San Francisco 49ers at Dallas Cowboys: 2021 NFC Wild Card Round Pick

San Francisco 49ers (10-7) at Dallas Cowboys (12-5)

The Cowboys enter the post-season in great shape, ranking 2nd in point differential on the season at +188, while ranking 4th, 12th, 6th, and 4th in schedule adjusted offensive, defensive, special teams, and mixed efficiency, despite having several key players miss time on both sides of the ball. Left tackle Tyron Smith, right guard Zack Martin, right tackle La’El Collins, edge defenders DeMarcus Lawrence and Randy Gregory, linebacker Micah Parsons, wide receivers Amari Cooper, Ceedee Lamb, and Michael Gallup, and quarterback Dak Prescott all missed at least some time with injury this season and never made it through a full game together and won’t, with Gallup now on injured reserve with a torn ACL, but, aside from Gallup, the Cowboys will have ten of those aforementioned eleven players available for this game, which is better shape than they’ve been in for most of the season.

The Cowboys do draw a tough matchup though, as the 49ers also enter the post-season in good shape. They’re just 10-7 and have to go on the road as a wild card, but they were much better than their record suggested this season, as they faced a tough schedule and finished with a -5 turnover metric, which is not a predictive metric, while ranking 8th, 6th, 26th, and 7th in schedule adjusted offensive, defensive, special teams, and mixed efficiency which are much more predictive metrics based on yards per play and first down rate. The 49ers have also been a lot better in the second half of the season than the first, propelling them into the post-season with a 7-2 stretch after a 3-5 start, with their only two losses during that stretch coming by just one score in games in which they won the first down rate and yards per play battle.

The biggest reason for the 49ers’ second half improvement is that they have been healthier in the second half of the season than the first. The 49ers are still not 100% and have several key players who won’t return, but quarterback Jimmy Garoppolo, running back Elijah Mitchell, wide receiver Deebo Samuel, tight end George Kittle, left tackle Trent Williams, linebacker Fred Warner, safety Jimmie Ward, cornerback Emmanuel Mosley, linebacker Dre Greenlaw, defensive tackle Maurice Hurst, cornerback K’Waun Williams, and safety Jaquiski Tartt all missed at least some action this season and have since returned, like the Cowboys, so the 49ers are also in better shape than they have been in for most of the season right now.

The public seems to understand the 49ers are healthier and better than their record though, while the Cowboys could actually be a little underrated, only favored by a field goal at home, suggesting they are better than the 49ers, but not my much, even though the Cowboys are arguably one of the best teams in the league, given their balance in all three phases. My calculated line has the gap between these two teams a little bigger and favors the Cowboys by 5 points. There isn’t enough here for the Cowboys to be worth betting, but they should be the right side for pick ‘em purposes.

Dallas Cowboys 31 San Francisco 49ers 26

Pick against the spread: Dallas -3

Confidence: Low

Dallas Cowboys at Philadelphia Eagles: 2021 Week 18 NFL Pick

Dallas Cowboys (11-5) at Philadelphia Eagles (9-7)

This game is a very tough call because the Eagles have a significant number of players whose status is uncertain for this game. Starting guard Landon Dickerson and talented right tackle Lane Johnson are both highly questionable after not practicing all week, while their two best running backs Jordan Howard and Boston Scott, talented tight end Dallas Goedert, starting guard Nate Herbig, stud center Jason Kelce, top interior defender Fletcher Cox, starting linebackers Alex Singleton and Genard Avery, starting cornerback Avonte Maddox, and starting safety Rodney McLeod are all in COVID protocols, but could still clear them before gametime.

The Eagles are better than their 9-7 record, ranking 11th in point differential (+84) and 8th in schedule adjusted mixed efficiency (about 3.5 points above average), but they’ve also benefited significantly from being relatively healthy compared to most teams and they would be at a significant disadvantage if they were to be without all of most of the aforementioned players this week. That would justify the Cowboys being favored by 4.5 points in Philadelphia, even though the Cowboys will be down a pair of important players as well, with left tackle Tyron Smith and linebacker Micah Parsons both in COVID protocols and not expected to clear before gametime.

