Tua Tagovailoa ruled out for Dolphins vs. Bills; Teddy Bridgewater doubtful

By Adam Burke  (VSiN.com) 

January 11, 2023 12:08 PM

Dolphins now +13 vs. Bills for Wild Card Weekend game

The Miami Dolphins already faced long odds against their AFC East rivals in the Wild Card matchup on Sunday, but those odds got even longer on Wednesday. Head coach Mike McDaniel said that QB Tua Tagovailoa was not cleared to practice and is officially out for the Dolphins’ first playoff game since 2016.

Teddy Bridgewater is still dealing with a broken finger, so it appears that Skylar Thompson and Mike Glennon could be the only two guys on the QB depth chart for the 1:05 p.m. ET kickoff on January 15. 

Dolphins vs. Bills odds

What is interesting about the Tua announcement is that we saw some line movement on Miami on Tuesday that dropped the line from -10.5 to as low as -9 in the betting markets. That was seen as a sign that some positive news might be coming on Tua’s status, but it appears to have just been some market manipulation by bettors that wanted to get Buffalo under -10. It may have been a bad leak or a miscommunication from an insider, but it seems like sharp bettors just toyed with the line to get a number that they wanted.

Now the line is all the way out to -13 and it will likely go higher than that if Bridgewater is ruled out. Thompson and the Dolphins managed just nine offensive points in Week 18 against the Jets. Thompson was 20-of-31 for 152 yards and had three carries for three yards.

Biggest point spreads in NFL playoff history

The biggest point spread in NFL playoff history came in Super Bowl XXIX when the San Francisco 49ers were -19 against the San Diego Chargers. The 49ers won that game 49-26 to cover the enormous spread. The New York Jets were 18-point underdogs in Super Bowl III when they beat the Baltimore Colts 16-7 in the biggest playoff upset. We also saw the Minnesota Vikings -16.5 against the Arizona Cardinals in the Divisional Round of the 1998 playoffs.

There is a good chance that this line gets to 14 or goes through it, but it has a long way to go in order to be the biggest line in NFL playoffs since 2000. According to the KillerSports database, the Patriots were -16 in the Divisional Round of the 2016 playoffs against the Houston Texans and won that game 34-16. The Patriots were also -14.5 in the AFC Championship Game in the 2007 playoffs against the Chargers and won 21-12.

And, of course, the Rams were -14 in Super Bowl XXXVI against the Patriots when New England beat the “Greatest Show on Turf” 20-17 on Adam Vinatieri’s game-winning 48-yard field goal.

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