The Miami Dolphins have crawled, clawed, and climbed their way from a 1-7 start to the season to the seventh seed in the AFC playoff picture. Becoming the first team to have a seven-game losing streak and a seven-game winning streak in the same season, the Dolphins are in position to add another “first” to their 2021 resume as the first NFL team to start 1-7 and make the postseason. While a Week 17 loss would not eliminate them from the postseason, it would push them to the brink unless a lot of help from other teams around the league.
Who is standing in the way of the Dolphins this week? Of course, it is quarterback Ryan Tannehill. Miami selected Tannehill in the first round of the 2012 NFL Draft. Seven years later, questions still surrounded Tannehill and if he could be Miami’s franchise quarterback, ultimately leading to the team trading him to the Tennessee Titans. In 2019, his first season with the Titans, Tannehill led the league in passer rating, won NFL Comeback Player of the Year, and was selected to the Pro Bowl. The Titans made it to the AFC Championship Game that season, then were back in the playoff last year.
Now, the Dolphins need to beat Tannehill and the Titans to turn Week 18 into a showdown with the New England Patriots where the playoffs could be on the line.
The oddsmakers at DraftKings Sportsbook on Sunday night set the initial spread for the Dolphins at Titans game at 3.5 points in favor of Tennessee. During last night’s 20-3 victory for the Dolphins over the New Orleans Saints on Monday Night Football, the line was removed from the board, then came back up this morning with the Titans a three-point favorite.
The over/under for the game is 41 points.
Will COVID-19 impact the teams and the line throughout the week? Can the Dolphins upset the Titans and their former quarterback? Will the Dolphins still be in control of their postseason lives when Sunday comes to an end?