Week 13 TNF Capper Court: Saints Are Scorching Hot, But Lean Is On Cowboys

nfl week 13 saints cowboys

SBR Staff

Monday, November 26, 2018 2:24 PM UTC

Monday, Nov. 26, 2018 2:24 PM UTC

Welcome to the "Capper Court," where five of SBR's NFL handicappers will provide their opinions on Thursday night and Sunday night NFL games. The majority rules! It's Saints-Cowboys on TNF in Week 13. 

New Orleans (10-1 SU, 9-2 ATS) at Dallas (6-5 SU, 6-5 ATS)Thursday, 8:20 p.m. ET (Fox/NFL Network)Free Majority Pick: Cowboys +7.5 Opening LineBest Line Offered: BetOnline

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Matthew Jordan:

Could be a playoff preview as the Saints are obviously going to win the NFC South and the Cowboys probably win the NFC East with the Redskins losing QB Alex Smith and the Eagles in a Super Bowl hangover funk. Other than a puzzling Week 9 Monday night loss to the Titans, Dallas has been quite good at home (4-1 SU, 3-2 ATS) and had little trouble beating Washington 31-23 on Thanksgiving afternoon. Ezekiel Elliott had his third straight 100-yard game in not coincidentally the Cowboys’ third consecutive win. Dallas is 5-1 this season when Zeke hits 100 yards.

The Saints are first against the run, however, and allowed 26 rushing yards to the Falcons in the 31-17 Thanksgiving night victory. It New Orleans’ fewest rushing yards allowed in a game since 2000. It was also the Saints’ 10th straight victory and they are on the verge of clinching the division. New Orleans is really thin at receiver right now, though. This will be the Saints’ first look at Dak Prescott and Elliott as the teams haven’t played since 2015 when Prescott was at Mississippi State and Elliott at Ohio State. Dallas has won just two of the past 11 in the series, for what that’s worth (little). The Saints aren’t going to close the season with 15 straight victories, and there were a few cracks shown vs. Atlanta, which kept shooting itself in the foot. I believe Dallas wins straight up here but obviously will take the points. The home team is 4-1 ATS in the past five meetings.

Swinging Johnson:

The Saints dispatched their last foe, the Atlanta Falcons, by the score of 31-17 in the last of three NFL Turkey Day throwdowns. New Orleans narrowly covered the 13-point impost but a cover is a cover and the Saints have been a veritable ATM for their backers, getting the money in nine of 11 contests this season. Drew Brees has been unconscious this season and even NO’s running game is sixth in the league, averaging north of 133 yard per game, courtesy of the multi-dimensional Alvin Kamara and to a lesser extent, Mark Ingram.

At this point the oddsmakers keep inflating the number, New Orleans keeps covering, and the masses keep laying the lumber. But even a freight train stops, right? Dallas is precisely the team to derail the Saints and it’s in large measure due to its defense that has held opponents to 18.8 points per game over the Cowboys’ last six contests. And let’s not forget that although the Saints are outstanding against the run (as are the Cowboys BTW), they are ranked 29th against the pass and Dak Prescott is getting his groove on now that Amari Copper is in the fold. The oddsmakers are daring us to grab north of a touchdown with a playoff contending team at home and we will be happy to oblige.

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If you’re counting out the Dallas Cowboys against the New Orleans Saints next week because of the Saints 10 game win streak
In 2009 the Dallas Cowboys ended the New Orleans Saints 13 game win streak, which to this day is their longest in team history

— Redzone Reader (@RedzoneReader) November 24, 2018
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Doug Upstone:

Last week I said getting out in front and trying to slow down New Orleans was a suicide mission. This week I'm bringing that back and just saying you might get hurt, but it's worth looking into. The Saints have not lost since their first game and have covered the spread nine straight times. Since suffering a very ugly loss against Tennessee, Dallas has rattled off a trio of wins and covers and jumped into a first-place tie with Washington in the NFC East. The Cowboys' running game has found its footing and has averaged nearly 150 YPG (149.6) in this stretch, which has also helped Dak Prescott be a more effective thrower at quarterback.

For Dallas to have a shot at beating the number, they will have to run effectively against New Orleans No. 1 run defense to take advantage of their No. 30 pass defense. The Cowboys defense realizes they will give up some yardage, but they will have to stand up in the red zone and force field goals attempts. Since last season, Dallas is 6-0 ATS versus defenses allowing 260 or more passing yards a game, which should give them a shot.

Kevin Stott:

NFL MVP candidate Drew Brees (73-55 ATS on Road, 5-0 ATS Road in 2018) and the Saints (8-2 ATS) will play their second straight Thursday night game as they head to Jerry World to put their high-powered Offense (37.2 ppg, #1) up against the Cowboys now respectable Defense (19.0 ppg, #3). And whereas many games on the schedule look good before the season starts and then a letdown when gameday actually arrives, this NFC matchup has more luster now than most would have ever expected with both in full stride and playing good on both sides of the ball.

Sean Payton (109-86-4 ATS) and New Orleans are 6-8 SU, 3-6 ATS and 2-2 ATS as Favorites on TNF and 3-1 ATS the L4 in this series after winning and covering ATS against the Falcons in NO on Thanksgiving night, so with Dallas facing Washington on Turkey Day, both will head in with (the normal) 6 Days Rest. Even though the AT&T crowd will be at full throat and the Cowgirls in full kick, we’ve seldom seen an Offense as proficient with vet Brees near-perfect (29 TD/2 INT) and his Saints having NFC Homefield on their minds.

Rainman:

People will likely want to bet on Dallas for two reasons: They play well at home and they’ve been playing well lately. However, the Cowboys haven’t really been tested in Dallas. They beat the Giants and Redskins by a score or less. They beat up on disappointing Jacksonville. Most lately, they lost to Tennessee. They are on a three-game winning streak, but those wins came against losing teams in Philadelphia and Atlanta and Washington with its backup quarterback. Now they’ll have to face not only a winning team, but arguably the best and hottest team. The Saints have covered nine games in a row, including five by double digits. They walloped fellow NFC contenders Minnesota and L.A. Rams.

Dallas relies above on all Ezekiel Elliott. He’s had 68 carries and 18 receptions in his last three games. During Dallas’ win streak, the best run defense that he had to face was Washington’s middling one. The Saints, though, rank second in opposing YPC, having limited the likes of Todd Gurley to fewer than 100 yards. Dallas ranks 19th in opposing passer rating, so expect Drew Brees to improve his 29-to-2 touchdown-to-interception ratio.

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