Sunday Night Football NFL Picks: Cowboys & Saints Will Go 'Over' 47.5

Jason Lake

Saturday, October 3, 2015 11:24 PM UTC

Saturday, Oct. 3, 2015 11:24 PM UTC

The Dallas Cowboys are playing the New Orleans Saints at the Superdome, and Sunday night's NFL odds have the total well below 50 points. It's that kind of year.

Jason's 2015 record as of Oct. 3: 13-7 ATS; 0-1 ML (-1.00 units); 7-9 Total

One year ago, the Dallas Cowboys hosted the New Orleans Saints in Week 4. The total for that game was 53.5 points, and the OVER cashed in when the Cowboys won 38-17. Nothing particularly unusual about that. The OVER also got paid when the same two teams met in 2012 and 2013, with the total set at 54 points. It's the Cowboys and the Saints.

Time to downsize those expectations. Dallas will be back at the Superdome this Sunday night (8:30 p.m. ET, NBC), but as we go to press, there's a total of 47.5 on our odds board. And that's one of the biggest totals for Week 4. So of course, people are pounding the OVER, right?


UNDER Takers
Some people are. This game was kept circled until Friday afternoon, just after we published our NFL pick against the spread (Dallas is still +3.5). Once the total opened at 47 points, the OVER was the unanimous choice of early bettors – for about two hours. Then the total was bumped up to 47.5, and presto, the consensus was 90 percent on the UNDER.

Interesting. When it comes to magic numbers and the over/under, 47 does have some magical qualities. Wizard of Odds quotes the “fair price” of buying a half-point from 47 to 47.5 (or 46.5) as seven cents. Nothing to sneeze at, but it's still the rough equivalent of buying your way from +4 to +4.5 on the point spread. Perhaps this is just a case of the sharps getting their usual early jump, with the public getting in quickly – it was Friday afternoon when the lines went up.


Weeden for Dollars
Easy to see why people would be interested in the UNDER. Brandon Weeden will be at quarterback for the Cowboys instead of Tony Romo, and Saints QB Drew Brees will be playing with a damaged shoulder – assuming he plays, which is still not 100 percent at press time. That's the plan, though.

The OVER has its logic, too. The Cowboys have a strong offensive line, and Weeden held up his end of the bargain in last week's 39-28 loss to the Atlanta Falcons (OVER 43.5), making a lot of short passes and not very many mistakes. Dallas also has a poor defense, No. 21 overall on the DVOA charts at Football Outsiders.

The Saints contribute the No. 31-ranked defense in the NFL, but their No. 18-ranked offense has been a big disappointment. Playing Arizona and Carolina on the road will do that to your numbers, though, and Football Outsiders doesn't adjust for defense until after this week. Besides, both those games went OVER their posted totals anyway. We'll take the OVER, thank you kindly – especially when there's still a 47 on the NFL odds board.

NFL Pick: Take OVER 47.5 at 5Dimes

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