regular-season finale, Miami (+17.5) stunned New England 27-24 in Foxborough and paid off their moneyline backers at +1000.
Now, following huge defensive upgrades in free agency and the drafting of Tagovailoa, many believe Miami will take a quantum leap. Bettors have piled on the Dolphins, sending their AFC East title odds from +1200 to +750.
Consider betting the Dolphins when they visit the Raiders in Week 16. The Dolphins are 0-8 ATS this decade the week after hosting the Patriots (Week 15), losing every game by more than a TD.
MIAMI DOLPHINS BETTING PROFILE
2019 record: 5-11 (last, AFC East)
2019 against the spread: 9-7 ATS
2019 ATS margin: -1.2
2019 Over-Under: 9-7 O-U
2020 strength of schedule: Third-toughest; Dolphins' opponents combined for a .529 winning percentage last year (135-120-1).
WILLIAM HILL 2020 MIAMI DOLPHINS FUTURES ODDS
Win total: 6 (Over -130)
To make playoffs: Yes +450, no -600
Division: +750 to win AFC East
Conference: +5000 to win AFC
Super Bowl: +10000 to win SB 55
MVP: Tua Tagovailoa +10000
Offensive Rookie of the Year: Tagovailoa +800
SportsLine Model's projection: 5.6 wins (lean to the Under)
The young Dolphins went 4-1 ATS with a rest disadvantage last year, covering by an average of 6.8 points.
Week 1 at New England, 1 p.m. ET: Even after last year's shocking regular-season finale, Miami is 6-14 ATS in its last 20 visits to Foxborough. The Under is 11-0 in the Dolphins' last 11 road openers, with an average total score of 31.8 points. Miami was outscored, on average, 17.9-13.9.
Week 2 vs. Buffalo, 1 p.m. ET: The Over is 10-0 in the Dolphins' last 10 home openers. Miami is 2-6 ATS in its last eight games as a home dog vs. Bills, including a 37-20 loss last year while getting +7.
Contrary to the notion the South Florida heat gives Miami an early-season advantage, the Dolphins are 5-15 ATS (25 percent) in their last 20 September home games.
Week 3 at Jacksonville, 8:20 p.m. ET (TNF): The total has not been higher than 42 in any of the past four matchups, with the Under going 3-1. Expect another low total on a short week.
Week 4 vs. Seattle, 1 p.m. ET: The Over is 21-10 (68 percent) in Miami's last 31 home games.
Week 5 at San Francisco, 4:05 p.m. ET: The Dolphins are 12-8 (60 percent) ATS in their last 20 October road games.
Week 6 at Denver, 4:05 p.m. ET: Miami is 9-1 ATS in the last 10 meetings, the most recent matchup coming in 2017.
Week 7 vs. LA Chargers, 1 p.m. ET: The Over is 14-6 in Miami's last 20 October home games.
Week 8 vs. LA Rams, 1 p.m. ET: The Dolphins are 13-8-2 ATS in their last 23 home games.
Week 9 at Arizona, 4:05 p.m. ET: The Dolphins are 4-8 ATS (33 percent) versus the NFC since 2017.
Week 10 vs. NY Jets, 4:05 p.m. ET: The Dolphins have covered four straight meetings and are 6-1-1 ATS in the last eight. Eight of the last 10 meetings at MetLife Stadium have gone Under.
Week 11: Bye
Week 12 at NY Jets, 1 p.m. ET: Miami is 5-0 ATS in its last five off a bye, with the team exceeding oddsmakers' expectations by an average of 9.5 points.
Week 13 at Cincinnati, 1 p.m. ET: The Dolphins are 6-3 ATS in the last nine meetings, including last year's 38-35 home win as 1.5-point dogs in Week 16.
Week 14 vs. Kansas City, 1 p.m. ET: The Over is 12-5 (71 percent) in Miami's last 17 games as a home dog.
Week 15 vs. New England, 1 p.m. ET: Before last year's 43-0 home loss in Week 2, the Dolphins had gone 5-1 SU and ATS against the Pats at Hard Rock Stadium.
Week 16 at Las Vegas, TBA Saturday or Sunday: The Dolphins are 0-8 ATS this decade the week after hosting the Patriots, losing every game by more than a TD.
Week 17 at Buffalo, 1 p.m. ET: Miami has lost three straight and seven of eight in Buffalo (2-6 ATS).
EXPERT PLAY FROM SENIOR ANALYST LARRY HARTSTEIN (60 percent ATS last year): Over 6 wins (-120)
Everyone wants to play for Brian Flores. Miami added potential difference-makers in Kyle Van Noy, Shaq Lawson, Byron Jones and Matt Breida, plus they killed it in the draft. There's a good chance this line moves to 6.5 wins, so I'd jump on the Over now. If Tua Tagovailoa isn't ready to go Week 1, Ryan Fitzpatrick is more than serviceable. Look for the defense, which gave up an NFL-high 30.9 points per game, to improve to middle-of-the-pack.
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