NFL Week 3 Monday Night Football: An Old-School Game Between Cowboys and Giants

cooper rush dallas cowboys quarterback nfl
Cooper Rush #10 of the Dallas Cowboys passes the ball against the Cincinnati Bengals during the first half at AT&T Stadium. Wesley Hitt/Getty Images/AFP

We have a very interesting NFC East matchup as the New York Giants host the Dallas Cowboys.

After losing their starting quarterback for an extended period, Dallas pulled off an upset by beating the Bengals with a last-second field goal.

The Giants meanwhile are 2-0 behind a solid defense that has been doing the heavy lifting for this team.

Dallas Cowboys vs. New York Giants

Monday, September 26, 2022 – 08:15 PM EDT at MetLife Stadium

Rush Steps Up in Prescott’s Absence 

When Dak Prescott went down with a fractured joint near his thumb, most expected them to lose big against the Cincinnati Bengals, who were desperate not to go 0-2 on the season.

In steps Cooper Rush, who played surprisingly well in his duel with Joe Burrow to lead the Cowboys to an upset win over the Bengals

Rush wasn’t amazing, but he did well enough to at least be able to say that the QB duel ended in a draw, which is the reason his team won. Burrow has been in conversations as a top-ten quarterback in this league.

Even if you disagree with that based on his early season performances, he’s no worse than top ten. Rush is nowhere close to that level so he has to be given a lot of credit for how he stepped into the spotlight and performed. 

What Do The Odds Say?

This week Rush will be on the road against the Giants who have been playing excellent defense. This is a big game with New York’s surprising 2-0 start. As a result, this line opened at Giants -3 before it got steamed down to Giants -1.5.

This is a very sharp line, as both teams aren’t exactly who we thought they were so there’s an element of unknown. The total is one of the lowest of the week at 39.5 at most of the top online sportsbooks

Giants Finding Ways to Win 

It hasn’t been pretty, but the Giants are 2-0 for the first time since 2016. Although that’s reason to be optimistic, their opponents are 0-4 to start so we can’t get carried away either.

Daniel Jones is always a source of concern in New York and after two weeks, it doesn’t look like that’s going to change any time soon.

There was a play-specific play this past week where Jones made one of the worst throws you will ever see. The type of throw that should have been intercepted. The kind of pass that a starting-caliber NFL quarterback can’t ever make. 

As long as that element of his game exists to go along with his fumbling issues (38 fumbles in 40 career games), the Giants will always be an inconsistent team. For now, they’ve got their wins behind solid defense and some good special team plays.

I think this is a true coin-flip game, and if I were to play the spread, I’d have to go with Dallas at +3 which was the opening line. Now that it has moved down to +1.5, my official look for this game will be on the total.

Cowboys vs. Giants: Our Final Verdict

An NFL total under 40 is really low, but in this specific matchup makes perfect sense. The Bengals underestimated Cooper Rush last week and he was able to capitalize off of that.

To give Rush some credit here, he went 3-3 on the Cowboys final drive to set up the game-winning field goal, so the Giants would be wise not to make the same mistake

On the flip side, don’t expect Jones to have a lot of time in the pocket with Dallas’ one man wrecking crew that goes by the name of Micah Parsons. It seems like the Cowboys are starting to figure out that playing Parsons anywhere except edge rusher is a crime

Previously, he has split his time between being an off-the-ball linebacker and a straight-up pass rusher. In Week 1, he had 20 snaps as a linebacker, in Week 2 he only had 3 which seems about right. At the moment, he is the most unstoppable player in the league, and almost single handily wrecked the Bengals’ offense last week

Betting Pick: Under 39.5 Is the Play Here

I think both teams look to limit the number of times their quarterback drops back to pass and uses the run game to take advantage of play action.

Rush looked good last week, but the Giants like to blitz a lot and I don’t see Dallas putting him in harm’s way.

I think we have an old-school type game that is going to be won at the line of scrimmage instead of on the back of brilliant play by skill position players. 

NFL Pick: Under 39.5 (-110) at BetMGM