There were only 27 points scored total in the corresponding game last season between these two NFC East rivals. Will we see a similarly low-scoring affair this Sunday night?
Last season, on January 2, the Eagles hosted the Cowboys in
Week 17 and won 14-13 in what became a war of attrition.
This year, will we see tons of points or another defensive
battle? NFL odds makers are thinking the former with the O/U listed at 50.5 at most
sportsbooks for now.
That's good for the second-highest total of the Week 8
slate. Only the New England Patriots-Pittsburgh Steelers battle royal (52) has
a higher number – and how damn good will that game be by the way?
Week 8 SNF: Cowboys @ Eagles
Sunday night's clash in the City of Brotherly Love has all
the makings of an exciting 60 minutes of action as well.
Meetings between the Eagles and Cowboys always seem to bring
the fireworks, but this edition should be entertaining for a different reason
this time around.
That's because we'll see a battle between the league's best
rushing offense (Philadelphia) versus Dallas' top rushing D.
The Cowboys have not allowed a 100-yard rusher this season
and are giving up just 69.7 YPG on the ground so far. How they'll fare against
Michael Vick, LeSean McCoy and the Eagles' run game (170.0 YPG) remains to be
seen but surely it will be their most demanding test yet.
There's no doubting the plethora of weapons that
Philadelphia have offensively. Speed kills and this team has plenty of it –
Vick and wideouts DeSean Jackson and Jeremy Maclin are three of the quickest
players in the NFL.
But where the Eagles have truly disappointed is on defense.
They brought in plenty of reinforcements during the offseason, trading for Dominique
Rodgers-Cromartie and then signing Nnamdi Asomugha, Jason Babin and Cullen
Jenkins among others.
Nice to meet you DeMarco Murray
With all the new faces came expectations of a hugely
improved defense but that couldn't be further from what's happened. Their shaky
D has been the primary reason the Eagles are just 2-4 SU right now.
These problems need to be addressed quickly with the Cowboys
coming to town, a team that's averaged close to 27 points over their past three
games. Suddenly there's also a new king in town over in Dallas.
His name? DeMarco Murray.
Tashard Choice had his chance to earn some more playing time
in relief of an injured Felix Jones, but fumbled for the second straight game
in the convincing win over the Rams. That paved the way for Murray to put on an
He went on to set a Cowboys record with 253 yards rushing on
25 carries. Early in the first quarter he had a 93-yard scamper for a touchdown
and then followed that with plenty more tough running, all but locking down the
starting role for the time being.
Because of shabby defensive line play, Philadelphia has been
terrible at defending the run this season so expect another healthy dosage of
Murray this Sunday night.
Expect offensive fireworks
A quick look at some trends: the OVER is 7-2 in the Cowboys'
last nine road games and an astounding 17-5 in their previous 22 games dating
back to last season. It's been an equal split this year though, with three
games ending above the O/U and three finishing below.
Meanwhile the UNDER has hit in four of Philadelphia’s past
five home matchups, though the OVER is 13-6 in their 19 most recent games
There's a reason last season's Week 17 matchup ended 14-13.
The two starting quarterbacks were Stephen McGee (Romo was hurt) and Kevin Kolb
and the Eagles also decided to rest DeSean Jackson and LeSean McCoy ahead of
With Tony Romo and Vick back under center, I foresee lots of big
plays and many more points being scored, especially considering the game will
be on national television. Add the OVER to your Sunday NFL picks.
FREE Pick: OVER 50.5
Bear in mind you can always leave your thoughts on this game
and the other Week 8 matchups in our Cowboys vs Eagles thread in the NFL Handicapping Forum.
Furthermore, check out our
previous article on the Eagles-Cowboys opening spread
and keep your eyes on SBR
for our official ATS play with regards to this week's edition of Sunday Night