The New England Patriots upset not only the Arizona Cardinals but many people betting on NFL in week 1 of the regular season, and if that’s what they did as underdogs, then things don’t bode well for the Miami Dolphins on Sunday, September 18th. The NFL betting online odds for the game at Gillette Stadium are as follows:
Dolphins +6½ (-105) 42 (-110)
Patriots -6½ (-115) 42 (-110)
Once and future Tom Brady backup Jimmy Garoppolo should have found himself up s*** creek without a paddle, as the Pats were missing tight end Rob Gronkowski, defensive end Rob Ninkovich, and a couple o-line starters. Given the circumstances, many fans who were betting on NFL surely expected Garoppolo to choke harder than CM Punk. As it turns out, though, Garoppolo threw 24 of 33 for 264 passing yards and one TD. In addition to that, Garoppolo directed the Patriots from their own 19 to the Cardinals 15 to set up Stephen Gostkowski’s 23-yard field goal. This was followed by Arizona’s Chandler Catanzaro missing a 47-yard field goal with 41 seconds left on the clock. The final score was 23 to 21.
The Miami Dolphins took advantage of a flawed-looking Seattle Seahawks offense, which yielded an 86-yard touchdown drive to Dolphins QB Ryan Tannehill that in turn gave the Dolphins a 10-6 lead with 4:08 left on the clock – the Dolphins had just 145 yards total offense until that drive. Tannehill hit Jarvis Landry for 28 yards and Damien Williams for 29 to put Miami in the Seattle 2. Two plays later, Tannehill pushed across the goal line on a designed draw. Tannehill finished 16 of 29 for 186 yards, but the Dolphins drove twice inside the Seahawks’ 20 and failed to produce any points. Furthermore, Miami could not take advantage of a limping Russell Wilson.
And speaking of advantages, whatever benefit the Dolphins might have expected to reap from Brady’s absence is nil. For what it is worth, at least they can rest assured that balls will be properly inflated. The Pats entered the season opener the least favored by people betting on NFL since Super Bowl XXXVI in 2002 – which they also won. Head coach Bill Belichik’s system might just be foolproof. Brady and the Gronk not available? Belichick can take Buffalo Bills castoff Chris Hogan and turn him in to an essential part of the team. Or, as Arizona linebacker Kevin Minter put it, “The proof is in the pudding. They have done it for years. Whoever they put in there, they find a way to get it done.”
Then again, the Dolphins proved against the Seahawks that they will not be so easily caught in the other teams’ tuna-fishing nets. The Miami defense stumped star QB Russell Wilson for most of their season-opening game, and the defensive line – including Ndamukong Suh, Mario Williams, Jordan Phillips and Jason Jones – sacked him three times. The offense missed a few opportunities to score more points, but it as much of an auspicious start as a loss can be to the Adam Gase era.