The Bills are a good team, striving to be great. The Dolphins are tanking, which means they’re striving to be worse. Josh Allen and the rest of the Bills’ offense have their best chance to date for a breakout game against the NFL’s bottom-ranked defense. Even with the potential of Ryan Fitzpatrick bringing some of his “FitzMagic” back to New Era Field, the Bills’ defense shouldn’t have much problem against the league’s next-to-last-ranked offense. All of which adds up to a predictable result. Bills, 30-10.
The one thing lacking in the Bills’ 4-1 start has been a dominating, start-to-finish performance. This has to be the week. The Dolphins are trading away their only good players in an active effort to lose games. They’re starting Ryan Fitzpatrick, for crying out loud. There is nothing to suggest this game should be remotely close. The Bills need to make sure it’s over by halftime, and then come out in the third quarter and rub salt in the wound. A showing like that will be a start in quieting some of the “are they for real?” talk. Bills 30-10.
It used to be that I would take the points on a big spread – 13 or more – every time, without even thinking about it. The big point spreads, historically, favor the underdog by better than 54%, I believe. (And 20-point spreads resoundingly favor the dog.) However, in recent years my perception is the worst teams seem to play worse than a decade or two ago. Cleveland went 4-12 vs. the spread in its 0-16 season and 5-11 in its 1-15 season. The 2-14 Niners were 5-10-1 against the spread in 2016. If you’re confident you’ve identified the worst two teams in the NFL, keep picking against them. Then add the fact the Bills are healthier coming out of the bye. Bills, 30-9.
Look for the Bills to take a quick lead and maintain control with the ground game against the tanking Dolphins, who have scored the fewest points in the NFL, and own the league’s worst defense in total yards and points allowed. Adrian Peterson rushed for 118 yards against Miami last week. Frank Gore should have similar success. And with the return of Devin Singletary from a hamstring injury, the outcome should not fall on Josh Allen’s shoulders. If the Bills need his late-game magic, something has gone terribly wrong. Bills, 27-6.
If the Dolphins aren’t tanking, then it’s difficult to explain any other reason why they’ve become the most futile franchise in the NFL this season. A win Sunday is almost a sure thing for the Bills against a team that’s last in total defense in the NFL and has scored 42 points in five games. Don’t anticipate a high-scoring game from the Bills, but expect them to score enough to win – and to help the Dolphins in their pursuit of the No. 1 pick in the 2020 NFL Draft. Bills, 21-9.