Tampa Bay Buccaneers (3-6; 2-6-1 ATS; 4-5 O/U) vs. Miami Dolphins (4-5; 3-4-2 ATS; 3-6 O/U)
NFL: Sunday, November 19, 2017 at 1:00pm EST
Line: Miami -3
The Miami Dolphins will look to get back into the win column when they host the Tampa Bay Buccaneers Sunday afternoon from Hard Rock Stadium. The Buccaneers notched a 15-10 home win over the Jets last week, and the Dolphins are coming off a 45-21 road loss to the Panthers. This marks the first meeting since 2013 in a game the Buccaneers won by a 22-19 score.
Buccaneers Defense Shines in Win over Jets
The Tampa Bay Buccaneers played outstanding defense in their much-needed 15-10 home win over the Jets last week. Ryan Fitzpatrick got the start in place of the injured Winston and was not sharp. He completed 17 of 34 passes for 187 yards with one touchdown against one interception. The 13-year veteran quarterback will get the start again this week as Winston continues to nurse a shoulder injury. Fitzpatrick has tallied 545 passing yards with a 4:2 TD to INT ratio in three games played. Doug Martin was unable to get a whole lot going on the ground last week, rushing for 51 yards on 20 carries. The 28-year old running back has been mediocre since his return from suspension, collecting 305 rushing yards in six games. DeSean Jackson came up big for the Bucs in the win, making six grabs for 82 yards. The veteran wide receiver is having a strong season, recording 504 receiving yards on the year. The Bucs offense has not put any points on the board with regularity since week seven against the Bills, and it won’t get much better until Winston returns.
The Buccaneers defense was stellar in the win over the Jets, limiting them to 275 total yards and which included only 56 rushing yards. It was their best defensive performance of the season, and they will face another weak offense this week. The Bucs will need to win low- scoring games similar to last week with Winston out. They are now 3-6 and sit in last place in the NFC South.
Dolphins Crushed by Panthers in Third Straight Loss
The Miami Dolphins defense had no answer for the Panthers in their rough 45-21 road loss on Monday night. Jay Cutler was decent, completing 22 of 37 passes for 213 yards with two touchdowns against one interception. The 34-year old quarterback is having a mediocre season, posting 1519 passing yards with a 12:6 TD to INT ratio. Kenyan Drake was a bright spot in the loss, rushing for 82 yards on 17 carries. The 23-year old running back also rushed for 69 yards two weeks ago and will see a majority of the carries the rest of the way after Jay Ajayi was traded. Dolphins’ leading receiver Jarvis Landry made five catches for 42 yards in the loss last week. The 24-year old wide receiver has been quiet the last three weeks and has now tallied 472 receiving yards on the season. The Dolphins offense has shown some life in their last two games, however, consistency has been an issue.
The Dolphins defense was terrible in the loss to the Panthers last week, surrendering 548 total yards which included 294 rushing yards. Their defense has fallen apart in their last four games after a strong start to the season. Miami has now dropped three straight games and sit in third place in the AFC East.
The Tampa Bay Buccaneers are:
- 5-0 ATS in their last 5 games against the Dolphins.
- 5-1 ATS in their last 6 games after allowing less than 15 points in their previous game.
- 18-3-1 ATS in their last 22 games in week 11.
The Miami Dolphins are:
- 0-3-1 ATS in their last 4 games against a team with a losing record.
- 5-21 ATS in their last 26 games after allowing over 250 passing yards in their previous game.
- 5-16-1 ATS in their last 22 games after allowing more than 30 points in their previous game.
I am siding with Tampa Bay in this contest. The Dolphins defense has been awful, allowing an average of 35 points in their last four games, and I don’t expect much from their offense which ranks at the bottom of the NFL in all categories, and they are only averaging 15.2 points per game. The Tampa Bay defense has been better as of late, allowing 17 or fewer points in two out of their last three games and they should contain the Dolphins poor offense. This game could go either way so I will take the points with the team playing the better defense.
Pick: Tampa Bay Buccaneers
Both the Buccaneers and Dolphins are both struggling to score points with any consistency. Cutler and Fitzpatrick certainly won’t put up big numbers, and neither team owns a deep running game, so I anticipate this to be a low-scoring contest similar to the Buccaneers 15-10 win last week. The Buccaneers have scored 15 or fewer points in three straight games, and the under 4-0 in their last four November games. Miami has scored fewer than 20 points on five occasions this season, and the under is 6-1 in their last seven games when playing on a Sunday following a Monday night game.