Sunday Night Football Picks Predictions: 3 Best Bets for Buccaneers vs Cowboys
Sean Gardner/Getty Images. Pictured: Tom Brady.
NFL Odds & Picks
Tony Pollard has spent much of training camp lining up as a slot wide receiver, a position the Cowboys are thin at after the departure of Amari Cooper and the injury keeping Michael Gallup out of the lineup.
There’s a distinct possibility that Pollard effectively the WR2 in Dallas, in addition to helping to spell Ezekiel Elliott in the backfield. Cowboys coach Mike McCarthy said he views the both as his number one running back this season, which isn’t how “number one” works but we get the point.
Pollard and Elliot combined for roughly 6.5 targets per game. With the high catch rate of running back targets this prop would be roughly a coin flip based on last year’s usage. If Pollard sees any work as a wideout, it’s a huge value.
I'd bet this one down to -150.
Billy Ward: The full-game total for Sunday Night Football has settled in at 50 or 50.5 across the industry. The first half line of 24.5 at BetMGM makes up less than half that, which is a value given the style of play between both teams involved.
Both Dallas and Tampa Bay played at a quicker pace in the first half of games last season, with Tampa slowing things down by about 2.5 seconds per play after halftime, and Dallas by roughly a second.
Much of that was due to the fact that both teams frequently held commanding leads late into games, while playing at a quicker pace in close contests. This one is expected to be close with a 2.5-point spread, but should be even closer in the first half.
With both coaching staffs more or less unchanged from last season, I’m expecting a similarly aggressive approach from both teams as long as this one stays close. There’s no promise that’s the case in the second half, but will be the case at least for the start of the first.
I'd take the 24.5 line down to -115, and would also be willing to bet over 25 at +100 or -105.
Chris Raybon: These teams are missing nearly five football fields worth of receiving yardage from the last matchup. They're replacing six offensive lineman who played 336 combined snaps without a sack allowed in that contest. And both teams have pass defenses that finished top-10 in DVOA and top-five in pressure.
According to our Action Labs data, Primetime unders with a total of 49 or higher are 100-76-2 (56%) since 2004, covering by an average of 1.4 points per game.
We can always count on a bit of Brady inflation in the total in these types of games. When Brady is in primetime with a total of 49 or higher, the under is 14-10 (58%), covering by an average of 3.0 points per game.