Monday Night Football gives us a match-up between two NFC East rivals that don’t like each other very much. The Cowboys are clearly the better team, but that doesn’t assure Jason Garrett’s squad of a victory when they travel to New York this week.
Oddsmakers clearly believe the talent gap is too much for the Giants to overcome. That’s why the Cowboys have been installed as 7-point favorites. That’s particularly interesting when you consider the reality that New York likely got three points of credit for being the home team.
This game is going to generate a lot of national buzz, which should also make it one of the more heavily wagered games of the weekend. If you want to beat the public, you need to check out all of the information our exclusive StatsChecker Site has to offer. We’ll give you five examples of the info it provides here, but not checking it out for yourself is the equivalent of betting malpractice.
- The Cowboys have owned the Giants recently
Five consecutive wins is a lot for a division rivalry. That’s exactly how many times Dallas has bested New York in this series. The Giants will be desperate to turn things around on Monday night, but the Cowboys need to win this game to keep their playoff train rolling in the right direction.
The maturity of Garrett’s roster should play a big part in this game. Dak Prescott and Ezekiel Elliott are used to the bright lights that come along with this matchup. It’s unclear if guys like Daniel Jones and Saquon Barkley can handle the moment. That should give you pause before backing the Giants.
- Evan Engram is a great DFS play
The Giants’ talented tight end has found the end zone in each of his team’s last three games against the Cowboys. Predictably, the safety spot is a weakness in the Dallas defense. Engram’s ability to work the seam could really produce some big plays in this matchup.
Clearly, that makes Engram an obvious play in all fantasy formats. We also like him in your DFS lineups as well. He’s not going to come cheap in that format, but he could pay off in a big way.
- The Giants defense is just not good
New York’s offense is fueled by young talent and is generally pretty fun to watch. The same can’t be said on the other side of the ball for this team. The Giants defense is just flat out bad.
That’s why they’re being lit up to the tune of 27.3 points per game this season. If they give up that total to the Cowboys they’re going to take an ugly loss at home. If the Giants have any chance of pulling off the upset, their defense will need to force turnovers to keep Dallas’ offense off the field entirely.
- Zeke likes to eat at night
Elliott is one of the most dynamic offensive weapons in the NFL, but he’s particularly dangerous when he plays at night. He has scored at least one touchdown in his last six games under the lights.
That’s clearly troubling news for a Giants defense that’s struggled to stop anyone this season. Don’t be surprised if Dallas makes a concerted effort to get Elliott the ball out on the edge on Monday night. Some quick passes on the perimeter could yield big plays for the Cowboys.
- Home field hasn’t helped the G-Men
The Giants are hoping they can benefit from a big crowd on Monday Night, but the harsh truth is that New York is just 1-3 at home this season. We mentioned in the open that the spread should incorporate three points for the Giants home field advantage, but it’s very possible that overestimates what oddsmakers are actually giving them.
In other words, you should bet this game more like its being played on a neutral field. The Cowboys aren’t going to suffer from any sort of disadvantage on the road. That makes the seven point spread a lot more interesting.
If you have to bet this game, take the Giants to cover
This game has a lot of potential pitfalls due to the familiarity of the two opponents. However, if you have to bet it, go with the plucky Giants to secure a back door cover. The Cowboys defense gets a lot of attention for its star power, but New York has enough talent at the skill positions to hurt them.
The big question here is whether or not you can trust Jones to protect the football. If he does, the Giants can put up enough points to make this game interesting. I don’t like their chances to win, or even keep it close, but seeing Jones throw a meaningless touchdown pass in the final two minutes to cut the lead to six feels like the way to bet this game.