Bet of the Day – Miami Dolphins at Baltimore Ravens, Nov. 7, 2010

Miami Dolphins (+5) at Baltimore Ravens (-5), Over/Under 41

Completely whiffed on the first leg of yesterday’s bet.  Back to the NFL today.  Taking on the Dolphins and Ravens game; it was the most talked about game this week.

Miami is a pretty good team.  They don’t score very efficiently but grind out games.  There has been a lot of talk this week about their 4-0 road record and 0-3 home record.  It’s not as surprising as one might think.  Of their 4 road games, only the Packers are in the top 10 Sagarin Ratings.  Of their 3 home games, all 3 are in the top 4.  The average home opponent rating is 26.85 while the average road opponent rating is 18.14.  The Dolphins average 5.3 yards per play (YPP) and 18.1 yard per point scored (YPPT) on offense.  On defense, they allow 5.3 YPP and 14.5 YPPT.  QB Chad Henne averages 6.87 yards per attempt (YPA) with 8 TDs and 7 INTs for a 82.5 QB rating.  The Dolphins will have their hands full today with a rested and focused Baltimore team.

The Ravens are 5-2 and undefeated at home.   The Ravens have had the exact opposite scheduling as the Dolphins; they have had their toughest teams on the road.  They Ravens are 2-1 against the same teams Miami is 0-3 against; the only difference is Baltimore played them on the road.  The Ravens average 5.2 YPP and 16.0 YPPT on offense.  On defense, they allow 5.4 YPP and 17.0 YPPT.  QB Joe Flacco averages 7.08 YPA for 10 TDs and 6 INTs with an 84.2 QB rating.  Baltimore’s defense generally takes criticism personally and responds well.  They were “exposed” over the last few weeks and have had an extra week to game plan.  Expecting a big effort from Baltimore.

The Sagarin Ratings have Baltimore 24.88 and Miami 22.50.  With the 2.67 home advantage, fair line is Ravens -5.05.  According to pregame.com, 50% of spread bets are on each team but the line has moved from Ravens -4 to -5.  Not a huge sharp swing there but there is definitely money on Baltimore.

My football model predicts Baltimore 22.1 over Miami 18.0 for 40.1 total points.  These teams are almost identical in yardage gained and allowed.  Baltimore is more efficient on offense and defense.  The key variance contributor is both team’s defensive passing yardage allowed.  Which ever team can keep the other team’s passing offense closer to their mean should have the advantage.  Baltimore’s passing defense hasn’t been great in their last 3 games.

Today, I am taking the home favorite.  Here’s why.  Baltimore is more complete team.  Baltimore is coming off a bye week with most of the talk being about Miami’s winning road record.  Baltimore is more efficient on offense and defense.  Miami has serious red zone woes.  Bet on the Baltimore Ravens -5.

Follow me on Twitter for all my picks.  Good Luck!

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