Miami Dolphins vs. Arizona Cardinals Pick ATS
Miami Dolphins (4-3 SU, 5-2 ATS) vs. Arizona Cardinals (5-2 SU, 5-2 ATS)
Week 9 NFL
Date/Time: Sunday, November 8, 2020 at 4:25PM EDT
Where: State Farm Stadium, Glendale, Arizona
Point Spread: MIA +4.5/ARI -4.5 (BetNow - Deposit $100 to $1000 and they’ll give you a 100% REAL CASH bonus! Best bankroll booster EVER!)
Over/Under Total: 48
The Miami Dolphins come to State Farm Stadium on Sunday for a Week 9 showdown with the Arizona Cardinals. The Cardinals were able to have last week off, licking their wounds while Miami was in a battle on Sunday. And the way they went into the bye was with a lot of steam, winning a pulsating and thrilling overtime battle over their longtime division tormentor Seattle, 37-34. With some initial success this season, that win could really have an invigorating effect on them. They might have a tricky opponent, however, in a Miami Dolphins team that won their third game in a row with a big 28-17 win over the Rams on Sunday. It gave rookie QB Tua Tagovailoa a win in his first NFL start, and at 4-3, the Dolphins gave a future.
Arizona Turning the Corner
In only the second season of this new incarnation of the Cardinals, with QB Kyler Murray and head coach Kliff Kingsbury, we’re seeing some really good things. Murray has really come around this season, both with his play but also his leadership. They have achieved some nice balance on the offense. Between Murray, Kenyan Drake (out), and others, they can run the ball well. Adding DeAndre Hopkins has given their air-attack some real bite. Through 7 games, he is over 700 yards. With guys like Larry Fitzgerald, Christian Kirk, Chase Edmonds, and others, there are some difference-makers on this side of the ball. With Drake out, Edmonds look to take on a bigger role. Their O-line hasn’t been the liability that was advertised, due to perhaps the play of Murray and Kingsbury’s spread offense, which can camouflage the front’s inadequacies.
The Cardinals have been mired in the dumps for several seasons and now finally were able to poke their head out a little bit. It won’t be easy to dissuade them at this point. Teams like Arizona can be tough once they start to get a little taste of success. They already beat the 49ers and Seahawks this season and have shown in no uncertain terms that they have narrowed the gap between themselves and the rest of a really tough division.
The Arizona Defense: The Good and Bad
The Arizona defense as a sum-total might be greater than their individual parts would suggest. On paper, they’re not all that impressive. The front-seven, especially without Chandler Jones, is really devoid of difference-makers. The run-stop has sometimes been pretty flimsy this season. But some guys have stepped up, with Haason Reddick getting to the quarterback with some regularity. Their secondary is still more effective. Both Budda Baker and Patrick Peterson have multiple picks, while Dre Kirkpatrick has made a lot of plays. Their last game against Seattle showed the good and bad, with Tyler Lockett having a mega-game, while they held DK Metcalf to almost nothing. So they’re far from infallible. They can be exploited across multiple areas. But their bottom line isn’t all that bad, allowing a respectable 20.9 points a game on average.
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The New-Look Dolphins
A lot of things are starting to click nicely for the Dolphins, ahead of schedule in many people’s minds. The 11-point win over the Rams on Sunday wasn’t so much a testament to great quarterback play but rather an opportunistic defense that turned the game on its head. With the Rams in control, the turnovers started coming, with Andrew Van Ginkel running in a fumble for a touchdown and Jakeem Grant later running in a punt for a TD. With that, two picks from Eric Rowe and Christian Wilkins, the offense didn’t have to do a ton.
At some point, the Dolphins will need to let their offense do the talking, but it’s nice to be able to fall back on a “D” that can change the complexion of a game with big plays. Xavien Howard almost had a pick in his fifth straight game, and we’re seeing coach Brian Flores starting to get a lot out of the defense he constructed. For his part, Tua was 12-for-22 for just 93 yards, but he didn’t throw any picks and tossed a TD to DeVante Parker. He did cough up a fumble, which was key to the Rams getting off to an early lead. But let’s face it, as far as key difference-makers around Tua to help him succeed, the Miami offense is a little light on playmakers. It’s a pretty anonymous cast. But hats off to the Miami O-line in what appeared to be a matchup issue against Aaron Donald and the Rams’ D-line. Holding them to one sack and keeping Tua well-protected was a good sign.
Drawbacks for Both
Part of being a team on the rise is that you’re not there yet. And part of not being there yet is not delivering week in and week out. You may be able to build a nice case for why either team here should cover the spread. But let’s remember that while both of these teams have winning records, they are also coming off a long losing slide, part of the reason they were able to get all these young players who are now helping bring them back up the ladder. But as we see good signs, let’s also not get carried away thinking that recent positivity will be a constant.
Take the Home Team
I see the Cardinals’ offense being a little too much for Miami in a game where it’s otherwise hard to separate the teams. Tua could find his stride and take a more proactive role in helping the team win this week, but the horsepower-differential between the two offenses is jarring. Having last week off while nice and dug in at home, awaiting a team making a cross-country road-trip out of their conference, also gives them an edge. And while betting against a hot Miami team that worked hard to get to this point isn’t a great feeling, the same applies to the other side of the equation. I see Arizona doing enough to get the win and cover at home.
Loot’s Prediction to Cover the Point Spread: I’m betting on the Arizona Cardinals minus 4.5 points. Yes! 5Dimes has left the market causing many NFL bettors to be left going back to -110 odds. What’s sad is that 99% of them don’t know that they can still get their -105 reduced odds at BAS (formerly a sister book of 5Dimes). Click here to get your reduced odds back today!
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