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Week 8 Spreads: Seattle vs. Dallas

NFL Handicapping: Seahawks vs Cowboys

Sunday, November 1st – Cowboys Stadium – Dallas, TX

NFL Point Spread: Cowboys -9.5, O/U: 46

These are two teams headed in opposite directions. Seattle briefly held out hope for its season after throttling Jacksonville, 41-0, on Oct. 11, but coach Jim Mora’s club was brought to earth a week later, in a 27-3 loss at the hands of NFC West-leading Arizona.


Quarterback Matt Hasselbeck was sacked five times, and the Cardinals held the ball for just over 42 minutes. In Dallas, things are different. The Cowboys, sluggish in September, are finding a midseason groove thanks to receiver Miles Austin, who caught 6 passes for 171 yards in a 37-21 thumping of a good Atlanta team. Major moneyman DeMarcus Ware – recently given a fat new contract – sacked Falcon quarterback Matt Ryan twice and forced a fumble to lead the Cowboys’ defense.

NFL Handicapping: What The Seahawks Have To Do To Win

Keep Matt Hasselbeck from getting pounded. It was an ugly sight on Oct. 18, as Arizona’s front seven repeatedly hit the Seahawks’ signal caller on a day when All-Pro left tackle Walter Jones had to watch from the sideline. Dallas’s pass rush represents the most imposing part of its defense, so unless a patchwork Seattle line can rally this Sunday, Hasselbeck could get injured, and effectively end Seattle’s season. Jim Mora and his staff must find ways to move the ball without putting Hasselbeck at risk. Short-range routes and quick hitch patterns should be seen in abundance, but those kinds of pass plays will need to set up the occasional long ball, and when Hasselbeck throws one, he needs to hit it. The Seahawks must score big in order to have a decent chance, which only makes pass protection even more of a priority. [soliloquy id=”82219″]

NFL Handicapping: What The Cowboys Have To Do To Win

Don’t change a thing. Dallas looked like a 7-9 team for the first five weeks of the year, but in October, the team used an overtime escape at Kansas City to find a new level of confidence and consistency. Miles Austin has spurred this Cowboy surge with his dynamic playmaking on the perimeter. Quarterback Tony Romo can now spread the ball around even more, now that he has a favorite new target. DeMarcus Ware and the rest of coach Wade Phillips’ defense are getting after opposing quarterbacks and hawking the ball, exactly what an upper-tier NFL defense should be doing. If the Cowboys play an unspectacular but steady, high-percentage game with a relatively small number of mistakes, it’s going to be very hard for the banged-up Seahawks to keep pace with them at Jerry World’s big pleasure palace.

NFL Handicapping: Outlook & Pick

The Seahawks are hurting. They’re on the road. They’re going up against a fierce pass rush. Dallas is on a roll. You do the math. The only tricky part of this prediction is the over-under. If Dallas runs wild, the number could go over, even if Seattle is held to a fairly low score. Think 38-10. Ultimately, stick with the under if you have to. Dallas, 31-13.

NFL Point Spread Pick: Cowboys -9.5 & under 46

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  1. I’ll give that the Cowboys looked good last week against the Falcons, but remember that was one game. If they go out and throttle the Seahawks then maybe they are a legitimate playoff team, but until they show a couple of weeks of consistent play, I’m not buying it.