· BET Cowboys-Steelers O 39 points (-110 DraftKings): PFF Greenline shows 2.4% edge on over.
· BET Tony Pollard U 8.5 carries (-105 BetMGM): 36.4% team rush share could drop Monday night with Cowboys likely trailing on road behind Cooper Rush.
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Estimated reading time: 4 mins
• Our prime-time previews pull all the key modeling numbers and simulated outcomes from PFF’s betting tools, including PFF NFL Greenline and the player props tool, which use top-down machine learning models backed by PFF’s exclusive data to derive value when compared to the betting market.
• -4 to +1: Things swung dramatically from the initial preseason spread of Dallas as a four-point road favorite as injuries have decimated the Cowboys in the first two games. New York also got off to a better start than what bettors expected, which pushed this number to -2.5 on the lookahead before moving back toward Dallas this week.
• Settling at -1: And essentially a pick ‘em on the moneyline, there's no real value based on PFF Greenline. Dallas would be the slight lean from the top-down models, but they don't show quite enough value to justify a bet.
• Greenline value on Over: The real spot seems to be on the total, which opened at 39.5 and briefly tested 39 before coming back up to the original number in most spots. It’s a painful feeling, but PFF Greenline finds some value in this game going over the total. It’s a half-point higher than my parlay recommendation, but since the first leg already came home, it will be the only spot I am really playing from a game perspective in this matchup.
BET: Over 39 (-110 DraftKings)
BET: Tony Pollard Under 8.5 Carries (-105 BetMGM)
• Tony Pollard usage continuing in this Dallas offense: Despite him playing only 45.9% of offensive snaps through two games. Desperate for playmakers, it makes sense that Pollard would see a high number of opportunities when he does get on the field. The issue is that Pollard’s been much more effective as a focal point in the passing offense and could see all of his usage come from those valuable touches. No Michael Gallup and a questionable TE Dalton Schultz only magnifies Pollard's featured role in the passing game and could come at the expense of touches rushing the football.
• If Dallas is playing from behind: Expect to see Pollard's rush attempts drop from his 36.4% team share so far this season. His target share is the spot where he is severely outpacing Ezekiel Elliott and should be close to the expectation once again on Monday night.
• PFF play-by-play simulation has Pollard at 8 or fewer carries 59% of the time: The PFF player props tool also shows a 13.9% edge at a price of -105, which is plenty of value to bet this prop. In all but the most positive game scripts, Pollard should finish below this rush attempt number on Monday night.
BET: Daniel Jones Under 0.5 Interceptions (-105 BetMGM)
• Two turnover-worthy plays: Jones has been effective keeping the ball out of harm's way, with only two turnover-worthy plays, including one interception in the first two games. He’s been much better using his legs to evade pressure and turning a negative play into a slightly positive one. If he continues to tuck and run, it will be difficult for the Cowboys to have any opportunities to secure an interception.
• At home as a slight favorite against a backup quarterback: Most likely the only way the Giants lose is if they play sloppy football and allow the Cowboys to make big plays on defense and special teams. Limiting those opportunities has to be the focal point for Jones, whose improvement this season should make this close to the expectation Monday night.
• 45.9% probability: The PFF’s player prop tool has him throwing an interception 45.9% of the time given his turnover-worthy play percentage. The play-by-play simulation shows a similar percentage.
DERIVATIVE BETS & SAME-GAME PARLAY
• Get weird on Monday night: Everyone will tell you we are in for another disastrous matchup in primetime, between a backup quarterback and one that seems headed in that direction. But the under expectation is fully priced in, and then some, which can provide opportunity if this matchup exceeds expectations.
• Both quarterbacks have heavy plus prices to go over 1.5 pass TDs: The market is pricing in a 35.1% chance (at BetMGM) of either quarterback throwing two-plus touchdowns. An uncorrelated parlay payout of two legs at +185 should pay out $712.25 on a $100 bet. BetMGM prices a payout of these two events happening at +450.
Historically, these two events are moderately correlated, but better from a positive expectation. By including a slightly higher total as the third leg, we bump up our payout but add little variance in us losing this bet if the first two legs come home. All in all, it’s a pretty sizable payout for watching a more entertaining matchup than expected.
OGP Build (+525 (BetMGM):
• Daniel Jones 2+ Passing TDs
• Cooper Rush 2+ Passing TDs
• Over 41.5
PFF’s newest tool is a play-by-play simulation that uses a bottoms-up prediction approach backed once again on PFF data and state-of-the-art machine learning models.