What’s the proper way to follow up your first loss of the season? Just do as we did last week and get back into the win column, which is exactly what Buccaneers-Cardinals (Over 46) was able to do for the column.
That victory was especially huge considering how fluky that aforementioned defeat was the week before (and I was certainly afraid of déjà vu once Ryan Fitzpatrick entered the game early…).
But, nonetheless, we’re trending back up. And I have my sights set on Week 7, so let’s move on to it.
Matt Zylbert’s 2017 NFL Over/Under Betting Record: 5-1, +390
Week 1: ARI/DET O48 (WIN)
Week 2: SF/SEA U42 (WIN)
Week 3: CIN/GB O44 (WIN)
Week 4: PHI/LAC O46 (WIN)
Week 5: JAC/PIT O42 (loss)
Week 6: TB/ARI O46 (WIN)
*Each bet graded as if it were to win 100 dollars/units
Dallas Cowboys at San Francisco 49ers
UNDER 48 (-110)
It’s been a cruel, unusual season for the San Francisco 49ers and their first-year head coach Kyle Shanahan. Since dropping the season opener 23-3 to the Panthers, they’ve lost five straight games—all by three points or less, which is the first time in NFL history that has ever happened. They’ll continue the search for their first victory of the campaign at home this weekend opposite an old friend.
Anyone who has followed football for a long time is aware of the rich history between the Dallas Cowboys and 49ers. Unfortunately, a meeting of the two storied franchises just doesn’t quite have the same magnitude in 2017. But that doesn’t mean it can’t be a profitable venture for bettors.
With the over/under line being as high as it is along with the spot both teams are in at the moment, this looks like an opportunity to roll with the under.
Typically, Dallas and its dangerous offense isn’t something you want to mess with concerning such a wager, especially since the ‘Boys enter this affair having scored 28 or more points in three straight. But remember that they’re also coming off their bye week, which could easily mess with their flow and momentum.
Aside from that, Dallas is about to tangle with one of the more underrated defensive units in the NFC. Yes, the Niners are technically giving up 24.3 points per game (23rd in the NFL), but some of that actually has to do with ex-starting quarterback Brian Hoyer and his many turnovers setting the opponent up with quality field position. In Week 7, though, Hoyer is opening the game on the bench for the first time this year.
Rookie C.J. Beathard will make his first career start, which is also something to strongly consider when panning out this under. The third-round draft pick made his first career appearance in relief of Hoyer last week, and while he wasn’t bad, he really wasn’t any good either. He completed 19 of 36 passes (52.8 percent) for 245 yards with one touchdown and an interception, and he added 19 yards on one run. His scrambling ability will be something to watch throughout the contest.
Remember, though, that came against the Redskins while they were trailing by a bunch, meaning it was more of a non-pressure situation. Fast forward one week later and Beathard is suddenly being thrust into action against the ferocious Cowboys. It will be on national television, no less, as it will be shown throughout the country as the only 4 p.m. ET game aired on FOX. Combine that with the resistance of a Dallas defense that has clearly been underachieving and overdue for success, and there’s a solid chance we get the low number from the San Francisco side that we desire.
It may also be helpful that second-year standout Ezekiel Elliott’s suspension is still up in the air. It allows him to play this week, which ensures that the Cowboys will proceed with their power running game that can lead to a lot of methodical drives, thus eating up a lot of clock in the process. The 49ers do not surrender big plays often, so if Dallas has to resort to slower time-consuming possessions, that could end up being a good thing for an under.
At the end of the day, it seems highly unlikely that San Francisco extends its streak of games decided by three points or less to six when factoring in the law of averages. As a result, there’s a good chance this ends up as a decisive contest. With the line as high as 47, that means we can escape (with a push) in the event of a 34-13/30-17 outcome. Having that in our favor, this looks like a solid under bet from this Sunday’s slate.