However, if a significant amount of those aforementioned players do play, we could be getting significant line value with the Eagles as long as the line doesn’t shift significantly to compensate. In fact, if the Eagles were to get all of the aforementioned players back this week, my calculated line would favor them by 1.5 points. All of those players playing may be an unlikely scenario, but I could definitely see a scenario where a significant amount of those players play and the line doesn’t take that into account enough. For now I am going to be on the Eagles for a no confidence pick, but I could definitely update this before gametime depending on what happens with the Eagles’ questionable players and where the line ends up.

Update: Aside from Jason Kelce, it doesn’t sound like the Eagles will be getting any of their questionable players back for this game and, beyond it, it doesn’t sound like the Eagles plan to take this game that seriously, with quarterback Jalen Hurts expected to play minimally to rest an ankle injury ahead of the playoffs and other starters also possibly being rested as well. The Eagles are locked into either the 6th or 7th seed, so the result of this game doesn’t really matter for them. The Cowboys, meanwhile, are mostly locked into the #4 seed, but have the opportunity to move up to 3 or 2 in certain improbable scenarios and they seem more likely to take this game seriously, even without Tyron Smith, Micah Parsons, and top cornerback Trevon Diggs, who was ruled out with COVID yesterday after this write up. Likely because of Diggs’ absence, this line has dropped to 3.5, but, for all the interceptions Diggs has, he also leads the league in yards allowed, so his absence isn’t as big of a deal as it seems, while the fact that the Eagles are unlikely to take this game seriously with many key players in COVID protocols and nothing substantial to play for is much more impactful than Diggs’ absence. I am switching my pick to the Cowboys, though this will remain a no confidence pick in a game with uncertain level of motivation for both teams.

Dallas Cowboys 24 Philadelphia Eagles 20

Pick against the spread: Dallas -3.5

Confidence: None

Arizona Cardinals at Dallas Cowboys: 2021 Week 17 NFL Pick

Arizona Cardinals (10-5) at Dallas Cowboys (11-4)

The Cardinals started the season 7-0, but have since fallen back to earth, going just 3-5 in their past 8 games. The +8 turnover margin they had in their first seven games was always going to be unsustainable (+2 in eight games since), but the Cardinals have also suffered a significant amount of injuries that have caused this team to not play as well on either side of the ball. Quarterback Kyler Murray has returned from a three game absence, but he remains without top wide receiver DeAndre Hopkins and has consistently been missing at least one talented offensive lineman. 

Left guard Justin Pugh and center Rodney Hudson have returned, but this week he will be without arguably his most important offensive lineman, left tackle DJ Humphries. Meanwhile, the Cardinals’ defense has been without top interior defender JJ Watt and top cornerback Robert Alford, who will be joined on the sideline by slot cornerback Marco Wilson and Watt’s replacement Jordan Phillips, while talented edge defenders Devon Kennard and Markus Golden could join them if they can’t return from the COVID protocols in time.

Dallas, meanwhile, is arguably as healthy as they have been all season. Left tackle Tyron Smith, right guard Zack Martin, right tackle La’El Collins, edge defenders DeMarcus Lawrence and Randy Gregory, wide receivers Amari Cooper, Ceedee Lamb, and Michael Gallup, and quarterback Dak Prescott have all missed at least some time with injury and have not made it through a full game together yet, but all nine of those players are available this week, which is very significant as they are among their most important players.

Despite their injuries, Dallas has still been one of the best teams in the league this year, ranking 6th, 13th, 4th, and 4th in schedule adjusted offensive, defensive, special teams, and mixed efficiency and they have been better in recent weeks as they have gotten healthier. The Cardinals, meanwhile, rank 13th, 18th, 17th, and 9th respectively and have struggled in recent weeks because of key players missing time. We have lost a lot of line value in the past week with this line moving up to 6, but my calculated line is 10, which would become 13 if Golden and Kennard both miss. I want to lock this in now and may increase this bet up to a possible Pick of the Week depending on what changes before gametime.

Update: Both Golden and Kennard are out and the line has stayed put at six, so I want to make this my Pick of the Week.

Dallas Cowboys 30 Arizona Cardinals 17

Pick against the spread: Dallas -6

Confidence: Pick of the Week

Washington Football Team at Dallas Cowboys: 2021 Week 16 NFL Pick

Washington Football Team (6-8) at Dallas Cowboys (10-4)

This is one of the toughest calls of the week for me, as my calculated line is exactly where this line is, favoring the Cowboys by 10 at home over Washington. I can’t find an angle to favor either side in this game, although it’s possible that could change before gametime, given the ever-changing nature of teams’ COVID lists, but for now, it’s very hard to pick a side. I’m taking Washington purely to fade the public and because this is a slightly more meaningful game for them, as their season would be over with a loss, but this is my lowest confidence pick and a push is a strong possibility.

