Ordinarily an over in the 50’s is not a red light, but it’s definitely a yellow light. This week, the Eagles/Cowboys over/under is 51.5. Even if you didn’t ace the math SAT, you can probably figure out that this total tacitly requires both teams to score at least 20 points (hopefully a lot more) to hit the over. If one of these teams lays an egg and posts, say, 17 points, the other one has to get to 35 or more. That’s not such a common thing.
And yet…fear not. This game is going over. And if you bet it with our partners at Unibet PA, you can get exclusive +200 odds on OVER 51.5 points by clicking right here and using promo code DOUBLEBOOST.
The Dallas Cowboys were the 28th ranked defense in points yielded last year. It was on merit, too – the Cowboys were 23rd in the NFL in yards conceded. The Cowboys played a bunch of track meets last season. They gave up 30 or more points in exactly half of their games. Twice, they gave up more than 40.
We turn now to the Philadelphia Eagles. Compared to the Cowboys, the Eagles were better defensively, but ranking 20th in points against and 19th in yards conceded isn’t exactly the 2000 Baltimore Ravens from a defensive standpoint. It’s true that the Eagles have held opponents to only 23 points through two games. It’s also true that the Week 1 defensive performance came against a thoroughly washed Matt Ryan and the hapless Atlanta Falcons. Last week, the Eagles held the San Francisco 49ers to 17 points, but it was the Eagles’ home opener and the 49ers were down to one healthy running back by the time the game was over. All results matter, but some matter less than others.
This is the Cowboys’ home opener. In their 2020 home opener, they beat the Falcons 40-39. Cowboys’ quarterback Dak Prescott certainly seems to have recovered from last season’s horrific injury. Prescott has completed 65 of 85 passes through two games, one of which came against the defending Super Bowl champion Tampa Bay Buccaneers.
The only potential stumbling block for this over is, not to put too fine a point on it, Eagles’ quarterback Jalen Hurts. To be fair, if it goes badly this week, it certainly won’t be all his fault. The loss of starting right guard Brandon Brooks is troublesome, although given Brooks’ unfortunate injury history it cannot be considered a shock.
— Mike Garafolo (@MikeGarafolo) September 24, 2021
The real problem this week figures to be the absence of former rugger, now multi-millionaire left tackle Jordan Mailata. The man mountain who single-handedly absolved the Eagles of the apparent mess that was picking Andre Dillard in the first round has a knee injury that isn’t currently threatening his season but has him out this week. Hurts is likely to spend a lot of this game, especially in passing downs, running for his life.
Then again, Hurts ran for his life for much of the end of last season after he took the reins from Carson Wentz (remember him?) and the Eagles still managed to score 24 or more in two of the three games where Hurts started and his team was trying to win.
Hurts and Eagles’ running back Miles Sanders will do just enough on screens, draws, runs to the right and broken plays to score more than 20. And Prescott will benefit from what project to be some short fields and some chunk plays from CeeDee Lamb, Ezekiel Elliott and the suddenly explosive Tony Pollard. One way or another, these teams will aggregate at least 52 points. It’s sort of hard to see how they won’t.
THE PICK: OVER 51.5 (Cowboys 31, Eagles 22)