As we head into Week 3, one of the most surprising teams so far this year has got to be the Las Vegas Raiders. Derek Carr is currently leading the NFL in passing yards with 817, while the next closest competitor is Kyler Murray, who has yet to crack 700.
Needless to say, Carr has been doing quite well despite most analysts out there projecting the Raiders to start off the season 0-2 and maybe even 0-3 after what we saw out of Miami in 2020. None of that matters now, as the Raiders took down Lamar Jackson and the Baltimore Ravens in their season-opener and just upset the Steelers in Week 2 in Pittsburgh.
After two huge wins to start the season, the Raiders now head back home to take on a Dolphins team that just got absolutely embarrassed at home against the Bills 35-0. It was just the second time in Dolphins’ history that they’ve been shut out at home.
The result was bad enough, but Miami (1-1) also had quarterback Tua Tagovailoa leave the game with a rib injury. ESPN’s Adam Schefter reported on Wednesday that Tagovailoa suffered fractured ribs and will not play on Sunday, which means backup Jacoby Brissett will start against the Raiders.
This should be a matchup that stays in favor of the Raiders up until game time and there are several intriguing bets worth looking at in this latest matchup in the NFL pick of the day series.
Please note that all odds are current as of Friday, September 24.
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Dolphins vs Raiders Prediction
As of Friday morning, the odds aren’t overbearing in either team’s favor, but are starting to favor the Raiders more and more. While the moneyline started with the Raiders at -180, that number has now crossed -200 in most places after the public learned about the extent of Tua Tagovailoa’s rib injury. I expect this line might continue to shift a bit more, but should stick solidly in favor of the Raiders as we approach kickoff.
Derek Carr has been doing a good job of getting more offensive weapons involved in the Las Vegas offense with Henry Ruggs III and Bryan Edwards seeing more touches, but he still has been force-feeding Darren Waller the ball. The Dolphins have a stout defense, despite just letting the Bills put up 35 points, but that potent Buffalo offense is led by one of last year’s MVP front-runners in Josh Allen.
As hot as this Raiders’ offense led by Carr has been, I am expecting a lower-scoring matchup here. The last time these two teams met, in Week 16 last year, Miami won 26-25 on a last-second field goal after Ryan Fitzpatrick led the Dolphins on three scoring drives in the 4th quarter. I’m putting my money on a lower point total largely due to the Dolphins quarterback situation and Miami being ranked 31st in total offense so far this year.
Prediction: Raiders 24, Dolphins 17
Dolphins vs Raiders Best Bets
Best Bet: Raiders -4 (-110 at BetMGM)
The Raiders won by six over the Ravens and nine points over the Steelers in their first two games of the season. In both of those games, they beat the odds and covered the points, and I expect them to do the same this week.
The Dolphins have struggled on offense this year, with and without Tagovailoa, as they are averaging only 237.5 yards of offense per game, which is the second-lowest in the NFL. Meanwhile, the Raiders are averaging 458 yards per contest, the most in the league so far this season.
Make no mistake, after what we saw in 2020, I believe the Dolphins are capable of beating the Raiders. Their defense is solid all around and is still arguably a top-10 defense in the league. However, given the way the Miami offense is playing, even if Tagovailoa was in the lineup, they haven’t been moving the ball well enough to keep up with Las Vegas’ high-flying offense.
I’ll take the Raiders by more than a field goal in this one.
This line may move after the news of the injury to Tagovailoa, however, so be sure to keep an eye on our NFL gameday odds.
Best Bet: Under 44 Total Points (-110 at BetMGM)
The Raiders’ first two games of the season have finished with a combined point total of 43 and 60 points. The Dolphins on the other hand, have had lower-scoring games with just 33 and 35 combined points in their first two contests.
Las Vegas’ defense has forced a total of three turnovers so far this year and has totaled five sacks against two great offenses in the Ravens and Steelers. Now the Raiders are going up against a capable backup, but still a backup, in Jacoby Brissett.
Despite getting destroyed by the Bills last week, the Dolphins only allowed Josh Allen to throw for 179 yards on 33 attempts. He did throw two touchdowns and one interception, but it’s definitely worth noting the passing yardage numbers weren’t fantastic.
This Dolphins defense is near the bottom of the league in stopping the run after the first two weeks, giving up the fifth-most rushing yards to opposing offenses at 134 yards per game. This week they’ll go up against Josh Jacobs, who is not 100%, and Kenyan Drake, who has just 20 rushing yards on 13 carries this year. While the matchup might look good on paper for the running backs, I don’t expect much and think this Dolphins defense can play much better than it has been.
All of this being said, I expect this to be a bit lower scoring and right now you can get in on 45 or fewer points with BetMGM. Carr might be leading the league in passing yards after two weeks, but I fully expect his numbers to come back down to earth, starting this week in a low-scoring matchup. I’ve got the point total at 41 for this one, so even if the total moves a bit between now and game time, you can likely still get in on the under.
Dolphins vs Raiders Same Game Parlay Picks
Same Game Parlay Odds: +280 at DraftKings
- Raiders -3.5 (-120)
- Under 44.5 (-120)
This same game parlay on DraftKings allows us to get to a really appealing price on a couple of wagers that I previously made a case for.