When the Cowboys (4-1) travel to take on the Patriots (2-3) in the marquee matchup of NFL Week 6 in 2021 (4:25 p.m. ET, CBS), they will be looking for their first win against a Bill Belichick-coached version.
Dallas has been rolling offensively with Dak Prescott back healthy at quarterback and being well supported by Ezekiel Elliott and the running game. New England is trying to win with the defense and running game but has seen flashes from rookie QB Mac Jones to help.
The Patriots were able to hold down Tom Brady and the Buccaneers’ NFC offensive powerhouse a couple weeks ago at home, but they are still winless at Gillette Stadium. The Cowboys’ lone loss came to Brady at Tampa Bay in Week 1.
Here’s everything to know about betting on Cowboys vs. Patriots, including updated odds, trends and our prediction for the NFL Week 6 game.
NFL WEEK 6 PICKS: Against the spread | Straight up
Cowboys vs. Patriots odds
- Spread: Cowboys by 3.5
- Over/under: 51.5
- Moneyine: Cowboys -184, Patriots +154
The line was bigger in the Cowboys favor, up to a point, earlier in the week. Dallas comes in rolling, having ripped the Giants at home, while New England eked out a win at Houston. The total is rather high thinking the Patriots will put up some good production on the other side of Prescott.
(betting odds per FanDuel Sportsbook)
Cowboys vs. Patriots all-time series
The Cowboys lead the all-time action 7-6. That’s crazy given Dallas won the first seven meetings and is riding a six-game losing streak to New England in the Belichick era. Based on the AFC-NFC rotation, the teams play every four years. But it can be a much different story with no Brady.
Three trends to know
—A whopping 90 percent of bettors believe the Patriots will cover despite the shrinking number that’s creeping toward a pick ’em.
—Only 49 percent of bettors are going with the over in the game as they consider the Cowboys’ improved defense plus Belichick’s scheming vs. Prescott
—The Cowboys are 7-3 straight up and 8-2 against the spread in their past 10 games. They have helped push the total over seven times in that span. The Patriots are 4-6 SU and 4-6 ATS in their past 10 games. The total has gone over only twice in those games.
Three things to watch
Diggs and Parsons vs. Jones
Cowboys cornerback Trevon Diggs has been an interception machine early in the season. Their rookie linebacker Micah Parsons has been a versatile disruptor, too. Those are two guys Jones must recognize on every offensive snap. Either can capitalizing big-time on a big mistake from him.
Who will Belichick take away?
The Patriots have good tight end defense already, so that’s not good for Dalton Schultz. But then they must decide between Amari Cooper and CeeDee Lamb whom they can erase best at wide receiver with cornerback J.C. Jackson and others. Given the Patriots’ slot strength, it will be easier to contain the explosive Lamb, who’s still learning as a second-year route-runner.
“The Ezekiel Elliott and Tony Pollard Show”
The Cowboys have a premier rushing combination in a sleeker Zeke and a spry Pollard. Their offensive line is back on point and they are getting chunk runs playing off the passing game. The Patriots may not have the front seven personnel to contain a grinding and sometimes explosive rushing attack.
Stats that matter
79.4 and 172.8. The first number is what the Cowboys’ run defense is allowing yardage-wise on average per game, No. 5 in the NFL. The second is the average yards rushing the Cowboys’ offense has produced per game, No. 2 in the NFL behind only the Browns. As much as the Cowboys have fireworks in the passing game, the old-school elements of “stop the run” and “run the ball” are strong in their favor.
Cowboys vs. Patriots prediction
The Cowboys have the right elements to mess up the Patriots’ defense. They are versatile, multiple and adjustable based on the matchup and how a team plays them. They can go run-heavy or pass-happy and Prescott adds another element with his rushing to support Elliott when needed. Taking away one thing from Dallas hasn’t been enough for most opponents. The Cowboys’ defense also has been playing “closer” for Dan Quinn with Diggs and others, which won’t help Jones mount any kind of comeback.
Cowboys 27, Patriots 20