Miami Dolphins (0-2) at Dallas Cowboys (2-0)
The Cowboys are favored by a whopping 23 points in this game. Prior to this week, there have only been 5 instances of a team being favored by 21+ points in the past 30 years. None of the previous five teams covered (they all won, but with an average margin of points of “just” 12.6 points) and the Cowboys don’t seem to fit in with the other teams that have been favored by this many points in the past three decades. Three of those teams were the 2007 regular season undefeated Patriots and the other two teams were the 2013 Broncos (who were undefeated at the time and went on to make the Super Bowl) and the 1993 49ers (who had won 28 of their last 33 regular season games).
All of that being said, I’m not taking Miami this week and I would need a really good reason to take them at any point this year. This line is more about the Dolphins than who they are facing and this is highly unlikely to be the final time the Dolphins are underdogs of 21+ this season. I have this line calculated at Dallas -21.5, but beyond 21 it’s hard to consider a couple points in either direction line value and it’s possible my roster rankings don’t capture how awful the Dolphins are right now.
The few good players that the Dolphins do have don’t seem to be trying hard because the coaching staff and front office transparently don’t care about winning this season. Neither the winless 2008 Lions or the winless 2017 Browns ever lost by more than 40 points and the Dolphins have already done so twice in two weeks. Switching quarterbacks to Josh Rosen is unlikely to provide the spark they need and he could easily end up being a downgrade over a proven veteran like Ryan Fitzpatrick. The Cowboys are the pick for pick ‘em purposes, but I would never bet on a team favored by this many points because they could easily take their foot off the gas in the second half and allow a backdoor cover.
Dallas Cowboys 34 Miami Dolphins 10
Pick against the spread: Dallas -23