The Patriots opened as 7.5-point favorites as they prepare to host the Cowboys in Week 6.
If you’re a fan of good defensive football, you may want to shield your eyes from this one. It has all of the makings of a shootout. Both teams have above average quarterbacks and offensive lines. The Pats rank last against the pass, and Dallas has one of the league’s best WR duos in Miles Austin and Dez Bryant. The Cowboys have given up the fewest yards on the ground of any team through five weeks, but that is partly a function of playing several teams who can’t run the ball. Their secondary is mediocre at best, but their stats are propped up by an excellent pass rush. Don’t just bring your popcorn for this one; you’ll need a respirator and a defibrillator handy.
This could easily be a trap game for the Pats. New England is coming off an emotional win against a hated division rival, while the Cowboys are coming off a bye following a huge blown lead against the Lions. Dallas can stop the run and also has an excellent pass rush that could cause New England’s high-powered offense fits. The Cowboys also have more offensive weapons than any team New England has faced this year.
The Cowboys should be able to keep this one close and could even score an upset win. I’ll take the Cowboys against the spread and the over (54.5).
Other lines I like this week
Jets (-9) vs. Dolphins
Miami has the advantage of coming off a bye, but it’s hard to imagine Matt Moore doing much against a talented New York secondary. The Dolphins offense is going to be very one-dimensional due to QB issues, and the Jets D should be good enough to shut down a one-dimensional offense. Miami is 0-4 against the spread this year, and things probably won’t get better this week.
Colts (+7) @ Bengals
Nobody will mistake Curtis Painter for Peyton Manning, but the former clipboard holder has posted two straight solid outings with 4 TDs and only one turnover. Both of these teams have played several close games this year, so getting a TD here seems generous.
Panthers (+4) @ Falcons
The Panthers have been one of the league’s best teams against the spread this year (I know this well because I’ve picked against them twice and been burned both times). The Falcons defense has been one of the league’s worst against the pass, so I can’t see them keeping Cam Newton under wraps. The Panthers could win this game straight up, so they present a good value at +4.