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Last Updated Aug 30, 2021, 13:48 PM

Washington vs. Cowboys Week 12 Predictions, Odds, Preview


  • November 25, 2020
  • By Jonathan Willis
  • VegasInsider.com

Washington vs. Dallas - Predictions

  • Score Prediction: Dallas 23 Washington 17
  • Best Bet: Under

Like it or not, either the Washington Football Team or the Dallas Cowboys will be in sole possession of first place in the NFC East at 4-7 after Thanksgiving.

This is the worst division in recent memory, and there will probably be a sub-.500 division winner for just the third time since realignment.

Interestingly, the four teams to win their division at .500 or worse have all gone on to win in the Wild Card Round before losing in the Divisional Rounds.

Betting Resources

Washington-Dallas Betting Odds

Line Movements

  • Spread: Dallas -3
  • Money-Line: Dallas -150, Washington +130
  • Total: 46
  • Odds Subject to Change

    Washington vs. Dallas Video Picks


    How to Handicap Dallas-Washington

    This will be the tenth meeting between Dallas and Washington on Thanksgiving. The Cowboys are 8-1 against Washington in the previous nine games played on this holiday.

    Washington smashed Dallas when these teams met in Week 7.

    Quarterback Andy Dalton went 9-19 for 75 yards and an interception before leaving the game with a concussion, as Washington took a 22-3 lead into halftime. The Cowboys finished the game with just 142 yards of offense in a 25-3 loss.

    Both teams are coming off a win last week. Washington knocked off Cincinnati to pick up its third home victory, but Ron Rivera’s side is 0-4 on the road.

    They lost by two touchdowns to both Arizona and Cleveland in September, but they stayed within a field goal of the New York Giants and Detroit Lions in their last two games outside the nation’s capital.

    Dallas failed to secure a cover in its first eight games. The Cowboys were unable to cover the number in narrow wins over the Giants and the Atlanta Falcons, but they hung around against Pittsburgh just before their bye week and pulled off the upset as a seven-point underdog against Minnesota last week. Four of Dallas’ last five games have gone under the total.

    2020 Betting Stats

    (Straight Up - SU, Against the Spread - ATS, Over-Under - O/U)

    Betting Analysis - Washington

    • Overall: 3-7 SU, 5-5 ATS, 4-6 O/U
    • Road: 0-4 SU, 1-3 ATS, 2-2 O/U
    • Offense PPG: 20.0 (Rank 29)
    • Defense PPG: 22.7 (Rank 9)
    • Offense YPG: 324.0 (Rank 28)
    • Defense YPG: 315.8 (Rank 5)

    The Alex Smith story has been an inspiring one. Smith recorded his first victory in two years against Cincinnati last week. The veteran overcame a devastating injury that required 17 surgeries to get back on the field, and he is a shoo-in to be named NFL Comeback Player of the Year in a couple months.

    Smith has looked somewhat rusty since replacing the injured Kyle Allen. That’s to be expected after such a long time away from the field, but he has thrown just two touchdowns with four interceptions in three starts against subpar defenses.

    Washington has a superb second-year receiver in Terry McLaurin. McLaurin leads the team in every receiving category with 62 receptions for 871 yards and three touchdowns. Unfortunately, the talent pool is largely barren aside from him at the skill positions. Cam Sims has the second-best numbers as a wide receiver with just 13 catches for 245 yards.

    The run game has been serviceable with Antonio Gibson and J.D. McKissic carrying the load. Gibson has been the primary ball carrier with 530 yards (4.5 YPC) and eight touchdowns, while McKissic is averaging 4.4 YPC.

    Putting pressure on the passer is vital in this day and age, but no team has invested in this position group like Washington.

    Chase Young was the fourth straight defensive lineman taken in the first round by this team, teaming up with Jonathan Allen, Daron Payne, and Montez Sweat.

    Unsurprisingly, this defense gets a ton of pressure, posting the second-best sack rate in the NFL while allowing a league-best 195.4 YPG through the air.

    Betting Analysis - Dallas

    • Overall: 3-7 SU, 2-8 ATS, 5-5 O/U
    • Home: 2-3 SU, 1-4 ATS, 3-2 O/U
    • Offense PPG: 23.5 (Rank 20)
    • Defense PPG: 31.8 (Rank 32)
    • Offense YPG: 393.1 (Rank 6)
    • Defense YPG: 386.4 (Rank 24)

    Dalton is coming off his best game of the year.

    The former Cincinnati quarterback didn’t inspire much confidence in his first two starts, but he was solid against the Vikings last week. He completed 68.8 percent of his passes for a little over 200 yards with three touchdowns and an interception.

    Dalton does need to limit his turnovers though, having thrown at least one interception in all three of his starts.

    The Cowboys boast one of the most impressive collections of talent at wide receiver with Amari Cooper, CeeDee Lamb and Michael Gallup.

    Cooper leads Dallas with 65 receptions for 736 yards and two touchdowns, while Lamb (13 receptions for 20 yards or more) and Gallup (16.0 YPR) have been big play threats.

    One of the most frustrating developments of the season for Dallas fans has been the lack of a run game. RB Ezekiel Elliott has not been the same back that he was over his first four years in the NFL, averaging just 3.9 YPC with just one run of 20 yards or more. Elliott did run for over 100 yards for the first time in 2020 last week, and it will be up to him to help keep the pressure off Dalton.

    Dallas is giving up more points (31.8 PPG) than any other team in the NFL. The pass defense was the problem early on, but the run defense has been the issue in recent weeks. The Cowboys are conceding 4.9 YPC and an NFC-worst 153.8 YPG on the ground. These linebackers have underperformed, and the secondary is missing rookie Trevon Diggs.

    All-Time Record on Thursday

    • Washington 5-14 (0-9 at Dallas on Thanksgiving)
    • Dallas 40-24-1 (31-20-1 on Thanksgiving)

    T&C's Apply, 21+, Only in CO

    Head-to-Head History

    • Oct. 25, 2020 - Washington 25 vs. Dallas 3, Football Team +1, Under 44.5
    • Dec. 19, 2019 - Dallas 47 vs. Washington 16, Cowboys -12.5, Over 47.5
    • Sep. 15, 2019 - Dallas 31 at Washington 21, Cowboys -6, Over 46.5

    Dallas leads the all-time series between these two teams 73-46-2.

    They have been lights out over the last two decades and change, winning 33 of the last 46 games between these two NFC East rivals.

    Last Meeting (Washington 25 Dallas 3)

    Washington led from start to finish against Dallas in October. Allen completed 60 percent of his passes for 194 yards and two scores, while Gibson ran for 128 yards and a score. The defense was lights out with six sacks on 32 dropbacks.

    Notable Betting Trends

    -- Washington is 4-10 ATS in its last 14 division games

    -- The Cowboys have failed to cover five straight games as a favorite

    -- The over is 9-4 in Dallas’ last 13 division games

    Key Injuries

    Washington

    • K Dustin Hopkins: Groin - Questionable
    • LB Jared Norris: Hamstring - Questionable
    • OT Cornelius Lucas: Ankle - Questionable
    • S Deshazor Everett: Ankle - Questionable
    • LB Ryan Anderson: Knee - Questionable
    • OT Geron Christian: Knee - Out

    Dallas

    • CB Anthony Brown: Ribs - Questionable
    • LB Luke Gifford: Suspension - Out


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