After an embarrassing season-opening defeat to the Tampa Bay Buccaneers, the Cowboys, led by Cooper Rush due to Dak Prescott’s injury, bounced back with a surprising win against the Bengals. The Giants on the other hand have jumped out to a stunning 2-0 start, after tight wins over the Titans and Panthers. Let’s take a look at the odds as this classic rivalry takes center stage on Monday Night, and make some betting picks.
Cowboys Vs. Giants Betting Odds
This truly is one of the toughest games to predict thus far, and the odds reflect that as the Giants are just one-point home favorites. The total is set at an understandably low 39, given the Cooper Rush situation, as well as the general state of New York Giants offense.
Cowboys Vs. Giants Prediction
Perhaps the biggest early surprise of this NFL season is the 2-0 New York Giants. Granted, they haven’t done it against veritable contenders, but it’s impressive and shocking nonetheless. Interestingly enough, as we’ll discuss in more detail in the key matchups segments, the advanced metrics don’t love the G-men, and neither does the eye test. For instance, Daniel Jones’s play speed is rather alarming for a fourth-year starter in the NFL, and this among other issues has hampered the offense’s ability to be explosive and opportunistic. The defense will likely be missing Leonard Williams this week, but that loss could be mitigated by the potential NFL debut of dynamic edge rusher Kayvon Thibodeaux.
Dallas, on the other hand, were upsettingly bad on offense in week 1, and then knocked off the defending AFC champs with Dak sidelined. Make no mistake, they’re no juggernaut, but this game is far from the layup that some Giants fans and pundits are making it out to be. The Cowboys defense is led by Micah Parsons, perhaps the best all around defensive player in the league, and between the likes of Dante Fowler Jr, Leighton Vander Esch, and Demarcus Lawrence, there’s plenty of talent to go around at all levels of the field. And of course, rivalries like this one are always hard-fought.
Between the absence of Prescott and other injuries to the Dallas offense, the relatively solid play of the Giants defense, and the dominance of Parsons and friends, I really like the under in this game. I also like the Cowboys to pull this one out; they have more talent than the Giants on both sides of the ball, they had a gutsy win against Cincy last weekend, and the Giants have been winning, but living on razor-thin margins, I don’t see that continuing consistently this year.
- Since taking over as the Giants’ full time starter, Daniel Jones is 1-4 overall against the Cowboys. I’m not sure I see him bucking the trend and pushing this year’s Giants team to 3-0.
- All four games played by these two teams so far have gone under the points total. Between Dallas’s stout defense, ranked 8th in the league by PFF, and their depleted offense, this game is pretty likely to continue that trend.
- 61% of public bets and 69% of public money are on the Cowboys
Away team Injuries: Dak Prescott (O), Tyron Smith (O), Dalton Schultz (Q), Michael Gallup (Q)
Home Team Injuries: Kayvon Thibodeaux (Q), Kadarius Toney (Q), Leonard Williams (Q)
Cowboys Vs. Giants Key Matchups
Check out the key matchups and mismatches for Cowboys vs. Giants below.
Cowboys front seven vs. Giants Run Game
Parsons has picked up where he left off with his Defensive Rookie- and nearly Player- of the Year campaign, racking up two sacks in each of the first two games for a league-leading total of four. It’s early of course, but he’s starting the year off as dominant as ever, generating pressure from all area across the line of scrimmage. Led by, but not solely because of Parsons, the Cowboys are the best-tackling team of this young season, according to PFF.
Saquon Barkley is healthy, explosive, and productive again- it’s a great sight to see, one we didn’t know for sure we’d ever see again. If the Giants are going to beat their eternal rivals and move to 3-0, it’s very likely going to involve a big game from him. But, as seems to always be the case, he’s running behind a terrible Giants offensive line, which PFF considers to be the very worst run-blocking unit in the game. If they’re not able to help Barkley at all against the tough Dallas front seven, it’ll severely limit his production, and make the Giants offense one-dimensional, which is never good but especially troubling when that one dimension is Daniel Jones. That’s not a recipe for success, and the Giants will have to avoid it if they want to stay competitive in this one.
Cowboys Air Game vs. Giants Pass Defense
According to PFF, the Giants defense thus far has been problematic both in coverage and in creating pressure on opposing passers, ranking outside of the top 20 in both grades. Taking advantage of what should be a better pass rushing performance against the worst Cowboys line in years, and stifling Cooper Rush, is a realistic path to victory for the Giants this week, but the secondary will need to do their part. They’ll need a strong effort from Adoree’ Jackson, who is off to a nice start in his second season in New York. He’s allowed just 1 completion so far on 7 targets, holding opposing passers to a rating of 43 when targeted.
Jackson and co. will be tasked with limiting a Dallas receiving corps still reeling from the loss of Amari Cooper, who is off to a strong start with the Browns this season. Noah Brown has been a nice surprise, earning a PFF receiving grade of 78.2 while racking up 150 yards over the first two games, as well as snaring the team’s only touchdown through the air thus far. Presumptive WR1 CeeDee Lamb has just about 100 yards so far as he deals with increased defensive attention, and has struggled to a catch rate below 50%. The Cowboys will need more from Lamb, and continued performance from Brown, to earn the road victory this week.