On Sunday, the Dallas Cowboys opened as a -1.5 favorite on the road at the Philadelphia Eagles, but the line has climbed to Dallas -7 across the sports betting industry.
The line surge came in response to Dallas coach Mike McCarthy saying his starters will play on Saturday night — and additional news about a dozen positive Covid tests among Philadelphia players. BetMGM and FanDuel were among the books dealing Dallas -7 as of Wednesday afternoon.
NFL · Sat (1/8) @ 8:15pm ET
|Lincoln Financial Field, Philadelphia, Pennsylvania|
Dallas Cowboys (11-5, 12-4 ATS) at Philadelphia Eagles (9-7, 8-8 ATS)
Time: 8:15 p.m. EST
DraftKings Line: Cowboys -7 (42.5)
The skinny: Two teams that have clinched playoff berths meet at Lincoln Financial Field, with NFC East champ Dallas having more to gain with a victory than wild-card Philadelphia.
Facts: The Cowboys lost hope of getting the NFC’s top seed and the conference bye with their 25-22 home loss to Arizona on Sunday as a 6.5-point favorite, sliding from the No. 2 seed to No. 4. In a perfect Cowboys world this weekend, though, they could move back up to the second slot, according to NFL Research, provided they win here and the Rams, Cardinals and Bucs all lose Sunday.
Philadelphia is currently the NFC’s seventh seed and in a best-case scenario could move to No. 6 with a victory,along with a loss by the 49ers and a win by the Saints. Rookie coach Nick Sirianni is being coy as to how the Eagles will approach the game with a Covid-ravaged unit. The team put RBs Jordan Howard and Boston Scott on the Covid protocol list Monday, along with standout DT Fletcher Cox, center Jason Kelce and TE Dallas Goedert, among others. Philadephia’s top RB, Miles Sanders, was already suffering with a hand injury.
QB Jalen Hurts is still dealing with the effects of an ailing ankle, and the Eagles might be better off not fighting to the death to move up one playoff spot.
Analysis: With Cowboys czar Jerry Jones saying the Cowboys will be playing to win, Dak Prescott and his offensive buddies likely will have an extended stay on the field. They’ll try to smooth out the kinks of a unit that had only 45 rushing yards last week, matching the worst output the past four seasons.
For the Eagles, energetic QB Gardner Minshew could see a lot of action in relief of Hurts or even from the opening kickoff. In Minshew’s lone start this year, a 33-18 win at the N.Y. Jets, his 133.7 passer rating was better than anything Hurts has produced this season.
But with the Eagles’ whole backfield possibly not suiting up, Minshew (or Hurts) won’t be able to do it all. So it looks like a comfortable win for the more desperate team. After all, Philly hasn’t beaten a winning team all season, including a 41-21 loss in Dallas in Week 3, and its current four-game winning streak has come at the expense of teams with double-digit losses.
Cowboys at Eagles Pick
Cowboys 27, Eagles 13
Last week: 3-3 ATS, 4-2 SU
Season total: 120-123-3 (.490) ATS, 151-94-1 (.617) SU