Dallas Cowboys 27 Washington Football Team 17

Pick against the spread: Washington +10

Confidence: None

Dallas Cowboys at New York Giants: 2021 Week 15 NFL Pick

Dallas Cowboys (9-4) at New York Giants (4-9)

The Cowboys are 9-4 and rank 5th in the NFL in point differential and they have done so despite some key absences. Starting quarterback Dak Prescott (1 game), each of their top-3 wide receivers Amari Cooper (2 games), CeeDee Lamb (1 game), and Michael Gallup (7 games), each of their top-3 offensive linemen Tyron Smith (3 games), Zack Martin (1 game), and La’El Collins (5 games), and their two best pure edge defenders DeMarcus Lawrence (10 games) and Randy Gregory (5 games) have all missed time and, in fact, last week was the Cowboys’ first game of the season where each of the aforementioned each players were all active.

Unfortunately, that did not last, as Tyron Smith left mid-game, but the Cowboys still held on to win by a touchdown over a competitive Washington team and, though Smith is out this week, it’s not bad timing for the Cowboys, as their opponents this week and dealing with a much worse situation. Already a much worse team than the Cowboys, the Giants will be very short-handed this week. The most notable absence is starting quarterback Daniel Jones, who will be replaced by Mike Glennon, who struggled mightily in relief of an injured Jones against the Cowboys earlier this year, and possibly by Jake Fromm, a signing from the Colts’ practice squad who has been with the team for two and a half weeks and has thrown zero career passes, yet reportedly might get into this game for the Giants.

However, the bigger side of concern for the Giants from an absence standpoint is their defense, which has been the more passable unit this season. Already without top linebacker Blake Martinez, top cornerback Adoree Jackson, and starting safety Jabrill Peppers, the Giants are now without their other starting safety Xavier McKinney, promising fill-in cornerback Aaron Robinson, valuable rotational edge defender Oshane Ximines, and possibly stud defensive lineman Leonard Williams, probably their best defensive player overall. In their current state, the Giants are legitimately one of the worst few teams in the league, while the Cowboys could still be considered one of the better teams, even without Smith.

This line is high at Dallas -10.5, but my calculated line currently has the Cowboys favored by 14.5 even if Leonard Williams plays and I don’t see this line getting any lower, especially since the Giants have had five COVID positives this week to just one for Dallas, meaning they are much more likely to have a bigger outbreak within the next couple days before gametime. This isn’t a big bet, but it’s one of the few I’m comfortable locking in right now, given all of the uncertainty, and it’s possible I end up increasing this play if the Giants lose Williams or others and/or we get favorable line movement.

Dallas Cowboys 30 New York Giants 13

Pick against the spread: Dallas -10.5

Confidence: Medium

Dallas Cowboys at Washington Football Team: 2021 Week 14 NFL Pick

Dallas Cowboys (8-4) at Washington Football Team (6-6)

The Cowboys have slowed down since their 6-1 start, falling to 8-4 after losing three of their last five games, but their big problem has really just been that they haven’t been healthy, most notably missing their top two edge defenders DeMarcus Lawrence and Randy Gregory and their top two wide receivers Amari Cooper and Ceedee Lamb, and all four of those players will play this week. Given that, the Cowboys are well positioned to continue their winning ways going forward.

In addition to those four players, the Cowboys also have other key players who missed time and have since returned, like right guard Zack Martin, right tackle La’El Collins, left tackle Tyron Smith, wide receiver Michael Gallup, and, of course, quarterback Dak Prescott. In fact, this game will be the first time all season that the Cowboys will have all nine of the aforementioned players available. As healthy as they’ve been all year, the Cowboys have one of the best rosters in the NFL and should be one of the top contenders going forward if they can avoid further injuries.

Washington, meanwhile, has won four straight games since a 2-6 start, but many of their wins have been close, as they have gone 5-2 in one score games and have a -51 point differential that ranks just 25th in the NFL, as opposed to a 6th rank +86 point differential for the Cowboys, despite all of their key players who have missed time. Washington has faced one of the toughest schedules in the NFL, but Dallas isn’t far behind them, having also faced a tough schedule.

