The Pittsburgh Steelers are a good team, if you needed me to tell you that. After the hiccup against the Philadelphia Eagles, the Steelers have cruised the last two weeks over the Chiefs and Jets. The Chiefs really felt how mad the Steelers were after losing to the Eagles, as they got blasted 43-14 on Sunday Night Football. Ben Roethlisberger toiled with them all night, and it was one of those games that was over after the 1st quarter of play. It was a totally different dimension from the previous week, where the game was a progressive beat down of the Steelers by the Eagles. They just wore them down, which isn’t something that happens too often to a team like the Steelers. They don’t have the same physical nature of the Troy Polamalu teams, but they are still a rough team who aren’t easy to do that to.
Since falling to the Eagles, the Steelers beat the Chiefs 43-14, and then throttled the Jets, 31-13. Roethlisberger passed for 300 yards with 5 touchdowns against the Chiefs, and had 380 yards and 4 touchdowns against the Jets. The Jets are the Jets, but they still have a good defense, so lighting them up was no easy chore. The Steelers head into Miami with just the one loss on their resume. With Denver looking out of sorts on offense, Pittsburgh is the clear number 2 in the AFC. 1st of course belongs to the New England Patriots.
The Miami Dolphins know what it feels like to be all out of sorts. They are out of sync, and the team appears to be headed to yet another wasted season. They paid a small fortune to acquire Ndamukong Suh, but the ROI hasn’t been working out in their favor. Have the Dolphins gotten better with Suh in the lineup? They seem to be the same team as before, which is an average, mediocre team who cannot seem to get over the hump. They played the Seattle Seahawks right to the final gun in Week 1. In fact, if it weren’t for Kenny Stills dropping a gift of a long ball, the Dolphins would have had that one. Who knows what a win like that could have done for them mentally. As it is though, the Dolphins will be looking to find a way out of a 1-4 start to 2016.
Pittsburgh Steelers vs. Miami Dolphins NFL Betting Odds:
vs. Dolphins +7.5(-110)
Odds provided by Bovada.lv
Steelers vs. Dolphins Pick:
The Dolphins took advantage of a patchwork offensive line for Seattle in Week 1. For them to win this game, they’re going to need to take advantage of a sleeping Steelers team. It isn’t the most improbable scenario, we see teams sleeping every week. There are always one or two good teams that look a bit lackadaisical. This is going to be the Steelers biggest enemy this afternoon. Because from a talent perspective, the Steelers have all of the quality cards in their favor. Roethlisberger is in another hot phase, which seems to come once or twice every year for consecutive weeks, and he has one of the best receivers in the NFL to throw it up to.
The Dolphins have been anemic on offense. Anemic is probably a nice way of putting it. Ryan Tannehill has failed to impress, and doesn’t seem to have the ability to improve. He’s at a part in his career where he has to take over games and win a few. You could plug in any cheaper game-manager around the NFL and you would get the same results that Tannehill is producing. Tannehill has thrown for 1,276 yards with 6 touchdowns and 7 interceptions. On top of that, he’s fumbled the ball 4 times. How much are they paying him? Yeah, I know it’s a lot of money. Tannehill brings a quarterback rating of 83.6 to this matchup.
Conversely, there is Roethlisberger who brings 15 touchdowns and just 4 interceptions to the equation this afternoon. The only place that the Steelers falter are on defense. Note that they are 25th in the NFL, allowing 379 yards per game. Still, the Steelers look like the obvious choice in this game. The Dolphins are 28th on defense and 29th on offense, scoring just 17.6 points per game. I suspect that Miami is going to get up for this game and play like they did against Seahawks, with a purpose. I cashed the Dolphins in that game, and think they hang around in this one long enough to cover the spread. Too many points on the road for the Steelers, playing against a team who desperately needs to play better.
PICK: DOLPHINS +7.5 (-110)