If recent history serves as any indication of what we’re going to see on Sunday night when the Eagles and Cowboys link up with first-place in the NFC East on the line, then we should be in for quite a treat. Three of the last four contests played between these two teams at AT&T Stadium have gone to overtime, and oddsmakers at PA online sportsbooks have responded accordingly with a short spread.
The money is coming in on hard on the underdog Eagles, but is backing the Birds the right play? Let’s break it all down with a look with a look at the current Eagles-Cowboys line, matchups, and trends before getting to the pick.
Note: Be sure to check our extensive rundown on betting the Eagles-Cowboys betting total.
Eagles vs. Cowboys Odds
|Eagles||+2.5 (-110)||+115||O 48.5 (-110)|
|Cowboys||-2.5 (-110)||-133||U 48.5 (-105)|
|Eagles||+2.5 (-103)||+130||O 49 (-110)|
|Cowboys||-2.5 (-120)||-148||U 49 (-110)|
|Eagles||+2.5 (-110)||+124||O 48.5 (-105)|
|Cowboys||-2.5 (-110)||-142||U 48.5 (-115)|
Analysis: Money has been coming in hard all week on Philadelphia with bettors pounding the Eagles. As of Friday at 12:00 p.m., 68% of spread bets and 86% of the spread handle is on the Eagles across legal reporting sportsbooks. This explains why the spread has moved down to Dallas -2.5 after opening at -3.
For what it’s worth, when a favorite moves from -3 to -2.5 or -2, such teams are 39-38 ATS overall, but they’re only 4-8 ATS when this happens in primetime dating back to the 2003 season.
PointsBet Head of Content Matt Chaprales passes along the following:
“So far it’s been a cascade of Eagles money — over 75% of the tickets and 90% of the money — which is a bit surprising given the Cowboys’ status as one of the most public teams out there. Clearly the market has backed off the Boys a bit; a three-game skid punctuated by a loss to the Jets will have that effect, especially in this neck of the woods. We opened the game Dallas -3 and haven’t budged despite all the Eagles action — we’re always hesitant to move a number off 3 due to the potential of getting middled. That said, this number does look to be trending toward 2.5. Pretty much a certainty if the action remains so one-sided heading into Sunday.”
If you’re someone who likes to fade the public, take the Cowboys.
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The Cowboys hold a 68-52 advantage in the all-time series, but the Eagles have a 21-17 the edge since the turn of the century.
Quite a few memories have been made in that time by the Eagles. Some good:
— Dov Kleiman (@NFL_DovKleiman) July 11, 2019
And some not so good:
— NFL (@NFL) July 15, 2019
Anyway, the Cowboys have a slight 10-8 edge since Jason Garrett took over the head job midway through the 2010 season, but the Eagles are 6-3 straight up in nine head-to-head meetings on the road. The Eagles have outscored Dallas in those nine games by a 256-198 margin, an average of 6.44 points per game.
One cause for concern for those backing the Eagles is that Philadelphia is only 4-11 straight up against Dallas as an underdog dating back to the 2003 season and only 1-6 straight up as an underdog since Jason Garrett took over.
Still, Dallas has never won or covered in back-to-back seasons at home against the Eagles since Garrett was named head coach, something they will need to do for the first time if they plan to take over sole possession of first-place in the NFC East.
As for the two quarterbacks in this one, Dak Prescott holds a 4-2 record against the Eagles, including a 3-2 advantage head-to-head against Carson Wentz (one of those losses was a meaningless 2016 Week 17 game).
In six starts against the Eagles, Prescott has completed 63.6% of his passes, averaging 228 yards per game. He’s thrown seven touchdowns against six interceptions.
Wentz, meanwhile, has posted sterling numbers against Dallas despite a sub-.500 record. In five career starts against the Cowboys, Wentz has completed 67.2% of his passes, averaging 240.6 yards per game to go along with 10 touchdown passes and 0 picks. That’s good for a 100.0 passer rating.
Eagles vs. Cowboys Injuries
Both teams are banged up coming into this one, but several key injured Cowboys players appear in line to play on Sunday night:
All injured Cowboys, save for Anthony Brown, are expected to practice today and play against the Eagles, barring a setback, per sources
— Clarence Hill Jr (@clarencehilljr) October 18, 2019
The Eagles will once again be without top-playmaker DeSean Jackson, while the Cowboys are dealing with injuries to top corners Byron Jones and Anthony Brown.
Can someone, I mean anyone, finally make a play for quarterback Carson Wentz? If Jones and/or Brown are out, perhaps this will be the week the Eagles’ try to push the ball down the field to aid a league-average rushing offense that is producing just 111.2 yards per game and just 4.0 yards per attempt.
If Dallas has its full complement of players available, things will be much harder for an inconsistent Eagles aerial attack against the league’s No. 13 passing defense (238 yards per game) that has allowed only five touchdowns through the air. Only New England has allowed fewer passing touchdowns (one) among teams that have played six games.
On the other side of the ball, the Eagles may get a much needed boost in the secondary with the possible returns of corners Ronald Darby and Jalen Mills. At the very least, it appears Mills will play:
#Eagles CB Jalen Mills said that he’s going to start Sunday at the a Cowboys.
— Jeff McLane (@Jeff_McLane) October 18, 2019
Pederson wouldn’t fully commit to the status of either player during his Friday press conference, but there should be some urgency to aid a Philly pass defense that has surrendered 280 yards and more than two passing touchdowns per game.
Things could be a bit easier for the Eagles’ beleaguered defense if the Cowboys are once again without starting tackles Tyron Smith and La’el Collins. Dallas could also be without wide receiver Amari Cooper (quad), who put up three touchdowns and 217 yards against the Eagles last December.
Eagles vs. Cowboys Betting Trends
The betting trends shine very favorably upon the Eagles this week.
The Jason Garrett Factor
There are some flat-out UGLY Jason Garrett trends out there this week. Consider the following:
- The Cowboys are 4-14-1 ATS as a home favorite after a loss under Garrett and 1-7-1 ATS in this spot since the start of the 2014 season.
- The Cowboys are 2-10 ATS and 3-9 straight up as a home favorite of three points or less under Garrett.
- The Cowboys are 9-19-2 ATS overall when favored by three points or less in any situation and 3-6 ATS against division opponents under Garrett.
- The only previous occasion in which Dallas was favored by three points or less at home over the Eagles came back on Thanksgiving Day in 2014. The Eagles routed Dallas by a 33-10 final.
Two Other Trends Favoring Philly
Road underdogs of three points or less in division road games that are coming off a loss are 59-39-7 ATS.
Home favorites of three points or less that are coming off a loss when favored by five points or more are a woeful 0-6-1 ATS.
Eagles vs. Cowboys Prediction
After a perfect 3-0 start, it’s hard to imagine the Cowboys dropping a fourth-straight game, but I think that’s exactly what is going to happen on Sunday night. Dallas has been beyond awful as a short favorite at home, and you have to wonder about the effectiveness of their key starters returning from injury. Underdogs are 56-35-1 ATS and 11-8 ATS in primetime this season. I expect that the Eagles will keep that trend going with a cover (and win) on Sunday night.
The Pick: Eagles (+3) over Cowboys