NFL Wild-Card Weekend: Miami Dolphins-Buffalo Bills betting preview (odds, lines, best bets)

Orchard Park, New York, USA; Buffalo Bills quarterback Josh Allen (17) delivers a handoff to running back Devin Singletary (26) in the third quarter at Highmark Stadium. Mandatory Credit: Mark Konezny-USA TODAY Sports

  • Bet Over 21 on the first-half point total: FanDuel is off this market by a full number, so both PFF Greenline and the play-by-play simulation find value on the over for the first-half point total.  
  • Bet Devin Singletary U11.5 carries: Singletary’s given way to James Cook and only the most positive Buffalo Bills game scripts will enable Singletary to come close to this rush attempt prop number. 
Estimated reading time: 4 minutes

Let’s dive into the best bets to make for Sunday's wild-card game between the Miami Dolphins and Buffalo Bills.

Game lines

The Tua Tagovailoa hope dissipated quickly, as this line moved down to -9.5 early in the week before retracing back through 10 and now sitting just below the key number 14. 

Starting Skylar Thompson against one of the best teams in football to start the postseason feels like a recipe for disaster. PFF Greenline thankfully doesn’t show any value on the current spread, and the play-by-play simulation sits closer to the look-ahead spread. 

Miami’s offense still has big-play potential and could take advantage of what is still a depleted Bill defense. Miami will need it's offense to hit some big plays to keep this game within the spread, but the real opportunity looks to be on the point total. Both teams rank top five in total explosive pass plays and have done little in the way of slowing the opposing team down. 

Miami is really good on their scripted play set while Buffalo performs better after their scripted play set, so this looks like an opportunity to bet on the first half point total rather than the full game. Both PFF Greenline and the play-by-play simulation find agree that the full game point total market has plenty of value at the current 43.5 number. 

Pick: Over 21 first half points -120 (FanDuel; bets playable to -125)

Player props

Player props continue to be one of the best approaches to betting on the NFL. If interested in macro-trends from the past three seasons, check out my midseason prop article.

One way to consistently find defined edges without blindly betting unders is by utilizing PFF's player props tool. The ability to adjust both number and price means you are always certain of the expected value for each prop bet. Let’s dive into the best player props to bet for Saturday's playoff game. 

Devin Singletary U11.5 carries (-105)

Singletary continues to give way to James Cook, who had more overall offensive snaps and rush attempts than Singletary for the first time in Week 18. Cook is clearly the more dynamic back and offers plenty in the passing game. Singletary should see most of his opportunities in the two-minute drill and in longer down-and-distance situations. If the Bills jump out to an early lead, all of Buffalo's back should be used to salt this game away, which is the only real path to Singletary going over this prop number. 

Anytime TD scorer pricing per FanDuel compared to play-by-play simulation
Player FanDuel Price Implied Probability Simulation Probability Value Difference
Stefon Diggs 110 47.6% 48.1% 0.4%
Josh Allen 125 44.4% 36.4% -8.0%
Devin Singletary 140 41.7% 42.9% 1.2%
Gabriel Davis 160 38.5% 40.6% 2.1%
Jeff Wilson Jr. 170 37.0% 40.4% 3.3%
Raheem Mostert 170 37.0% 38.3% 1.3%
Tyreek Hill 195 33.9% 36.9% 3.0%
James Cook 220 31.3% 34.5% 3.3%
Dawson Knox 220 31.3% 30.6% -0.7%
Jaylen Waddle 300 25.0% 29.7% 4.7%
Isaiah McKenzie 320 23.8% 19.3% -4.5%
Nyheim Hines 420 19.2% 9.2% -10.1%
Mike Gesicki 500 16.7% 19.3% 2.6%
Cole Beasley 750 11.8% 10.7% -1.0%
Khalil Shakir 750 11.8% 8.5% -3.3%
Trent Sherfield 1000 9.1% 10.9% 1.8%
Skylar Thompson 1100 8.3% 6.7% -1.7%
Durham Smythe 1400 6.7% 5.9% -0.8%
River Cracraft 2900 3.3% 3.9% 0.5%
Cedrick Wilson 2900 3.3% 3.0% -0.3%
Pick: James Cook (+220)

Click here to place bets at BetMGM

Same game parlay

Cook's utilization jumps off the page and because he is the more dynamic back, he should continue to get a larger share of the Bills' backfield usage. Given the injuries to Buffalo's defense, the Bills will need to be a dominant performance offensively, where they still have one of the highest explosive play rates in football. After a long stretch of uncertainty, expect the Bills to get back to their early season ways in a dress rehearsal for some big playoff matchups in upcoming weeks. Cook to score and an alternate Bills team total pays out an enticing price on Draftkings. 

  • James Cook Anytime TD
  • Buffalo Bills Team Total Points O34.5

Odds: DraftKings (+550)

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