- The Cowboys are -5.5 against the Lions.
- Dallas has yet to record a straight up loss at home this season.
- Dak Prescott has historically struggled to cover against good teams.
Ahead of Week 17’s contest, I’m here to provide a pair of Cowboys vs. Lions predictions.
The Cowboys return home following two straight road games, where they lost against the Bills and Dolphins. In good news, Dallas has yet to lose at home this season.
As for Detroit, they clinched the NFC North division title last week thanks to a win over the Vikings. Now, all that’s left to play for is advantageous seeding in the playoffs.
Here’s a look at the NFL betting lines for Saturday’s game, as well as my bets for the contest.
Cowboys vs. Lions Betting Odds
- Dallas Cowboys Moneyline: -250
- Detroit Lions Moneyline: +200
- Game Spread: Dallas Cowboys -5.5
- Game Total: 53.5 Points
Cowboys vs. Lions Predictions
Detroit Lions Spread (+5.5) at Dallas Cowboys
Disclosure: I bet this earlier this week at +6.5, so it’s a lean at the current number.
This will undoubtedly close a public underdog come Sunday, but I think it’s the right side.
For his career, Dak Prescott has closed as a favorite 19 teams against non-divisional opponents with a winning record.
He’s covered in only six of those games.
The Cowboys offense should have their way against the Lions porous defense, but I think the Lions can keep up against an overrated Cowboys defense.
Since coming out of their bye in Week 8, Dallas is 15th in EPA per play, 12th in dropback EPA per play and 21st in dropback success rate.
That’s going to put them in trouble against the Lions, who sit fourth, eighth and fourth in the corresponding offensive categories over that span.
Plus, Detroit is averaging 31.8 points per game in games played indoors this season. In five outdoor games, they’ve scored only 18.8 points per game.
It’s also a chance to sell high on the Cowboys defense at home, which has surrendered the third-fewest home points per game.
However, they’ve faced only three top-10 offenses by offensive DVOA, surrendering 20 points in two of those three games.
Given the Lions are the best offense they’ll have faced at home, expect Detroit to keep this game respectable.
Dak Prescott Longest Completion Over 38.5 Yards (-110)
Prescott has only cleared this number six times this season, but he should find success against a bad Detroit pass defense.
Since emerging from their bye week, the Lions defense has allowed five of seven opposing quarterbacks to clear this number, with six reaching 38 yards.
The underlying metrics are worrisome, too, as Detroit ranks 28th in dropback EPA per play, 29th in dropback success rate and 30th in yards per completion.
That will put them in trouble against the Cowboys offense, which averages the second-most passing yards per game at home.
Plus, dating back to Week 10, Dallas’ offense ranks second offensively in both dropback EPA per play and dropback success rate.
For those reasons, I’ll buy low on Prescott’s season-long record against this number and back Detroit’s defensive woes to continue.
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