A lot is on the line in the final week of the regular season for the Dallas Cowboys as they head to Washington to take on the Commanders. The result of this game will affect the NFC playoff picture, and we’ll break it down before going over which betting angle I’ll be taking.
After starting Carson Wentz last weekend and officially removing themselves from the playoff picture, the Washington Commanders will turn to their third starting quarterback of the season, as Sam Howell will be under center for his first career start. The rookie will take over an offense that only scored ten points last weekend against the Browns.
Washington has had sporadic offensive success but was in a grove with Taylor Heinicke at quarterback. On the season, the Commanders are ranked 25th in the league in average points per game and have relied more on their run game to carry the offense. Even though they average the eighth most rushing attempts per game, the Commanders have only averaged 124.5 rushing yards a game and rank 29th in average rushing touchdowns per game.
Defensively the Commanders are ranked fourth in the league in yards allowed per game and one of the best teams in the league in getting off the field on third down. Over the last two games, they have allowed 61 combined points, though, and will now be facing a Cowboys offense that has been on a scoring tear for most of the season.
Dallas has the number two-scoring offense in the league, and, despite needing a lot to happen, they still can clinch the one seed or, at the very least, win the NFC East. The Cowboys have scored 27 or more points every week since eight and have been led by the dynamic running back duo of Ezekiel Elliot and Tony Pollard.
Pollard and Elliot have helped the Cowboys rank fifth in the league in average rushing yards per game and second in rushing touchdowns per game. Washington has done an excellent job of limiting touchdowns on the ground allowing an average of less than one a game.
At the time of writing this, the point total for this game can currently be found at 40.5 points. My best bet will be taking the over and looking for the Cowboys to continue their high-level scoring pace. The over is 8-7-1 in Cowboys games this season, and up until last weekend, they had five straight games hit the over.
Dallas has had a lot of success against divisional opponents, with a 4-1 divisional record and an over record of 5-1-1 in their last seven games against divisional opponents. With Washington having no motivation on defense for this game, the Cowboys should be able to find success through the air and on the ground.
As for the Commanders’ offense, their heavy rushing attack should play to their advantage this weekend against a Cowboys defense that is 21st in the league in average rushing yards allowed per week. It’s hard to predict how Sam Howell will play in his first regular-season NFL game, but the Commanders have the offensive weapons to make things easier for him. This total is well within reach and is the best way to profit off this game.