Of all the NFL matchups in this particular season that offered such promise before the year began, this one arrives as a bit of a stinker. Regardless, when the Pittsburgh Steelers visit the Dallas Cowboys, the sportsbook obligingly gives us NFL betting lines for you to bet online, no matter how lopsided they may be. We break down the game to offer some NFL picks to take to the sportsbook.
|Game: Pittsburgh Steelers (7-0) at Dallas Cowboys (2-6) |
Location: AT&T Stadium
Time: 4:25p.m. ET
The Steelers emerged undefeated from last week’s marquee fight against the Baltimore Ravens. In a game where the Ravens soundly beat the Steelers on the stat sheet, Pittsburgh won straight up as a 3½-4 point underdog on the strength of their defense’s four combined interceptions and fumble recoveries. The 28-24 final fell to the over, disappointing the market which bought it down from an open of 49 to a close of 46.
Under rookie Ben DiNucci, the Cowboys faced the Philadelphia Eagles as significant underdogs, and the betting market brought overwhelming support for the Eagles laying heavy points, moving the spread from 10 up to 12½ at kickoff. The Eagles complied, and with some assistance from sketchy officiating, covered the chalk in a 23-9 final that never came close to the total of 43½.
NFL Betting Lines
Moneyline: Pittsburgh Steelers -800 (7-0) | Dallas Cowboys +600 (2-6)
In case you don’t know, Dallas had seen enough of Ben DiNucci after his one game plus, and have since invoked a plan that’s elicited some chuckles among observers. They’re taking the entire week to share first-team snaps between their two other backup QBs Garrett Gilbert and Cooper Rush. With the anticipation somewhere on the scale between awaiting a presidential election and a botched gender-reveal party, presumably the Cowboys will breathlessly announce their winner sometime Friday. Or, maybe they’ll play them each a half, or alternate plays, or maybe a two-quarterback set. Either way, oddsmakers got tired of waiting, figured they’re roughly the same awful quarterback and installed the Steelers as a heavy favorite.
If laying eight to win one is your cup of tea, this is actually a good price for the Steelers in this range. Most bettors will be more comfortable putting this one in all parlays, and it is sure to be the survivor pick of the week for those with Pittsburgh left on their dance card.
Pick: Pittsburgh Steelers to win
Point Spread: Pittsburgh Steelers -14 (6-1) | Dallas Cowboys +14 (0-8)
The opening number of 13½ didn’t last long before it got bought up to a full two touchdowns. Normally in a mismatch of this size, the play would be to ensure whatever outstanding injuries were accounted for and take the generous points. You could normally expect that to happen before Sunday, but, with the Cowboys flashing two untested quarterbacks on the last day of practice, we don’t anticipate seeing a thrush of Dallas dog money even at +14.
On the other hand, if you enjoy crippling anxiety, laying two touchdowns with Mike Tomlin’s Steelers can make for an exciting third quarter. Given no other choice, we’d reluctantly lay the points, but recommend if you make a bet of it, wait to see if the line drops back to 13½. It’s seriously hard to imagine that Dallas’ near-record 0-8 run against the spread isn’t causing some models to creak under the stress of offering the Cowboys enough points to not drop a ninth straight.
Pick: Pittsburgh Steelers -14
Over/Under 42 points
The number notched up from 41 to 42, and we’d lean to the over. Expect the Steelers to hang 30 on the Cowboys before taking their foot off the gas. Our numbers don’t give the Cowboys as much of a chance of getting above 13 points, but do project good probabilities of the Steelers adding even more than 30 to push it to the over.