Don’t look now, but Buffalo is 8-3 straight up and 7-3-1 against the spread this season after the Bills (-3.5) beat up the Broncos 20-3.
In a steady rain, Dak and the Cowboys couldn’t muster much momentum against the Patriots’ pesky defense. While Dallas (+5.5) did cover to improve to 7-4 ATS, the 13-9 loss at New England dropped America’s Team to 6-5 overall and losers of two of their past three games.
Opening Odds Analysis
The Cowboys opened as 6.5-point home favorites before a slight tick up to Dallas -7. Buffalo’s moneyline opened at +270 at BetOnline and the game point total at 45. The total has gone UNDER in six of the Bills’ last seven road games with an average combined score of 37.43.
The Cowboys are 8-2 SU in their last 10 home games, but 3-6-1 ATS in their last 10 games when home favorites of 7 to 7.5 points. Dallas is, however, 3-0-1 ATS in its four most recent games in that situation.
The Bills are 2-8 ATS in their last 10 games after consecutive ATS wins. After finishing 4-3 ATS last season when a road dog of 7 or more points, Buffalo has yet to be this heavy a road dog during the 2019 campaign. In those seven games last year, the UNDER hit in five of them.
Buffalo News & Notes
Winners of three of their last four and five of their last seven, the Bills are about to enter a gauntlet of a schedule to wrap up the regular season. After the Cowboys this Thursday, they still have to face the Ravens and Patriots over the next month. However, given the way Josh Allen and the defense have performed, Buffalo’s playoff prospects remain strong.
Allen has game-managed his heart out over recent weeks. He’s only thrown one interception in his past six games. Over his past three games, the second-year quarterback out of Wyoming is averaging 235.6 pass yards and 46.6 rush yards per game with five passing and three rushing touchdowns.
However, as we know, the Bills’ playoff chances truly ride on how well the defense performs. Granted, their strength of schedule over the past three games has been weak, but their top five defensive metrics have still improved this late in the season:
|Stat Category||Season-to-Date||Last 3 Games|
|Points Allowed Per Game||15.7||14.0|
|Rush Yards APG||104.4||85.0|
|Pass Yards APG||184.4||183.3|
|Opp. 3rd Down Conversion Rate||33.3%||27.8%|
|Opp. Red Zone Attempts Per Game||2.5||2.3|
Already ranked among the league’s best defenses, Buffalo actually improved on every metric above. Yes, it came against the Browns, Dolphins and Broncos but also occurred in weeks 10 to 12 when most teams are beat up and exhausted from the grind of the season. So, you can spin the improvement to whatever side of the argument you wish. I choose to look at this elite defense as improving and the offense finding its balance.
Led by Devin Singletary’s first 100-yard rush game of his career, Buffalo racked up 244 yards on the ground against the Broncos. Singletary paced a three-headed monster that saw Frank Gore rush for 65 (and pass Barry Sanders on the all-time rushing leaders list) and Allen chip in 56.
On the injury front, we’re waiting to see if center Mitch Morse’s finger injury will keep him out on Thanksgiving.
Dallas News & Notes
Jerry Jones is not happy with his coaching staff ... again.
Jerry Jones. Kinda pissed at the outcome. pic.twitter.com/YQ2is9slMG— Tom E. Curran (@tomecurran) November 25, 2019
The Cowboys converted just two of 13 third downs and were 0-2 in the red zone while their special teams play was a mess at New England. However, home is where the heart is and where an obvious Dallas advantage exists:
|Points Per Game||30.2||24.0|
|Pass Yards Per Game||338.6||280.0|
|Rush Yards Per Game||137.0||123.8|
As he often does, Jason Garrett will douse the fire under his seat with a timely home win over an overachieving Bills squad to keep Jerry happy and extend Garrett’s 10th NFL life to 11.
On the injury front, star linebacker Leighton Vander Esch missed the Patriots game due to a neck injury and is questionable for Thursday.
Betting Pick: UNDER 45
The line moving from 6.5 to 7 is fishy and baiting us to back the Bills following the Cowboys’ anemic effort at New England. However, the Cowboys are flat-out better at home. This is a game where the Bills defense props them up to keep things interesting, but lack of offense costs Buffalo in the end. I really want to lean Buffalo +7, but prefer the UNDER.