Trying or not, these Dolphins are "tanking" the 2019 season with only competitive wagering offered
Surprisingly, there is no law in the United States that is specifically designed to protect the welfare of dolphins. Rather, the laws in the U.S. seek only to regulate the captivity industry and set up certain guidelines for capturing and confining wild dolphins. Clearly, as there is a world of difference between animal protection and animal regulation, this leaves a gaping loophole through which dolphins can be abused and exploited.
Sadly, these same laws and guidelines may pertain to NFL teams looking to exploit, hurt, abuse and embarrass the Miami Dolphins this upcoming season. Anyone reading about their 'fire sale' the past week should be concerned protecting their existence between a likely zero to possibly two-win outcome.
In "the tank"
The Dolphins more than obviously had sacrificed this season long before trading away three of their best, most high-profile and highly paid players over the weekend. In saying goodbye to former first round choice Laremy Tunsil, starting wide receiver Kenny Stills and solid veteran linebacker Kiko Alonso, the Fins have bankrupted all hopes of being competitive.
They also frightfully may have left veteran quarterback Ryan Fitzpatrick and young Josh Rosen susceptible to injury. Although they both wouldn’t admit it, we would have to wonder have knowing this would happen whether either QB would have agreed heading to South Florida. As for most of the rest of the team, they're likely happy to have NFL jobs, hoping to be part of a roster nucleus for perhaps better future days.
The most serious and obvious concern reflects on the Dolphins tanking (purposely losing) to enhance their potential for next year's NFL draft. An allegation that new Dolphins head coach Brian Flores firmly denies and finds rather offensive.
The Miami coach, offering what has become the company line despite parting ways with most of its veteran talent this off-season, reiterated Sunday that the team is absolutely, not actively looking to lose in 2019.
"This game means a lot to me," Flores said, per Adam H. Beasley of the Miami Herald. "I wouldn't disrespect the game with that. Again, no, we're not. We're going to try to win every game. I think that's disrespectful to even to say that. ... It's disheartening to hear people talk about it, to even say that. For a guy who respects the game as much as the game has done for me, when people say that, it's extremely sad."
Key word: Try
Although Flores would pass a lie detector in being sincere, the key word in his explanation is "try". No different than the Miami Marlins trying to win the World Series or the Phoenix Suns out to win the NBA title. They all TRY but the reality is it just ain't happening.
Even more revealing was Flores' explanation on trading away Tunsil. He defended the deal by citing the massive haul the Houston Texans sent the Dolphins' way.
"You guys saw the compensation," he said. "He was part of that. It was one of those things where he's a very good player. I like him, but at the end of the day we just felt like this was the best move for us. You got to make tough decisions when you're sitting in this seat. At the end of the day, we felt like this was best. As part of the overall deal, the Dolphins netted a 2020 first-round pick, 2021 first-round pick and a 2021 second-round pick from the Texans."
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Attn: Commissioner Goodell Re: Late season point spreads, NFL season win totals, etc.
It didn't take long for the 'Andrew Luck effect' to have some newsworthy company. No doubt the Dolphins housecleaning left a significant mark on the wagering boards and most problematic could be a serious problem toward the end of the NFL season. Here’s why:
Comically, perhaps the Best Bet found might be a proposition wager at preferred sportsbook 5Dimes. They list the hapless Dolphins as a strong +200 favorite to finish the season with the NFL’s worst record. Their nearest competitor is the Cincinnati Bengals at +500 and the Arizona Cardinals at +600 to LOSE the most games. Those 2-1 odds look unbelievably juicy compared to mulling through a very competitive field of Super Bowl future book contenders. By the way, the New England Patriots are currently favored at an unattractive +725 at 5Dimes.
If you still believe in Santa Claus, the Fins are +30000 (300-1) to win the Super Bowl at top-listed sportsbook Bovada. Realistic odds about 25,000-1 or somewhere near Miley Cyrus leaving her girlfriend for me.
First red flag of tanking may involve Dolphins games in December. Any bettors holding Miami Dolphins (+) tickets could be quite suspicious of fourth quarter touchdowns scored against their defense. Or perhaps a poor late turnover on offense. It's one thing suspecting a team of lackadaisical play positively enabling their drafting future. But when it potentially personally affects a wagering ticket, look out. Unfortunately, the Dolphins may be held accountable for circumstances simply caused by lack of football talent.
Ping Pong, Anybody?
You heard it here first department.
The Dolphins drastic house cleaning this season in planning the next five to ten years of their football future may start a new trend. Especially, in this current age of demanding stars seeking up front multi-million-dollar contracts, making the current NFL equal team payroll system quite challenging.
Don't be surprised at all if the NFL very soon adopts an updated draft system, like the ever evolving one invented by the NBA. Look for those ping pong balls determining the fate of your favorite teams' draft pick in the future. As of now, it appears that Alabama QB Tua Tagovailoa might as well start shopping for his estate in Miami along with a few other first round rookies next year. Coach Flores would deny it, but Fitzpatrick and Rosen are just killing time. Even LeBron wasn't set-up as such a lock.
Here's hoping Commissioner Goodell takes notice as quickly as possible before unnecessary trouble looms. Last year was about changing pass interference penalties. This season might be focused upon new draft rules and regulations. And protecting Dolphins.
Glenn Greene covers the games from a betting angle every week exclusively at OSGA.com. For weekly betting insights, including previews and picks from Glenn, click here.