Dallas Cowboys vs. New York Giants
Line: Dallas -9
Where: AT&T Stadium, Arlington, Texas
When: Thursday, 11/24 at 4:30 p.m. ET
Sole possession of second place in the NFC East will be on the line when the Cowboys host the Giants on Thursday afternoon in a Thanksgiving matchup.
Dallas is coming off possibly the most impressive performance of any team in the NFL this season, cruising to a 40-3 win over Minnesota on Sunday. New York is looking to bounce back after suffering its second loss in three games, falling 31-18 a home to Detroit in Week 11. Dallas picked up a 23-16 road victory when these teams met at the end of September.
Caesars Sportsbook opened Dallas as a 6.5-point favorite, but bettors quickly drove that number up to -9 as of Monday night. Thursday’s total opened at 43 and has been bet up slightly to 44.5 points.
The Cowboys were 1-point road underdogs in their 23-16 win in September, implying that the line would have been around -5 if the venues had been flipped. That game barely went ‘over’ the total of 38.5, but the spread and total have both been bumped up multiple points due to Dallas quarterback Dak Prescott missing that game.
Prescott led the Cowboys to their blowout win on Sunday, completing 22 of 25 passes for 276 yards and two touchdowns. Running back Tony Pollard had a huge day, rushing for 80 yards while catching six passes for 109 yards and both of Prescott’s scoring strikes. Ezekiel Elliott averaged just 2.8 yards per carry, but he scored two touchdowns in the win.
“We kind of found our formula, just running the ball, pounding the defense, dominating on all phases of the game,” Pollard said.
The Cowboys rank No. 14 in the NFL offensively, averaging 345.6 yards per game. Prescott has completed 67.8% of his passes for 1,132 yards, eight touchdowns and four interceptions this season, getting sacked just seven times in 152 passes. Pollard leads the rushing attack with 118 carries for 701 yards, averaging 5.9 yards per touch.
Wide receiver CeeDee Lamb has been the top target in the passing game, catching 58 passes for 751 yards and five scores. Wideout Noah Brown has 384 receiving yards, while tight end Dalton Schultz has 279 yards. They are facing a New York defense that is No. 17, allowing 347.7 yards per game.
The Giants are not coming off their best outing, allowing 160 rushing yards in a 31-18 loss to Detroit on Sunday. Quarterback Daniel Jones completed just 27 of 44 passes and threw two interceptions, while running back Saquon Barkley had his worst game of the season with 15 carries for 22 yards.
Barkley has been in the MVP discussion at the halfway point of the season after rushing for more than 900 yards through his first nine games of the year, but he could not get anything going against the Lions. Jones also struggled, as he had not thrown an interception since the first game against Dallas.
“I think we’re all pretty disappointed with our performance,” Jones said. “And we’re not up to our standard to, you know, what we’re capable of doing.”
He has completed 65.1% of his passes for 1,937 yards, nine touchdowns and four interceptions this season. His top target has been wide receiver Darius Slayton, who has 24 receptions for 413 yards and two touchdowns.
Dallas has won 10 of the last 11 matchups between these teams and has covered in nine of those games. The Giants are 5-2 ATS in their last seven games, while Dallas is 7-2 ATS in its last nine games. Dallas has gone ‘under’ in 13 of its last 20 contests, but the ‘over’ has cashed in six of the last eight head-to-head meetings.
The ‘under’ had cashed in four straight games for the G-Men until Sunday’s 49 combined points went ‘over’ the 44.5-point tally.
The pick: New York +9
The early support for Dallas cannot be considered surprising after the clinic that Dallas put on against Minnesota on Sunday. This line has seen too much movement though, even with the trajectories of these teams over the past few weeks. Dallas is coming off back-to-back road games and is on a short week, making this a tough scheduling spot as the miles start to pile up. New York is in a revenge spot and has a strong enough rushing attack to control the tempo and keep the ball away from the Cowboys’ explosive offense. I’ll fade the early money and trends favoring Dallas, as I am expecting some regression against a motivated New York team.