Cowboys Favored Over Redskins, Though the Spread May Be Tough to Beat

The Cowboys are 11 1/2-point favorites against the 3-6 Redskins. Nearly
everyone believes that the Cowboys will win, but few think that Dallas will
cover this big spread.

According to the simulations, it will be a close call. As noted below, both
AccuScore and WhatIfSports predict an 11-point Dallas win.

Dallas 28, Washington 17

The Cowboys won 80% of AccuScore’s simulations by an average score of 28.3 to

The Cowboys offense took a week off vs. Green Bay but they should be much
better this week. There is a 62 percent chance that Dallas has at least 350
offensive yards and Dallas has an 83 percent chance of winning if the
offense performs as expected. If Washington holds Dallas to under 80 rushing
yards the Redskins are just 42 percent underdogs. If Washington can rush for
80+ yards while holding the Cowboys to under 80 Washington is actually the
65 percent favorite. Both QBs are averaging under 1 INT per simulation and
there are not expected to be many turnovers in the game. If Dallas commits
no more than 1 turnover and Tony Romo has no interceptions the Cowboys are
heavy 89 percent favorites.

WhatIfSports: Dallas 28, Washington 17

The results of the WhatIfSports simulations were nearly identical to
AccuScore’s simulations. On WhatIfSports, the Cowboys won 79.1% of the games by
an average score of 28-17. Tashard Choice had a bigger game in these
simulations, averaging 61 yards on 12 carries compared with Marion Barber’s 50
yards and Felix Jones’ 49 yards. The Dallas passing game was hardly impressive
in the sims, though, with Tony Romo throwing for fewer than 190 yards.

Madden Simulation: Washington 30, Dallas 23

I did a double-take when reading this one, as ESPN’s simulation of the game
using Madden resulted in a Washington win.

Heading into the fourth quarter, Dallas is cruising with a 20-13 lead
against their division rivals from D.C., but that’s when the unthinkable
happens and the Redskins offense explodes for 17 fourth-quarter points to
steal the game, 30-23.

That’s right, we used "Redskins" and "offense explodes" in the same
sentence thanks to the awesome running of Betts (96 yards, one touchdown)
and the game-winning catch by Santana Moss.

The loss is Dallas’ second in a row as they now fall to 6-4 on the season
after watching their defense give up 17 points in a quarter to one of the
lowest scoring teams in the NFL.

My Guess (6-3 this season
based on win-loss).


I had two very good weeks with
my predictions, but last week my guess just stunk. My thoughts last Saturday:

As for Sunday’s game, I
think Dallas will do well. The Packers can be a dangerous team, but their
confidence seemed shaken after the loss to the Vikings two weeks ago. They
were hardly impressive in the loss to Tampa Bay last week. Dallas should
bring a balanced attack, taking advantage of Aaron Kampman’s absence from
the game.

Balanced attack? Dallas passed
its way to a bunch of three-and-outs, and mistake after mistake didn’t help
matters. My poor guess dropped my season record to 6-3.


Week 1: Dallas 34, Tampa Bay 24
(actual: Dallas 34, Tampa Bay 21)

Week 2: N.Y. Giants 17, Dallas
14 (actual: N.Y. Giants 33, Dallas 31)

Week 3: Dallas 31, Carolina 21
(actual: Dallas 21, Carolina 7)

Week 4: Dallas 24, Denver 14
(actual: Denver 17, Dallas 10)

Week 5: Dallas 31, Kansas City
14 (actual: Dallas 26, Kansas City 20)

Week 7: Atlanta 28, Dallas 17
(actual: Dallas 37, Atlanta 21)

Week 8: Dallas 31, Seattle 17
(actual Dallas 38, Seattle 17)

Week 9: Dallas 23, Philadelphia
17 (actual: Dallas 20, Philadelphia 16)

Week 10: Dallas 31, Green Bay 20
(actual: Green Bay 17, Dallas 7)


As for this week, I think Dallas
will control the clock by using shorter passes and the running game. Romo may
have a couple of big plays to Miles Austin to help set up scores, but the real
story in this game will be the defense’s role in smothering the Redskins and the
offense’s role in grinding out yards and keeping the ball out of Washington’s
hands. Result: - Custom comment codes for MySpace, Hi5, Friendster and more


Dallas 20, Washington 6