Baltimore Ravens vs. Miami Dolphins Preview
Where: Hard Rock Stadium, Miami Gardens
When: Thursday, August 17, 2017, 7:00 PM ET
TV Broadcast: NBC
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Betting on the Baltimore Ravens (+135)
No Joe Flacco, no problem for the Ravens, who relied mostly on a formidable defense to take down the Washington Redskins in Week 1 of the preseason, 23-3. Backup quarterback Ryan Mallet went 9-of-18 for 58 yards from under center while Josh Woodrum was a perfect 4-of-4 for 85 yards with the lone passing touchdown in the game for Baltimore.
Regardless of Woodrum’s perfect game, it’s Mallet who’ll dominate the quarterback snaps as he continues his preparation and anticipation of a possible regular season Week 1 absence by Flacco, who’s nursing a back ailment. The Ravens racked up 132 yards on the ground versus Washington and with Miami’s seemingly flimsy run defense in its Week 1 win over the Falcons, Terrance West and Javorius Allen could be in for a good Thursday night. West rushed for 23 yards and a touchdown in five carries, while Allen looks to improve his inefficient 21 rushing yards on eight carries in the Washington game.
Going back to their defense, the Ravens allowed just 99 passing yards and 39 rushing yards to the Redskins, which could be taken as a strong message to Miami.
Betting on the Miami Dolphins (-155)
At least for one preseason game, the Dolphins knew what it felt like to the New England Patriots in Super Bowl 51, when Miami earned a come-from behind 23-20 win over the Atlanta Falcons last week. Down 20-10 in the fourth quarter, the Dolphins fought back with the successful comeback bid capped by a 99-yard touchdown reception from rookie wideout Damore’ea Stringfellow from quarterback David Fales.
Without Jay Cutler and a mere cameo appearance from Matt Moore, Fales had the lion share of the snaps under center, passing for 184 yards on 8 -of-17 passing with a pair of touchdowns and an interception. Cutler expressed his intent to play against the Ravens while acknowledging that it’s for head coach Adam Gase to decide. But knowing Cutler has got get at least a feel of his teammates in a competitive setup, Gase could deploy Cutler, who could also work his way back to great cardiovascular shape.
Watch out for DeVante Parker, who saw little action in the Falcons game. Parker is expected by some to finally have that breakout year for the Dolphins but one target and a catch for five yards in a preseason game won’t do it for his (football fantasy) loyalists.
More life will have to come from Kenyan Drake and the Dolphins’ backfield, however. The team just had 60 rushing yards against Atlanta. They can’t afford to look one-dimensional opposite the ferocious Ravens’ D.
Baltimore (+3) wins, 24-13.
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