NFL Week 5 features a showdown between two NFC squads with big aspirations. The Dallas Cowboys will travel to California to take on the Los Angeles Rams, and both teams are hoping to challenge for the Super Bowl this season.
The Rams are obviously the defending champs, but they’ve had a slow start to the year. They’ve suffered embarrassing losses at the hands of the Bills and 49ers, and they narrowly escaped with a win over the Falcons. Overall, they’re just 2-2 through their first four games.
Meanwhile, the Cowboys have jumped out to a surprising 3-1 start. Their overall record isn’t that big of a shock – they won 12 games last year – but rather the fact that they’ve done it without Dak Prescott. He went down with an injury in Week 1, and Cooper Rush has picked up three victories in his stead. Prescott is getting close to a return, but it sounds as though Rush will be under center for at least one more week.
The Rams are currently listed as 5.5-point home favorites, but the spread isn’t the only way to attack this matchup. There are also a host of Cowboys vs. Rams player props to choose from.
Cowboys vs. Rams Player Props: Week 5
Let’s dive into three of my favorite Cowboys vs. Rams player props:
Cooper Rush Under 33.5 pass attempts (-110)
Even though the Cowboys are moderate underdogs in this spot, I expect this to be a pretty close game. The biggest reason why is their pass rush. The Cowboys have some outstanding edge rushers – Micah Parsons, DeMarcus Lawrence, and Dante Fowler Jr. – and they have been terrorizing opposing quarterbacks all season.
That doesn’t figure to change vs. the Rams. Their pass protection has been a major concern to start the year, particularly against strong pass-rush teams like the Bills and 49ers. They allowed seven sacks against both squads, and the Cowboys should be able to duplicate those numbers.
If their defense can keep this game competitive, there’s no reason for Rush to start airing it out. He’s attempted 31 passes or fewer in all three games this season, including just 27 last week vs. the Commanders. They would prefer to keep things balanced with Ezekiel Elliott and Tony Pollard on the ground, which should make life easier on their backup quarterback.
Where to bet: Cooper Rush Under 33.5 pass attempts | -110 on DraftKings Sportsbook
Ezekiel Elliott Over 46.5 rushing yards (-115)
Most of the talk around Elliott is that he is no longer one of the best running backs in football. In fact, he might not be the best running back on his own team. He’s averaged just 3.8 yards per carry through the first four weeks – the worst mark of his career – while Pollard has averaged 4.5. That’s not a new development either: Pollard averaged 1.3 more yards per attempt than Elliott last year as well.
Still, as much as NFL Twitter want might Pollard to take over the Cowboys’ backfield, NFL Twitter doesn’t make those decisions. Jerry Jones does, and Jones might be the biggest Zeke fan in all of football. He’s paying Elliott a tremendous amount of money, so as long as he’s calling the shots in Dallas, Zeke is going to get the football.
Elliott has carried the ball at least 15 times in each of the past three games, and he’s recorded at least 49 yards in all three contests. He may not be very effective against the Rams’ stout run defense – they rank third in Football Outsiders rush defense DVOA – but volume shouldn’t be an issue. As long as he gets his 15 carries, there’s no reason he shouldn’t be able to get to 46.5 yards.
Ultimately, this bet has nice correlation with the under on Rush’s pass attempts. If Zeke does get to his usual allotment of carries and yards, it likely means that Rush isn’t going to have to throw the ball more than usual. That makes these perfect wagers to consider in a same-game parlay.
Where to bet: Ezekiel Elliott Over 46.5 rushing yards | -115 on DraftKings Sportsbook
Cooper Kupp Over 94.5 receiving yards (-115)
Whenever Kupp’s receiving prop is under 95 yards, I’m going to be interested in backing the over. He had a quiet performance in Week 3 vs. the Cardinals, finishing with just four catches for 44 yards, but he’s racked up at least 108 receiving yards in his other three games. He also had at least 95 receiving yards in 15 of 17 regular season games last year, and he did it in two of four playoff games as well. Overall, Kupp has had at least 95 receiving yards in 20 of his past 25 games.
The Cowboys’ stellar pass rush means Kupp could be more active than usual. Kupp had 15 targets against the Bills in Week 1, and he had a ridiculous 19 targets last week vs. the 49ers. When Stafford is under pressure – like he was in both of those contests – he’s going to try to get the ball to No. 10.
Kupp should also be able to make some plays against the Cowboys’ secondary. Trevon Diggs can generate game-changing plays, but he’s not exactly a stalwart in coverage. Fellow corners Anthony Brown and Jourdan Lewis aren’t imposing either, with both ranking outside the top 50 in terms of Pro Football Focus coverage grade.
Kupp ranks first among wide receivers in terms of PFF grade, and I’m not sure there’s a secondary alive that can contain him. I’m going to continue to take the over on his receiving props until the sportsbooks adjust.
Where to bet: Cooper Kupp Over 94.5 receiving yards | -115 on BetMGM