My calculated line says the Cowboys should be favored by more than a touchdown in this game, so we’re getting a lot of value with them as just 4-point favorites, enough for them to be my Pick of the Week. In hindsight, I liked Minnesota on Thursday more than I like Dallas, but I didn’t want to make a Pick of the Week on Thursday before I got to review every game and, of the Sunday/Monday picks, Dallas is my favorite play.

Dallas Cowboys 31 Washington Football Team 23

Pick against the spread: Dallas -4

Confidence: Pick of the Week

Dallas Cowboys at New Orleans Saints: 2021 Week 13 NFL Pick

Dallas Cowboys (7-4) at New Orleans Saints (5-6)

Both of these two teams lost on Thanksgiving a week prior to this matchup and in both cases injuries were a big part of the reason why. The Cowboys were without their two best wide receivers Ceedee Lamb and Amari Cooper, as well as their two best pure edge defenders DeMarcus Lawrence and Randy Gregory, while talented left tackle Tyron Smith did not seem 100% in his first game back from a short absence. The Saints, meanwhile, were missing even more, as they’ve been one of the most injury plagued teams in the league this season.

Already without top wide receiver Michael Thomas for the whole season, the Saints have since seen quarterback Jameis Winston, running backs Alvin Kamala and Mark Ingram, stud offensive tackles Ryan Ramczyk and Terron Armstead, guard Andrus Peat, and edge defender Marcus Davenport suffer injuries that have kept them out for varying amounts of time, with only Ramczyk playing from that group last week. 

At least one of these teams figures to be a lot healthier this week and that team is the Dallas Cowboys. Both Cooper and Lamb are expected back and, while Randy Gregory is still at least a week away, the Cowboys should get DeMarcus Lawrence back for the first time since week one. On top of that, Tyron Smith is likely to be healthier this week than a week ago, having had another week to get better. With key players like Michael Gallup and La’El Collins also having returned from extended absences recently, the Cowboys are arguably as healthy right now as they’ve been since the beginning of the year.

On the other hand, while the Saints will get Mark Ingram back, he is the only player the Saints are guaranteed to get back this week and even Ramczyk, who played last week, is highly questionable. Neither Ramczyk nor Armstead practiced in the Saints’ final practice of the week and both are likely on the wrong side of questionable, while Kamara is also not a guarantee to return after getting limited practices in all week. All of the rest of the aforementioned injured Saints will be out at least another week and, if Ramczyk sits out, the Saints could be in even worse injury shape than they were a good ago.

With three key players like Kamara, Armstead, and Ramczyk all legitimately questionable, it’s impossible to confidently pick either side in this matchup and which side I end up going with will depend largely on who of those three end up being available. If all three play, the Saints have a good chance to keep it close or even pull an upset. The Saints are switching quarterbacks from Trevor Siemian to Taysom Hill, which should be an upgrade by default, as Hill can at least be a threat with his legs. 

If the Saints offensive linemen and top running back are available, they can utilize a run heavy, ball control offensive game plan, which, when combined with their talented defense, could allow them to pull the upset or at least keep this close. The Saints are also in a good spot in their second straight game as home underdogs, as teams tend to be much better in their second game after being uncompetitive in the first game, with teams covering at a 59.0% rate all-time as home underdogs after a loss by 14+ points as home underdogs the previous week. On top of that, the Saints could benefit from the Cowboys being without several coaches in the COVID protocol, although we’ve seen that have minimal if any impact in the past in many cases.

On the other hand, if the Saints don’t get their running back and offensive tackles back, it’s hard to see them having enough to be competitive with a suddenly healthy Cowboys team that has one of the most talented rosters in the NFL. Since it’s looking like Armstead and Ramczyk are both on the right side of questionable, I am making Dallas my pick for now, but it’s a no confidence pick until I know who is actually playing. I will almost definitely have an update before gametime. 

Update: Kamara, Ramczyk, and Armstead are all out for the Saints, while the Cowboys are healthy as expected, but we won’t be able to take advantage of the Cowboys’ significant health edge, with this line moving up to -6.5. My calculated line has the Cowboys favored by a touchdown, but when you factor in that the Saints are in a better spot, there really isn’t anything to be confident about the Cowboys with this week. I’m still taking them for pick ’em purposes because I think the most likely outcome is they win by a touchdown, but this is one of my lowest confidence picks of the week.

