The Miami Dolphins may be showing some signs of progress under first-year head coach Adam Gase. But that all depends on how you want to look at it. Are they lucky that they aren’t 0-3 at the moment? If this is a team that more resembles one that is winless, they will have a hard time indeed on Thursday night, as they take on the Cincinnati Bengals in an NFL game that is set to begin at 8:30 PM ET at Paul Brown Stadium. As always, keep in mind that BetAnySports customers have a chance to take advantage of real-time wagering even after the game begins as they utilize the state-of-the-art software available through Live Betting Ultra.
Miami make a good showing for themselves in the opener, as they went up to CenturyLink Field and held the Seattle Seahawks to twelve points. But they also allowed Jimmy Garoppolo of the New England Patriots to blast them early before going down with an injury. They did not exactly snuff out rookie Cody Kessler, who was making his first NFL start and probably would have led the Cleveland Browns to a win if not for a trio of missed field goals.
One of the keys for the Dolphins here is establishing a rushing game, and that might be hard to do, unless Jay Ajayi, who scored the winning touchdown in the extra period last Sunday, can completely take himself out of Gase’s doghouse. Arian Foster, whose free agent signing brought some criticism to the Miami front office because of his history of injuries, may miss another game due to a groin pull.
In the Thursday night NFL betting odds posted on this game by the people at BetAnySports, the Bengals are solidly favored:
Miami Dolphins +7.5 (-115)
Cincinnati Bengals -7.5 (-105)
Over 44.5 points -110
Under 44.5 points -110
Foster isn’t the only guy who has been hit by the injury bug for the Dolphins. Tight end Jordan Cameron is out with a concussion, and there are a number of important players hobbled, including left tackle Branden Albert, centers Anthony Steen and Mike Pouncey and linebacker Jelani Jenkins. These should not be ignored.
But there could be a key absence for the Bengals too, and that is tight end Tyler Eifert, who is doubtful with an ankle injury. He is a guy who stretches out the field and certainly is of great help on the short routes, and he has not played yet this season. You’ve got to wonder whether this has something to do with Andy Dalton having suffered a dozen sacks already. That would appear to be something Miami’s pass rushers (nine sacks) could exploit.
BetAnySports patrons did see the Cincinnati ground game show some life last week behind Jeremy Hill’s 97 yards, and that was area of concern. And the really good news for the Bengals is that linebacker Vontaze Burfict, a genuine difference-maker on defense, is back from his suspension.
And so you can speculate as to whether he would have made the critical difference last week, as Cincinnati’s stop unit allowed Denver quarterback Trevor Siemian, who has very little NFL experience, completed eleven of his last 12 passes and threw for four touchdowns in a home loss to the Broncos. Ryan Tannehill can be mistake-prone, and he is still working through the first season where he is truly audibling at the line of scrimmage, but he has the ability to put up numbers nonetheless, and Jarvis Landry (17 catches, 194 yards) will be keyed up to match numbers with AJ Green (295 yards already).
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