2007 Season NFL Football Past Picks
August 25, 2007
Dallas at Houston
Saturday 08/25 12:00 AM Eastern
3 units on Dallas PICK () (risk 3 to return 3) RESULT: LOSS
Wade Phillips has brought something to the Dallas Cowboys this preseason. It is the first time the Cowpokes have opened by scoring 20+ in both of the first two preseason games. Phillips has always put value on winning in the preseason. He's now 14-9 in these games in his head coaching career. In Dallas, he appears to want to put his less-than-stellar head coaching past behind him. He wants the players, fans and outspoken owner to like and support him and to be excited for the preseason. He wants to win. Heck, the Denver Broncos whined about it after last week's game saying that Dallas blitzed too much. John Lynch accused Phillips and the Cowboys of "breaking the code of ethics of the preseason." What?!? John, we love you but calling out an opponent for playing hard instead of laying back just makes you look petty. The main point here, though, is that Dallas is bringing it, even in the preseason. Those two back-to-back high-scoring wins got us wondering. What do teams do in their third game in such a situation? Of course we checked. It turns out that when teams score 20+ in the first two NFL preseason games, they win and cover 65% of the time in game three! These teams have shown in two games that they are trying to score and trying to win. Marion Barber has received double digit carries in both games and Tyson Thompson and Julius Jones are running a lot and running hard. Thompson's good performances have been a big surprise so all three are working hard for regular season carries. The Cowboys also fit into another explosive third week system that features winning road teams coming off a home game that is good for a 39-15 (73%) mark. We aren't much for playing into the teeth of a home dog, as they usually do some barking in the preseason. But, Dallas fits a system that is completely opposite of that trend. Certain road favorites playing well are 10-2 ATS in week three and Dallas qualifies this week. We have seen a mindset in Dallas in the first two games - one of playing hard and playing to win. Their talent is certainly much better than Houston's too. Week 3 games see more play from starters than any preseason game so we should see the talent make a difference here. Dallas is now 19-6 ATS in their last 25 preseason games and we'll take them get to 3-0 this season.