Dallas Cowboys 24 New Orleans Saints 17

Pick against the spread: Dallas -6.5

Confidence: None

Las Vegas Raiders at Dallas Cowboys: 2021 Week 12 NFL Pick

Las Vegas Raiders (5-5) at Dallas Cowboys (7-3)

In non-divisional Thursday games like this, typically a home favorite is at a significant advantage. It’s very tough for an inferior team to go on the road on a short week and play a superior team that is not in their division that they don’t have familiarity with and, as a result, non-divisional road underdogs cover at a 65.0% rate on Thursday when both teams are on short rest. That would seem to favor the Cowboys, who are 7.5-point home favorites over the Raiders, but that line is too high, so I can’t bet them confidently. 

This line was just a touchdown a week ago, which is a bigger shift than you might think, as about 1 in 10 games are decided by exactly seven points. That’s despite the fact that the Cowboys lost and failed to cover against the Chiefs. The Cowboys are healthier than they were a week ago, with left tackle Tyron Smith set to return from a 2-game absence and CeeDee Lamb, who missed most of the loss to the Chiefs, likely to join him, but Lamb was expected to be healthy a week ago and this line movement seems to mostly be the result of the Raiders’ big home loss to the Bengals last week.

That result did not look good for the Raiders on the scoreboard, as they lost at home by 19, but they actually won the yards per play battle by 1.8 yards per play. The final score was largely the result of the Raiders losing the turnover battle and converting just 1 of 7 third downs, but third down conversion rates and turnover margins tend to be highly inconsistent and non-predictive on a week-to-week basis, especially compared to things like yards per play and first down rate. 

The Raiders have a negative point differential (-39) on the season at 5-5, but they have a much bigger than average disparity between their 1st/2nd and 3rd/4th down performance on both sides of the ball, which should even out in the long run. In terms of overall efficiency (based on yards per play and first down rate), the Raiders rank 19th, 7th, and 25th on offense, defense, and special teams respectively. The Cowboys, meanwhile, rank 3rd, 18th, and 21st. 

The Cowboys’ offense is mostly healthy, but their defense is worse than that suggests right now, with their two best edge defenders, DeMarcus Lawrence and Randy Gregory, both out with injuries, a big absence. Given that, they don’t deserve to be more than touchdown favorites against a decent at worst Raiders team. My calculated line has the Cowboys favored by 5.5 and, while that doesn’t take into account that the Cowboys are in a great spot, I have a hard time justifying this line. The Raiders aren’t worth betting on either, but they should be the better side in this one from a spread perspective.

Update: CeeDee Lamb will apparently not be playing, as, even though he participated in the walk through yesterday, he will not have enough time to clear the concussion protocol on a short week. I want to bump this confidence up to low confidence before the line moves off 7.5. Having Tyron Smith back healthy will help, but the Cowboys will be without their two top wide receivers in this game, which will obviously effect their offense in a negative way.

Dallas Cowboys 30 Las Vegas Raiders 24

Pick against the spread: Las Vegas +7.5

Confidence: Low

Dallas Cowboys at Kansas City Chiefs: 2021 Week 11 NFL Pick

Dallas Cowboys (7-2) at Kansas City Chiefs (6-4)

The Chiefs got a huge win in Las Vegas last week, winning by a final score of 41-14 against a decent Raiders team. They have always seemed like they were going to break through at some point, but their offense had been uncharacteristically struggling across the Chiefs previous three games, a stretch in which the Chiefs scored just 36 points. That same stretch saw them have significant improvement on defense though, as they finally had top edge defender Frank Clark, top safety Tyrann Mathieu, top interior defender Chris Jones, and starting cornerback Charvarius Ward healthy at the same time for the first time all season and gave up just 51 points across three games.

Even with the Chiefs’ recent offensive struggles, they still ranked among the league’s best in schedule adjusted offensive efficiency going into last week, so if their offense bounced back as expected, paired with a much healthier and improved defense, the Chiefs were going to be a dangerous team. That seems to have happened. The Chiefs still rank just 30th in schedule adjusted defensive efficiency, but they should be significantly better than that defensively going forward, while their offense and special teams rank 2nd and 1st respectively in schedule adjusted efficiency. 

