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What reduced capacity could mean for Dolphins point spreads in 2020

The Chiefs will have 22 percent capacity at Arrowhead Stadium to start the 2020 NFL season. We break downn what it could mean for the point spread against the Texans.

General view of of the stadium prior to the game between the San Francisco 49ers and the Kansas City Chiefs in Super Bowl LIV at Hard Rock Stadium. Kirby Lee-USA TODAY Sports

The Miami Dolphins will host the Buffalo Bills in Week 2 as their home opener at Hard Rock Stadium, and on Monday, the team announced its attendance plans amidst the Covid-19 pandemic. The team is permitted to have a maximum of 13,000 fans in attendance for the Week 2 contest. Season ticket holders will get first priority to buy tickets based on their tenure.

Hard Rock Stadium holds 65,326 fans, which means this is roughly 20 percent of capacity. The team specifically only referenced the Week 2 game, but this likely means they will use that capacity as the baseline for each home game moving forward.

Bills head coach Sean McDermott is not pleased with the decision to have different rules in place for different stadiums. He told Bills reporter Dan Fetes he thinks it is “ridiculous” and creates an uneven playing field.

The Dolphins are currently a field goal underdog at DraftKings Sportsbook for the Bills contest, and are a 2.5-point favorite against the New York Jets in Week 10. In sports betting, home field advantage is viewed as being worth roughly 2.5 to 3 points. Some teams like the Chiefs, Seahawks, and Saints have a more significant advantage than other teams, and might go upward of 3.5 points.

DK Sportsbook oddsmaker Johnny Avello said he would cut a home field in half with no fans in the stands, but we’re still sorting out what a partial attendance might mean. There is still benefit of knowing your home stadium and locker room, and not having to travel, so you still get some benefit to playing at home. But, it will not be nearly what it would be if there were a full contingent of fans in the stands.

The Dolphins will become slightly longer shots against Buffalo — maybe to 4 or 4.5 — while they will tighten as favorites against the Jets — maybe to 1.5 or so. Plenty could still change before these game, but if you like the Dolphins in either game, you might want to wait for the lines to move.

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