Tennessee Titans vs. Dallas Cowboys Point Spread – Pick

Tennessee Titans (3-4 SU, 4-3 ATS) vs. Dallas Cowboys (3-4 SU, 3-4 ATS)
Week 9 NFL
Date/Time: Monday Night Football, November 5, 2018 at 8:15PM EST
Where: AT&T Stadium, Arlington, Texas

By Loot, NFL Football Handicapper, Lootmeister.com

Point Spread: TEN +6/DAL -6
Over/Under Total: 42

The Tennessee Titans come to AT&T Stadium to take on the Dallas Cowboys on Monday Night Football in week 9. Both teams sit at 3-4, looking to push it to .500 this week. Each team should benefit from coming off the bye, as injuries have hurt each squad so far in 2018. This game is important, as 4-4 is a ton better than 3-5. It’s a fork-in-the-road game and we should see an effort that follows suit. Let’s see what we can come up with in this MNF Titans vs. Cowboys preview.

Each team’s path to a 3-4 record has been different. Dallas has alternated wins and losses each week since losing to Carolina in week one. They have lost to the Panthers, Seahawks, Texans, and in their last game to the Redskins. The last two losses were by a FG. They have lost every game on the road and won all their home games—against the Giants, Lions, and Jaguars. Tennessee’s road to this spot has been streakier. They lost in week one to the Dolphins, before peeling off three straight wins against Houston, Jacksonville, and Philly. But three straight losses to the Bills, Ravens, and Chargers have them trying to regroup heading into week 9. In their last game, they scored the improbable late TD in a comeback against the Chargers, when they went for the win with a failed two-point conversion—a tough pill to swallow heading into the bye-week.

Dallas is hoping some off-field maneuvering helps solve what has been a moribund offense. QB Dak Prescott has seen the vitality of his offense diminish the last few seasons—not entirely all his fault, though his form has slipped some. Only twice this season have they scored over 20 points, with their aerial attack still in the dumps. They traded a first-round pick to get Oakland wide receiver Amari Cooper and whether he’ll be ready to hit the ground running is one thing, but he should help a receiving crew that lacks a star.


Still, the Dallas offense looks little like the group of several seasons ago. Ezekiel Elliott is still a handful and puts up the numbers, but is more of a hit-and-miss proposition thus far in 2018. And while Cole Beasley is a nice complimentary receiver, most of what they have aerially are just role guys like Allen Hurns, Michael Gallup, Tavon Austin (questionable), etc. Their run-game is still vital overall, but the offense is a one-dimensional group. The line helps open up holes for the ground-game, but hasn’t been keeping Prescott out of trouble and is not what they once were, either.

Opposing offenses have scored an average of just 16.6 points per game against the Dallas defense thus far. Only one team has given up fewer points in the league this season. It’s been a shining light of the team and the reason they are still at least vaguely in this with 9 games left. The front has been good, with Demarcus Lawrence still a major pass-rushing factor. In the middle, they are growing in power and a healthier Sean Lee makes this whole “D” infinitely better. Rookie Leighton Vander-Esch is a growing force at linebacker, with Jaylon Smith chipping in, as well, adding a pass-rush element in the middle. It has helped the pass-defense, with the secondary ranked 6th in the league. Hopefully the bye week helped them on the injury-front, with Vander-Esch and Randy Gregory questionable, with the offense also seeing if emergent TE Geoff Swain, G Zack Martin, Austin, or Cooper will be available.

On one hand, the 3-4 Titans haven’t been that bad lately, with two of their last three losses both being one-point defeats. So they’ve been right there in the mix, just unable to get it done. Their offense has been problematic, with only 31 total points in their last three games. No one on the team has more than one TD—a pretty unflattering portrayal. Aerially, in particular, they have been quite impotent. Like their opponent, their defense has been their saving-grace, as they are third in points allowed, while being quite robust against opposing passing-attacks.

Marcus Mariota has three TDs on the season against five picks, so there isn’t a ton of laudatory things you can say about his 2018 form thus far. Sure, he has other weapons with his legs, but it’s been a rough season through 7 games. Corey Davis is a nice young receiver, but his menace isn’t unveiled all that consistently. The same goes for Tajae Sharpe, Taywan Taylor, and others. Dion Lewis is doing what he did for New England, making an impact on the ground and through the air. And while Derrick Henry is a useful weapon, he has left something to be desired as a lead back. And it’s not helping that the line has been subpar over the last month.

There are some good foundational pieces upon which to build on the Tennessee defense. Their secondary still has the same playmaking flair, but with more rigidness this season. All in all, Kevin Byard, Adoree Jackson, Logan Ryan, and others have been quietly effective, despite losing some key manpower to injuries. Wesley Woodyard and Brian Orakpo are nice in the middle and still difference-makers on this defense. The front hasn’t been terribly-impactful and they have taken a step back in terms of pass-rush and run-defense.

This game has a lot of variables. One could feel pretty good about their pick, while also knowing that no result would really be much of a surprise. We see two teams, neither of whom has been able to establish much of an identity. Both teams have been wishy-washy and a clear level beneath what would be considered even a darkhorse contender. With the bye comes a renewal of spirit and we’ll see who can get on a second-half run. Both teams have a lot in common—stronger running offenses, while playing pretty good defense. And in terms of running the ball, a rested Ezekiel Elliott, bolstered by an improved passing-game, might be the most-compelling weapon on the field. I’m taking the Cowboys.

Loot’s Prediction to Cover the Point Spread: I’m betting on the Dallas Cowboys minus 6 points. Did you know that you could be wagering on the Tennessee vs. Dallas MNF game at discounted odds? There’s a better than good chance that you’re laying -110 odds (or more) with your book. Stop overpaying TODAY by making the switch to BetAnySports Sportsbook! You will be so glad that you did!

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