TEAMS WITH BYES: TITANS, JAGUARS , GIANTS (oh, thank goodness) , PACKERS , RAMS , CARDINALS
Thursday, October 26 - Night Game
BALTIMORE (3-4) -3.5 vs. Miami (4-2)
The unbelievable finish to last Thursday’s game between the Raiders and Chiefs was equal parts crazy, ridiculous and highly entertaining. This is the type of Thursday night match-up the NFL could only dream about when they force fed Thursday games into the last TV negotiations. Without NBC's famed "Must See TV Line-up" to compete with, the NFL now owns Thursday nights.
Ah, the glory days of NBC's Must See TV. We miss you all, even you Frasier Crane. But now we are left to choose between this horrible week 8 match-up, the corpse of "Grey's Anatomy" (really, 14 seasons!) or the resurrection of "Will & Grace" (11 year hiatus and they all look exactly the same?). Netflix anyone?
Baltimore has been dreadful since traveling to London in week 3. They have been ravaged by injuries and plagued by Joe Flacco’s play and massive contract. Baltimore ranks 32nd in the league in passing yards and 31st in total offense (reminder – there are 32 teams in the league). The Ravens lost Mike Wallace early in week 7. He joined fellow receivers Jeremy Maclin (shoulder) and Breshard Perriman (concussion) on the sidelines. Not good news for the Ravens offense. Add RB Terrance West and WR Michael Campanaro to that list and who knows what pass catchers will be lining up for the Ravens on Thursday. Their defense is still good, but not good enough to make up for the total lack of offense.
Miami could be the luckiest team in the league. The Dolphins are 4-2 with last second FG wins against San Diego, Atlanta and New York. The other win came against the Titans and Matt Cassel. With Jay Cutler at the helm, the Dolphins offense couldn’t move the ball. Plays like this Jay Cutler highlight below have buried the Dolphins offense - ranking 30th in passing yards, 29th in rushing yards, 32nd in total yards and 31st in points for – remember, 32 teams in the league.
But they are 4-2 and a ½ game out of first place in the AFC East! They do have two games upcoming against both the Patriots and the Bills. But good news Dolphins fans, Jay Cutler was knocked out last week with multiple cracked ribs. Matt Moore came in in the second half and threw for 188 yards and 2 TDS rallying the Dolphins from a 14 point 4th quarter deficit. Cutler is out for Thursday at a minimum, so Moore gets another chance to win the starting job. Should that really be a question? Playing only in the 2nd half, Moore threw for more yards (188) than the per game average in the first six (180). Maybe Cutler should consider hanging them up again to join the broadcast booth.
So, in this battle of the two lowest ranked offenses in the league, we’ll gladly take the 3.5 points and will be binge watching "Ozark" on Netflix.
PICK: Miami +3.5