Miami Dolphins (0-0 SU, 0-0 ATS) vs. Washington Redskins (0-0 SU, 0-0 ATS)
NFL Week 1
Date/Time: September 13, 2015, 1PM EST
Where: FedEX Field, Landover, Maryland
by Wilson, NFL Handicapper, Predictem.com
Point Spread: MIA -4/WASH +4
Over/Under Total: 43
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The Washington Redskins may not be the NFLs most stable organization or team but they have managed to hold it together in route to their regular season opener versus the Miami dolphins. Redskins coach Jay Gruden says he is happy with what the team has done in the preseason where the Skins put together a 3-1 record. Yes, it is just preseason but considering the plethora of injuries and number of new players being plugged into key roles, Gruden is optimistic his staff and players are heading in the right direction. That being said, it will definitely be a tough road for the Redskins to finish this season above .500 or better. Miami will have the upper hand in this contest (well, just about any team would) as they are more experienced and consistent across the board.
Offensively, Miami is led by QB Ryan Tannehill who returns as the starter for a fourth season, and according to many NFL analyst and Dolphins staff, Tannehill has improved tremendously over the offseason both in his footwork and ability to hit his receivers in stride. Potential kinks in Miamis offense will be early in the season while WR DeVante Parker (foot) and left tackle Branden Albert (knee) recover from injuries but the Dolphins will be a legitimate threat to win the East this year and perhaps a run to the Superbowl even. Even with injuries the offensive advantage in this game goes to Miami.
Defensively, Miami will be strong especially on the line where they are excellent at stopping the run and rushing the pass. There is concern about linebackers wrapping guys up as the tackling was a bit sloppy last season. If the Dolphins can clean it up with solid open field tackles coupled with the D-line doing their job they will be solid. Pro-bowl cornerback Brent Grimes and SS Rashad Jones need to step up their playmaking skills and help the cause. Regardless of Miamis slight blemishes on defense they are still better than the Redskins. Advantage Miami.
The Redskins are rebuilding mainly because guys keep getting hurt. Offensively they will have a new right side on the line which will be tested and you can bet defensive coaches around the league are waiting to exploit them. RG3 is out and Kirk Cousins is in at QB after winning the job this summer with much assistance from RG3s ineffectiveness and concussion through the first two preseason contests. Washington has weapons on offense and coach Gruden is definitely showing his command by benching RG3. However, the Skins will not be able to matchup with the Dolphins. There are too many weak spots and newbies on this roster to believe they can compete with or even get on the scoreboard enough to make the game interesting.
The positive in this game is that both teams are on the comeback trailMiami more so than Washington but they are both headed in the right direction at least. For Miami, it will be their experience that gives them the advantage. Tannehill is comfortable with the offense and has proven he knows how to keep getting better, and that confidence alone will allow him to have his way against a lackluster Redskin defense. The Redskins best opportunity for wins will come early in the season as four of their first seven games are at home and none of the seven teams made the playoffs last year. Unfortunately Miami will be probably the most difficult team in this stretch.
The early line on this contest is Miami -4 and it will likely move as game day approaches. The over/under is currently 43 and this is where some may want action. Based on Miamis stronger defense and Washingtons lack of experience and injuries on both sides of the ball I dont anticipate a ton of scoring in this contest. There will be a couple break downs of course for big plays but this game has a very good chance of going under. Miami should get the W but the under looks even better. Luck to ya.
Wilson’s Pick to Cover the Point Spread: Under