Now that Tony Romo is about to make his return at quarterback, the Dallas Cowboys should be a very popular NFL pick when they visit the Miami Dolphins this Sunday.
Jason's 2015 record as of Nov. 15: 38-34-2 ATS; 0-1 ML (-1.00 units); 22-28 Total
Quarterbacking has not been the main issue with the Dallas Cowboys. Even the commentators said as much during Sunday's 10-6 loss to the Tampa Bay Buccaneers (+1 at home). But is anyone listening? In the end, Matt Cassel guided the Cowboys to four straight losses at 1-3 ATS, after they went 0-3 SU and ATS under Brandon Weeden.
It's all flotsam under the bridge now. Tony Romo is expected to make his return this Sunday (1:00 p.m. ET, FOX) when Dallas visits the Miami Dolphins, and with his return, we expect the betting public to come out and hammer the Cowboys. They're a pick 'em on our Week 11 NFL odds at press time; the early consensus was two-thirds in favor of the Dolphins before narrowing to 53 percent.
Fix It Again, Tony
Romo has played the role of punching bag before. Casual fans have been making fun of him ever since he was promoted to starting QB in 2006. It's been mostly unfair, of course. But Romo had the best season of his career in 2014, Dallas won the NFC East at 12-4 (10-6 ATS), and they were off to a good start this year before Romo broke his collarbone in Week 2.
Romo only looks better when you put him next to Weeden and Cassel. Weeden actually did a good job in relief, playing at a league-average level according to the DVOA stats at Football Outsiders. Cassel, not so much. Assuming Romo is close to 100 percent, which is already a big assumption, he should indeed be an improvement at quarterback. For many recreational bettors, that's the be-all and end-all of the Cowboys situation.
Many recreational bettors give approximately zero figs about defense. The Cowboys went into Week 10 ranked No. 24 in the league (No. 18 pass, No. 27 rush) in defensive efficiency. There have been some improvements along the way, particularly with DE Greg Hardy coming off the suspended list. But the defense took yet another hit when CB Morris Claiborne hurt his hamstring against Tampa Bay. He was due to have an MRI on Monday.
Sure, Claiborne hasn't been very good this year, but there are only so many warm bodies left on this roster. Does that make the Dolphins (4-5 SU and ATS) the right NFL pick for this matchup? Maybe. We'll take a closer look later this week, but when it comes to public money, the Fins haven't been attracting much of it. We don't expect that to change much in Week 11, even after their come-from-behind 20-19 win over the Philadelphia Eagles (–5.5 at home). Good thing for the Dolphins they got matched up with the NFC East this year.