Cincinnati Bengals vs. Dallas Cowboys
Date and Time: Sunday, October 9, 2016, 4:25 p.m. ET
Location: AT&T Stadium, Arlington, TX
Week 5 NFL Odds at BookMaker.eu: Bengals -1, 45.5
Bengals vs. Cowboys TV Coverage: CBS
We’re yet to see the Bengals fire on all cylinders this season. They gutted out a 23-22 Week 1 win in New York against the Jets, and while they outgained the division rival Steelers the following week, a pair of costly turnovers proved to be their demise in a 24-16 defeat. The loss to Denver in their home opener was eye opening with the defense allowing Trevor Siemian to go HAM, but Marvin Lewis’s troops were able to bounce back last Thursday night with a solid defensive effort against the Dolphins in which they allowed just 222 total yards and seven points to hit the scoreboard.
With Burfict back in the mix and the Cowboys starting rookies at the quarterback and running back position, Cincinnati certainly holds the edge defensively with it taking on the tougher overall schedule.
The injury to Tony Romo hasn’t had the effect most thought would derail the Cowboys for another season under the Jason Garrett regime. Instead, Dak Prescott has been a saving grace with his command of the offense, while Ezekiel Elliott has become more confident with every passing week. Each played a large role in last week’s road win and cover against the Niners with Prescott completing nearly 72 percent of his passes for 245 yards and two touchdowns, and Zeke logging his second straight 100+ yard effort with a touchdown.
The Cowboys have split their two home games thus far beating the Bears on Sunday Night Football and dropping a tough 20-19 decision to the Giants in a game they could have just as easily won back in Week 1.
Matchup to Watch
Cincinnati has had all kinds of problems keeping opposing defenses from dropping Andy Dalton to the turf with regularity. The Bengals are giving up an average of 3.2 sacks per game. That’s a gross figure, but you must take into account that three of the four opponent’s its run up against ranks out amongst the top-11 teams in the league at sacking the quarterback.
Dallas hasn’t gotten much pressure from its front seven in averaging just 1.5 sacks per game, but three of the opposing offensive lines faced rank amongst the top-12 in the league.
Something has to giver here. Either Cincinnati’s offensive line stinks, or the Cowboys front seven stinks. Whichever front line is best able to win the battle at the point of attack will have the better overall odds of coming out on top of this matchup.
Bengals vs. Cowboys Free Picks
Even with the Cowboys rattling off three straight wins, I’m not buying into what Jerry Jones is trying to sell me. I believe the Giants are the only playoff worthy entrant of the bunch, and they lost that game. Granted by only a single point, but I’m curious to see how that rematch plays out in Week 14. Cincinnati hasn’t been playing with a full deck all season. It’s gotten some instrumental pieces back on defense, and it showed last week when it simply shut Ryan Tannehill and the Dolphins offense down.
Prescott is the type of player you want to root for, but he’s yet to run up against a defense the caliber of Cincinnati’s. If he succeeds once again, so be it. The fairy tale continues. I don’t see it happening however, and I fully expect the Bengals to ride its ground game and the right arm of the “Red Rifle” to a solid win against the Week 5 odds at BookMaker.eu.
Bengals vs. Cowboys ATS Pick: Bengals -1 at BookMaker.eu
Bengals vs. Cowboys Score Prediction: Bengals 27 – Cowboys 16