Playing in the NFC East is the only thing keeping the New York Giants afloat in their bid to earn an invite to the postseason party. Despite three consecutive losses, which have come by a combined 10 points, New York remains in a three-way tie for the division lead as it prepares to visit another underachieving team in the Miami Dolphins on Monday night.
The Giants blew a 10-point fourth-quarter lead in an eventual overtime loss to the New York Jets last week, their fifth defeat when holding a lead late in regulation. “We’ve got to play better at some critical moments in the game,” quarterback Eli Manning said. “We’re just not making that crucial play to get us the win.” The firing of Joe Philbin and subsequent hiring of Dan Campbell gave the Dolphins a brief jolt, but they are still residing in the basement of the AFC East. Miami halted a two-game skid by holding off a late comeback by Baltimore in a 15-13 victory last week.
TV: 8:30 p.m. ET, ESPN.
LINE HISTORY: There has been no love for the Dolphins since opening as 2-point home favorites. They have been bet all the way to 2-point pups. As for the total, it opened at 46.5, was bet down to 45.5 and has been bet up once again to the opening number.
Giants – QB E. Manning (probable Monday, ankle), S B. Meriweather (questionable Monday, knee), T M. Newhouse (questionable Monday, back), LB D. Kennard (questionable Monday, hamstring), DE R. Ayers (questionable Monday, shoulder), T E. Flowers (doubtful Monday, ankle).
Dolphins – WR K. Stills (questionable Monday, ankle), T J. James (questionable Monday, toe), LB C. McCain (questionable Monday, hip), DT E. Mitchell (questionable Monday, calf), WR R. Matthews (out indefinitely, ribs).
WEATHER REPORT: There is a 33 percent chance of rain at gametime, with a five to seven mile per hour wind blowing across the field from south to north. Temperatures will be in the mid 70’s.
COVERS POWER RANKINGS: Giants (0.5) – Dolphins (3.5) + home field (-3) = Pick
WHAT CAPPERS SAY:
ABOUT THE GIANTS (5-7, 6-5-1 ATS, 7-5 O/U): New York continues to be hindered by the lack of a running game, which ranks 29th in the league at 88.1 yards per game, putting too much pressure on Manning and a defense that is dead last against the pass with an average 314.5 yards allowed. The one constant for the Giants is second-year wideout Odell Beckham Jr., who has ripped off five straight 100-yard games and had 10 touchdown catches, including one in each of the last three contests. Since throwing for six TD passes at New Orleans on Nov. 1, Manning has seven touchdowns versus six interceptions in four games.
ABOUT THE DOLPHINS (5-7, 5-7 ATS, 6-6 O/U): Since amassing 82 points in its first two contests under Campbell, Miami has failed to score more than 20 in six straight games and cannot decide whether to emphasize the pass or the run. Offensive coordinator Bill Lazor was fired following a Nov. 29 loss to the Jets and his replacement, Zac Taylor, stressed the ground game with Lamar Miller rushing for 113 yards after being limited to 44 or fewer in his previous five contests. Ryan Tannehill attempted only 19 passes last week after unleashing 58 the previous week. Miami’s defense is 30th against the run (134.8 yards per game).
* Giants are 1-5 ATS in their last six Monday games.
* Dolphins are 0-6 ATS in their last six Monday games.
* Over is 4-1 in Giants last 5 road games vs. a team with a losing home record.
* Under is 4-0 in the last 4 meetings.
COVERS CONSENSUS: Bettors like the Giants on Monday night, with 67 percent of wagers on New York. Bettors also like the over with 55 percent of wagers on it.