There is a little desperation here as both teams lost their opening games, the Falcons at home. The NFL is going to put in one more team in each conference into the playoffs this season, but starting 0-2 is still a really tough hole to dig out of. If Dallas starts 0-2 the pressure will be even greater, but they have a new coach but transitioning is tough under the current circumstances. None of the other new coaches is getting much done.
Both of these teams expect to be competing for the playoffs thanks to their flashy offenses. Matt Ryan and Dak Prescott are two of the more established quarterbacks in the league. Ryan took the team to the Super Bowl a few years ago, but playoff success has eluded Prescott thus far. Both of these guys need a win.
Atlanta Falcons Quick Notes
- The Falcons had 135 more yards of offense than Seattle last week but were barely in the game
- Receivers Calvin Ridley and Julio Jones both had 130+ yards receiving.
- Atlanta sacked the elusive Russell Wilson three times last week. That is a good indicator.
Atlanta Falcons Injuries
WR Russell Gage – Probable – He had 9 grabs for over 100 yards last week.
WR Julio Jones – Probable – Lots of yards last week but no scores.
LT Jake Matthews – Questionable – Protects Matt Ryan’s blindside.
Dallas Cowboys Quick Notes
- Even though the offensive line took some injuries this offseason the Cowboys had no trouble running the ball last week, 136 yards on the ground.
- Rookie WR CeeDee Lamb had the biggest play of the game for Dallas, a 33 yard reception.
- Cowboys got killed on time of possession in the recent loss, only 24 minutes.
Dallas Cowboys Injuries
WR Amari Cooper – Questionable – The team’s top receiver.
LT Tyron Smith – Questionable – They can’t afford to lose another lineman.
LB Leighton Vander Esch – Out – Loss is big but will be felt more against stronger running teams.
Atlanta Falcons vs. Dallas Cowboys Betting Analysis
ATS: Cowboys -4.5
This line has moved a lot, dropping from -7.5. That is a pass through a key number so the action must be significant as many are concerned about whether Dallas will be able to do what they want with an offensive line that is not as strong on the edge or at center as it was a year ago. RB Ezekiel Elliott and the running game is what sets this team up. Even with the massive shift in the betting line I am still on the side of fading the Cowboys in this one. Sure the offense takes a major hit but at the same time I am not sure the defense is ready to thwart an Atlanta passing attack that is clicking to start the season. Matt Ryan and Julio Jones have had it going for a while, but now Calvin Ridley is just as dangerous and even Gage had a monster game against Seattle last week in the loss. I think Atlanta’s offense is going to be the best unit on the field and even though we might have missed the best number it doesn’t mean you have to stop looking at that side.
Take Atlanta +4.5. Best bet
Moneyline: Cowboys -215, Falcons +180
I made the Falcons plus the points my best bet because I think they are going to win the game outright. They are going to give up some yards and some points in this one, but every time they do they will be able to come right back and score. Every week you want to try to find an underdog with a great shot at winning and I am not sure there is a better one than Atlanta this week. They are going to score a lot of points in this one.
Take Atlanta +180.
This number has moved a lot too, starting at 50. That is a pretty big move and consistent with how I see this game playing out. Atlanta should be able to move the ball quickly up the field, and often. My only hesitation is that sometimes they stall in the red zone and to get this number we need touchdowns, not field goals. Dallas is a little more balanced and methodical, but they are not going to find much resistance from Atlanta. The Falcons gave up 38 points a week ago and might give up as many again in this one. Score Prediction: Atlanta 38 – Dallas 31.
Take the over 54.