Aside from injuries, the Chiefs’ biggest problem thus far has been the turnover margin, as they rank third worst in the league in turnover margin at -8. Turnover margin is not a predictive stat on a week-to-week basis though and, though I would expect any team in the Chiefs’ turnover margin situation to bounce back going forward, the Chiefs are even better equipped than most teams to bounce back, as having an elite quarterback like Patrick Mahomes is the best way to consistently perform well in the turnover margin. Prior to this season, the Chiefs were +23 in turnover margin across Mahomes’ first three seasons in the league combined and it wouldn’t be a surprise at all to see their turnover situation swing dramatically over the remainder of the season.

Now the biggest problem for the Chiefs is they have another tough game this week, despite having one of the toughest schedules in the league thus far, as they play host to the 7-2 Dallas Cowboys. The Chiefs actually probably have the better defense in this matchup, with the Cowboys ranking 24th in schedule adjusted defensive efficiency and missing their two best edge defenders DeMarcus Lawrence and Randy Gregory due to injuries, but the Cowboys are also the only team who ranks higher than the Chiefs in schedule adjusted offensive efficiency.

The Cowboys are also healthier than they have been on offense for most of the season, with their two stud tackles Tyron Smith and La’El Collins set to play with quarterback Dak Prescott in the same game for the the first time week one, as well as the return of starting wide receiver Michael Gallup for the first time since week one, to offset some of the absence of fellow starting wide receiver Amari Cooper, who is on the COVID list and will miss his first game of the season. The Chiefs, meanwhile, are missing starting right tackle Lucas Niang and will likely be without starting running back Clyde Edwards-Helaire again as well. 

Overall, I have these two teams about even, so we aren’t getting any value with either side, with the Chiefs favored by 2.5 points at home. The most likely outcome of two evenly matched teams like this facing off against each other is the home team winning by a field goal, so I am taking the Chiefs for pick ‘em purposes, but this line is right about where it should be and there are no situational edges for either team, so there is nothing worth betting on here.

Update: Tyron Smith will be out for the Cowboys and yet this line has stayed put at 2.5. I am going to up the confidence here a little bit.

Kansas City Chiefs 31 Dallas Cowboys 27

Pick against the spread: Kansas City -2.5

Confidence: Low

Atlanta Falcons at Dallas Cowboys: 2021 Week 10 NFL Pick

Atlanta Falcons (4-4) at Dallas Cowboys (6-2)

The Cowboys shockingly lost at home to the Broncos last week, in Dak Prescott’s return, a week after they went into Minnesota and beat a quality team with an inexperienced backup quarterback under center. I wouldn’t put too much stock in that one loss though, as the Cowboys were likely just flat after a big effort with a backup quarterback under center the week before. Even with Prescott missing a game and the Cowboys struggling in his first game back, Dallas still ranks 1st in offensive efficiency on the season.

I wish Dallas’ loss had triggered a bigger line movement though, especially with the Falcons winning in upset fashion in New Orleans, but this line only moved from Dallas -9.5 on the early line to Dallas -8.5 this week. The Cowboys also lost talented edge defender Randy Gregory to injury in the past week, which is another reason this line could have shifted. However, we are actually still getting some line value with the Cowboys, even without Gregory, as I have them calculated as 11-point favorites over a Falcons team that only has a 4-4 record because of a very easy schedule.

The Falcons’ win against the Saints last week was just their second game of the season against a team with a winning record and they were only able to beat the Saints in a close game because the Saints were starting a backup quarterback and were likely flat after a big upset win over the Buccaneers the week before. The Falcons’ other wins have come against the Giants, Dolphins, and Jets, three of the worst teams in the league, and their margin of victory is just a combined 14 points across their four wins, with their four losses coming by a combined 59 points, giving them the 8th worst point differential in the league, despite a weak schedule. 

Unless Dallas is flat again, the Falcons should have a hard time keeping up and, if either of these teams are flat this week, I would expect it to be the Falcons, who are coming off of that big win over the Saints last week, pulling the upset as touchdown underdogs. Teams cover at just a 43.1% rate all-time after a win as underdogs of a touchdown or more against a divisional opponent. I wish we were getting a little bit better of a line, but I don’t expect this game to be close, so the Cowboys are worth a bet this week.

Dallas Cowboys 37 Atlanta Falcons 24

Pick against the spread: Dallas -8.5

Confidence: Medium