Some teams sit out starting quarterbacks in their NFL preseason openers, but the San Francisco 49ers won’t be one of them this year as they prepare to host the Dallas Cowboys on Thursday as 3.5-point home favorites at sportsbooks monitored by OddsShark.com.
After going a perfect 5-0 in his starts for the 49ers during the 2017 regular season, Jimmy Garoppolo is slated to play at least one series on Thursday against the Cowboys.
San Francisco’s second-year head coach Kyle Shanahan went 2-2 straight up and 3-1 against the spread in the preseason a year ago, and that was without the former New England Patriot Garoppolo, who was dealt to the team in a midseason trade. Instead, Shanahan relied on other signal-callers like C.J. Beathard, Brian Hoyer and Matt Barkley. Hoyer was cut later in the regular season when the 49ers acquired Garoppolo.
On the other side, Dallas head coach Jason Garrett might be on the hot seat, and he posted only his second winning preseason last year with a 3-1 mark SU (1-2-1 ATS). With the Cowboys reportedly struggling to get the ball downfield in training camp, bettors should expect to see their quarterback Dak Prescott as well. Of course Prescott rose to prominence during the preseason two years ago in taking over as the starter.
Eleven more games will kick off Week 1 of the NFL preseason on Thursday with two more on Friday and two on Saturday. Garoppolo’s old team – the Patriots – will host the Washington Redskins as 3-point home favorites on the NFL preseason odds, with the starting quarterbacks also in the spotlight at Gillette Stadium.
Washington lost Kirk Cousins as a free agent and traded for veteran Alex Smith in the offseason, while 41-year-old future Hall of Famer Tom Brady is still a mainstay in New England. The question is, will either play?
Regardless, Redskins head coach Jay Gruden is 11-5 straight up and 10-6 against the spread in four years of preseason games. Meanwhile, Gruden’s counterpart Bill Belichick is 40-34 SU for the Patriots in the preseason, including 12-7 in the first week. But Belichick’s team went 0-4 ATS last year en route to his first losing preseason (1-3 SU) since 2012 before making a second straight Super Bowl appearance.