Miami Dolphins vs. Pittsburgh Steelers Point Spread – Pick

Miami Dolphins (0-6 SU, 2-4 ATS) vs. Pittsburgh Steelers (2-4 SU, 4-2 ATS)

Week 8 NFL
Date/Time: Monday Night Football, October 28, 2019 at 8:15PM EST
Where: Heinz Field, Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania

By Loot, NFL Football Handicapper,

Point Spread: MIA +14.5/PIT -14.5
Over/Under Total: 42.5

On Monday Night Football, the Miami Dolphins come into Heinz Field to take on the Pittsburgh Steelers in week eight action. Miami faces a tough road task, even in what has been a depreciated Steelers squad. Last week was a bye for Pittsburgh, as they had time to collect their thoughts after a difficult first 6 games of the season. Showing life though, they were able to enter the bye with some nice momentum, beating the Chargers on the road, 24-17, and now looking for some better things against a Miami team that showed some life last week, despite a 31-21 loss to Buffalo where the score didn’t tell the whole story. Still, at 0-6, it’s not easy to find the silver lining on the 2019 Dolphins. Maybe they can spring the upset or at least make a run at the spread. Who will get the job done this week at Heinz?

After an 0-3 start, the Steelers have won two of three games. Sitting at 2-4 is certainly not what they had in mind. After all, this was supposed to be the year they re-established themselves as AFC contenders. Between the departures, poor play, and injuries, it just wasn’t in the cards. But they have shown some life lately and with the worst team in the league coming into town, they can get to 3-4 and who knows? All their issues aside, they’ve been pretty solid at the betting windows lately, with four straight covers.

Perhaps Mason Rudolph can make a statement moving forward. The Pittsburgh backup QB should be recovered from a bad hit a few weeks ago, with the bye week helping him get around to speed. Granted, the Steelers’ offense leaves a lot to be desired with only a faint resemblance in this state to their former high standing. But context is important and at home against the worst defense in football might be a time to shine. Look for good games from James Conner (questionable), JuJu Smith-Schuster, Diontae Johnson, and James Washington because the Miami defense has problems-galore across all areas.


I see an improving and playmaking Pittsburgh defense making a lot of problems for a mistake-prone Miami offense. They didn’t start off that great this season, looking like they had taken a few steps back. But with each passing week, they are becoming stouter and more resolute. Adding Devin Bush to the middle is really starting to pay off, as their linebacker corps has been stepping up with regular big plays. Bush has already secured a half-dozen turnovers and scored a TD. Adding Minkah Fitzpatrick to the secondary has given their pass-defense more teeth. This could easily be a spot where we see their upward trajectory continue.

It looked good for a while against Buffalo on Sunday. Miami was leading 14-9 at the beginning of the last quarter, only to go on to lose, 31-21. Still, as 17-point road dogs, they covered the spread for the second straight week. While far from a respectable team, much less a winning one, they have shown some pluckiness the last few weeks, at least being competitive in their games and starting to notch some covers. Granted, some of their limitations are being exposed and their late-game performance in the two times they could have won left a lot to be desired, but we’ve arrived at a point in the season where it might be foolish to completely dismiss their chances.

With 282 yards through the air, Miami QB Ryan Fitzpatrick was able to have this ‘Fins offense on the move for stretches of the game last week. He connected well with rookie Preston Williams, with DeVante Parker and Allen Hurns getting some good production on the afternoon. With Mark Walton and Kenyan Drake, they moved the ball on the ground pretty well, with Fitzpatrick and Kalen Ballage also adding a score on the ground. While nothing to write home about, it wasn’t a totally bad showing for an offense that has no stars on it. Against a better Pittsburgh defense, however, we’ll see how well they do.

We’ll also see how a Miami defense in its second straight road game will fare, after they melted down late against a Buffalo offense they had in check for much of the afternoon. But with 7 of Buffalo’s points coming on a kick return for a TD, it wasn’t that bad of a showing for a maligned Miami “D” that ranks toward the bottom in every major category. Buffalo quarterback Josh Allen was held to just over 200 yards, a needed positive development for a secondary that has been vile up until now. And while Allen and vet Frank Gore had some nice runs for Buffalo, Miami was able to stop them from really getting on a roll on the ground. With Taco Charlton and Vince Biegel getting sacks, they were able to apply at least a little pressure, as well.

This is a matchup that is strange in a lot of ways between two teams who used to be consistent powers in this conference and have fallen on hard times. At home, the Steelers have something more of substance to play for, as their season is actually still alive. A win here would have them at least vaguely in the picture. I sense a more-difficult day for the Miami offense, with the Steelers’ defense becoming more stout. It might actually be the playmaking ability of the Pittsburgh “D” that could turn this game in their favor. I see the Steelers pulling away in the second half, registering the win and cover on MNF.

Loot’s Prediction to Cover the Point Spread: I’m betting on the Pittsburgh Steelers minus 14.5 points. Tired of your credit card not working for sportsbook deposit? End that problem today and bet MNF by signing up at Bovada Sportsbook where your credit card WILL work and where you’ll receive a generous 50% sign-up bonus!

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