DALLAS COWBOYS (5-5)
at NEW YORK GIANTS (4-6)
Kickoff: Sunday, 4:25 p.m. ET
Line: New York -2.5, Total: 44.5
The sizzling-hot Giants seek their fifth straight win on Sunday when the rival Cowboys pay a visit.
Dallas was humiliated 49-17 in New Orleans before last week’s bye, dropping the team to 1-4 SU (but 3-2 ATS) on the road. New York has allowed just 11.8 PPG with 11 takeaways during its four-game win surge. When these teams met in Week 1, the Giants outgained the Cowboys 478 to 331, but committed six turnovers and lost 36-31. New York is 8-4 (SU and ATS) in this series since 2008 behind QB Eli Manning’s 279 passing YPG and 25 TD in this span. But Dallas QB Tony Romo has 323 passing YPG and 12 TD in the past six meetings in this series. Both clubs have both positive and negative betting trends. The Cowboys are 15-4 ATS (79%) on the road after allowing 35 points or less in their last game since 1992, but are 0-7 ATS versus poor rushing teams (90 rush YPG or less) in the past three seasons. New York is 14-4 ATS (78%) off two straight home wins since 1992, but is just 30-54 ATS (36%) in November games in this same timeframe. Although Dallas star LB Sean Lee remains out with an injured hamstring, DE DeMarcus Ware (quad) and WR Miles Austin (hamstring) are both ready to return to action. The Giants are relatively injury-free, and expect both WR Hakeem Nicks and CB Corey Webster, who are listed as questionable with groin injuries, to suit up on Sunday.
Which NFC East team will pick up a crucial victory on Sunday? For the answer, connect to NFL Best Bets for all the StatFox Experts picks throughout the 2013 season and playoffs. The experts are surging in NFL Best Bets, combining for a 60% ATS record (29-19-6) over the past four weeks. StatFox Brian went 2-1-2 ATS in Week 11 to improve to 70% ATS (14-6-2) over the past five weeks where he's been above .500 every week. Brian has not had a losing week in NFL Best Bets since Week 3. StatFox Gary has four perfect weeks in NFL Best Bets since Week 4, while StatFox Scott is 58% ATS (15-11-1) in that same timeframe. StatFox Dave is 54% ATS (7-6-1) in NFL Best Bets since Week 8.
Dallas QB Tony Romo has the second-best passer rating of his career at 98.3, as he has completed 65% of his passes for 2,681 yards (7.2 YPA), 21 TD and just 6 INT. In the season-opening win over New York, he threw for only 5.4 YPA (263 yards on 49 attempts) with 2 TD and 1 INT. WR Miles Austin led the team that game with 10 catches, but he has totaled just five receptions since then, missing five of the past seven games with a bad hammy. WR Terrance Williams has been able to step up in Austin's absence, gaining 438 yards on 18.3 yards per catch and 5 TD in his past seven contests. But the go-to wideout remains WR Dez Bryant (749 rec. yards, 8 TD), who has been facing double and triple teams recently, catching just one pass at New Orleans in the last game. His career numbers versus the Giants are strong (495 rec. yards, 4 TD in seven games), but he has been held scoreless for four straight meetings, and managed only 22 yards in the Week 1 matchup. Dallas ranks 13th in the NFL in passing offense with 250.8 YPG, but is tied for 28th in rushing offense (77.0 YPG). RB DeMarco Murray has 56% of his team's carries this year, and has been very efficient, rushing for 548 yards on 4.9 YPC with 4 TD. He has also dominated the Giants the last two times he has faced them, piling up 265 total yards in these pair of wins. Defensively, the Cowboys have the NFL's worst total defense, allowing an eye-popping 439.8 total YPG. This includes a league-worst 313.0 passing YPG and 126.8 rushing YPG (4th-worst in NFL) on 4.9 yards per carry (2nd-worst in league). Dallas is allowing 25.8 PPG (25th in NFL) due largely to a porous red zone defense (62%, 27th in league) and a subpar third-down defense (41%, 24th in NFL). The one positive for this defense is that it has forced multiple turnovers in a game six different times this season, including six in that Week 1 win over the Giants.
New York has evolved into a much different team since that Sept. 8 loss in Dallas. After committing 3+ turnovers in each of their first six games, they have a total of six giveaways during their four-game win streak. The ground game has also come to life since RB Andre Brown has returned from a broken leg, as he has piled up 181 yards (3.8 YPC) and a touchdown in his two games. Establishing the run has been a key because QB Eli Manning has his lowest quarterback rating since his rookie year at 70.8. He has thrown just 12 TD and 17 INT over 10 games, while absorbing 26 sacks, just four shy of his career high. But despite his three picks in Week 1, Manning still dropped 450 yards and four touchdowns in Dallas, and will look to air it out again versus this generous Cowboys defense. WR Victor Cruz (824 rec. yards, 4 TD) is still his top receiver, but WR Rueben Randle is having a great second NFL season with 460 receiving yards and six touchdowns which have all come in the past six games. Randle's emergence has lessened Hakeem Nicks' role on the team, as Nicks has averaged a paltry 44.5 receiving YPG during the four-game win streak, and has yet to score a touchdown this season. But Nicks has had some big games in this series, piling up 627 yards and 3 TD in the past seven meetings with Dallas. New York's defense has played exceptionally well during the win streak, allowing just 253.3 total YPG. This includes 60.0 rushing YPG on 3.1 YPC in the four victories. The Giants' pass rush is also improving, amassing eight sacks over the past three weeks, and this pressure has led to multiple takeaways in each of the four wins.