The undefeated Miami Dolphins travel to Cincinnati to take on the Bengals, who are coming off their first regular season win. The Dolphins are coming off a massive win against the Bills, where they only had the ball for 19 minutes. Since 2015, teams that hold the ball for less than 20 minutes without overtime are 3-22. The Bengals beat the New York Jets this past weekend but continued to have an unsuccessful running game and relied on Joe Burrow’s arm to win.
Vegas Line: Bengals -4
Over – Under: 47
The injury reports do not have a designation status; as soon as that is out, this will get updated. For now, I put the most recent practice designation: FP = Full Participant, LP = Limited Participant, and DNP = Did Not Participate.
Dolphins: QB Tua Tagovailoa (Questionable), WR Jaylen Waddle (Questionable), WR Cedrick Wilson Jr. (Questionable), OT Terron Armstead (Questionable), DT Raekwon Davis (Questionable), CB Xavien Howard (Questionable), S Brandon Jones (Questionable)
Bengals: TE Drew Sample (Out), OT La’el Collins (Questionable), DT D.J. Reader (Out), LB Germaine Pratt (Questionable)
Data to Know Provided by TruMedia
Dolphins Offense vs. Bengals Defense
- Tagovailoa averages 9.2 yards per attempt, 8.3 air yards per attempt and a 7.9% passing touchdown rate.
- The Bengals this season are giving up 5.9 yards per attempt, 8.2 air yards per attempt and a 1.7% passing touchdown rate.
- They have played Mitchell Trubisky, Cooper Rush and Joe Flacco this year, so these numbers are skewed towards bad quarterback play.
- Coverage-wise, the Bengals have run 66.1% zone and have blitzed on 22.6% of plays.
- They use man coverage 60.7% of the time when they blitz.
- Tagovailoa averages 9.0 yards per attempt against zone coverage. Against man coverage, he averages 10.7 yards per attempt, and against the blitz, he averages 7.6 yards per attempt.
- When Tagovailoa has been blitzed, team’s have played zone coverage 77% of the time. Since the Bengals play so much man coverage when they blitz, I expect to see Tagovailoa’s yards per attempt against the blitz go up.
- Tyreek Hill and Jaylen Waddle are two of three wide receivers averaging more than 3.0 yards per route run.
- Hill leads the team in man coverage target share at 40.9% and blitz target share at 33.3%
- Waddle leads the team in zone coverage target share at 31.6%
- Nobody else on the team has more than a 10% target share.
- Mike Gesicki has run 15 more routes than Durham Smythe this season. But most of those routes came in the Ravens game.
- Smythe ran more routes against Buffalo.
- With Wilson Jr. getting injured, Sherfield ran 77% of the routes last weekend.
- Chase Edmonds and Raheem Mostert are pretty much equal in this backfield.
- Edmonds has 53 routes run to Mostert’s 48 routes run
- Edmonds leads in third-down snaps and goal-line carries.
- Mostert leads in rushing attempts and rushes in the red zone.
- The Bengals are giving up 8.1 yards per reception to running backs, which ranks eighth highest in the NFL.
- So far, the Bengals are only giving up 3.6 yards per carry, which ranks in the top 10.
WATCH MORE: Should You Start Ja’Marr Chase or Tee Higgins?
Bengals Offense vs. Dolphins Defense
- Burrow averages 6.5 yards per attempt, 6.7 air yards per attempt and a 4.8% touchdown rate.
- The biggest concern for Burrow is this 10.1% sack rate because he has only been blitzed on 17.5% of plays.
- The Dolphins are giving up 7.6 yards per attempt, 8.03 air yards per attempt and a 4.9% touchdown rate.
- They are playing man coverage on 44.0% of plays and blitzing on 31.1% of dropbacks.
- Burrow averages 8.7 yards per attempt, 4.6 air yards per attempt and a 14.3% touchdown rate against the blitz this season.
- Burrow is getting the ball out quickly and relying on his wide receivers to create yards after the catch.
- Chase leads the team in target share against zone, man and the blitz on the season.
- When Higgins missed time against the Steelers due to injury, the Steelers used a lot of man coverage.
- Chase’s air yards per target is at 8.3, which is four yards less than last season and is the lowest amongst the Bengals’ receiver group.
- Higgins and Chase play primarily out wide but mix into the slot between 15% and 30% of the time.
- Boyd has taken most of his reps from the slot this season.
- The Dolphins’ run defense has been fantastic to begin the year, giving up 3.5 yards per carry.
- With how often they blitz, they have left the running back open and have given up the fourth most receptions to RBs.
- Mixon will be the best RB they’ve faced this season, but he is only averaging 2.8 yards per carry.
- Mixon accounts for 66.7% of the rushing attempts but has played fewer third downs than Samaje Perine.
- Mixon has been the most used back in the receiving room, making him a great player to start this week since Miami tends to leave RBs open when they blitz
- Ja’Marr Chase
- I believe Chase wins in these man coverage situations and has a big day because Xavien Howard is dealing with a lingering groin injury during a short week.
- Tyreek Hill
- Hill is the healthier of Miami’s speedy wide receiver duo, and “owes” cornerback Eli Apple for the things he posted on Twitter after the AFC championship.
- Joe Burrow
- Burrow will see the most man coverage and blitzes he has seen all year. With how talented his group is at wide receiver, playing him will multiple pass catchers makes sense.
- Tua Tagovailoa
- The injuries are a significant concern, but I expect him to play effectively off the short week. Additionally, the 300-yardage bonus should be available in this negative projected game script.
- Joe Mixon
- The Bengals are four-point favorites preaching about how they want to run the ball effectively, and Mixon should get plenty of targets out of the backfield. This all makes Mixon an easy player to include at the multiplier spot.
- Mike Gesicki
- We will see his snaps increase in a negative game script, so I am keeping him as a multiplier option.
- Dolphins D/ST
- Pressures lead to turnovers, and this Dolphins’ defense can score touchdowns. This is a rare showdown slate where I am comfortable getting to the Dolphins’ defense with multiple Bengals players.
- Evan McPherson
- Miami’s pressure should lead to sacks of Burrow, which should lead to long field goals.
- Jaylen Waddle
- Waddle is dealing with a groin injury, which is why he’s a flex play. Waddle will still be involved in the offense, but I expect Hill to be the most featured WR.
- Tee Higgins
- Higgins is a player I will look to get to in all builds that do not include Chase as the multiplier. It isn’t because of the situation; it’s because of the pricing.
- Tyler Boyd
- Boyd will not be a popular player in my builds because he should be a safety blanket for Burrow when Miami brings pressure.
- Chase Edmonds
- Edmonds’ third-down snaps and his carries near the goal line are why he is still on the pool.
- Raheem Mostert
- Pricing makes Mostert a better value, but Edmonds has a more meaningful role this year.
- Jason Sanders
- Sanders hasn’t missed this year, but they haven’t settled for field goals.
- Bengals D/ST
- Tagovailoa has had some interceptions dropped this year, and the offensive line is a little banged up. I don’t love the Bengals’ defense, but they should be in the pool.
- Trent Sherfield
- Wilson is the injury to monitor. Sherfield will see the most increase in snaps if Wilson cannot go.
- Alec Ingold
- There has been at least one play per game that has been schemed up to Ingold, and he is always an option near the goal line.