The Dallas Cowboys (1-2) host the Detroit Lions (1-2) on Sunday morning in a battle between two teams attempting to get back to .500 on the season. Kickoff is set for 1:00 PM EST on Sunday, September 30th at AT & T Stadium. The game will be televised on FOX.
Oddsmakers opened this game up with the Cowboys listed as as 3-point home favorites. That line has remained unchanged, as Dallas is currently available at -3. The total for this matchup is 43.5 points. Click here for a full look at the Week 4 NFL odds and for more links to our individual game previews.
Cowboys vs Lions Vegas Odds & Game Preview
Detroit managed to avoid an 0-2 start to their season after an impressive 26-10 victory over the New England Patriots in Week 3. The Lions dominated the Pats on both sides of the ball, especially defensively where they managed to hold Tom Brady to just 133 yards passing and one touchdown. QB Matthew Stafford played extremely well, throwing for 262 yards and two touchdowns. Stafford has passed for 895 yards and six touchdowns on the season so far, although he has thrown five interceptions as well. Golden Tate and Kenny Golladay have led the way for the receiving corps, combining for over 500 yards and two touchdowns in three games. As a whole, the Lions are currently averaging 23.3 points per game on 393.3 total yards.
With the exception of their Week 1 performance against the Jets, Detroit has played quite well defensively over the first few weeks of the season, allowing opponents to average 301.3 total yards per game. They also currently own the best defense against the pass in the NFL, limiting opponents to just 152 yards per game through the air.
Dallas dropped to 1-2 on the season last weekend after getting beaten 24-13 at home by the Seattle Seahawks. QB Dak Prescott struggled to find any rhythm all game long, only managing to throw for 168 yards and one touchdown. Prescott also threw two interceptions against Seattle, lowering his quarterback rating to an embarrassing 33.7 – he also has yet to pass for more than 170 yards in any of his starts this year. Dallas is ranked almost dead last in the NFL in terms of passing offense, averaging just 145 passing yards per game. RB Ezekiel Elliot has been hot and cold, rushing for almost 300 yards over his first three games. Elliot broke the 100-yard mark against the Seahawks, but also took a costly penalty that negated a touchdown and lost a fumble.
The Cowboys have looked much better on the other side of the ball, limiting opponents to an average of just 17.7 points per game (7th) on 281 total yards (3rd). Dallas has certainly excelled against the pass, as they are currently giving up just 182.7 yards per game through the air (4th).
Free NFL Betting Prediction: Lions +3
Apart from having to play on the road this weekend, I am unsure why Detroit is the underdog in this spot. They have clearly rebounded from their dismal Week 1 performance, barely losing to San Francisco on the road before dominating New England last weekend. Stafford has settled in nicely and has found a ton of chemistry with his receivers, especially Kenny Golladay. Dallas, on the other hand, looks completely lost and is averaging just 13.3 points a game. Yes, they have been fairly solid defensively but I don’t think they can win this game unless they score more than 20 points, something they haven’t managed to do yet this year.
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Detroit is 4-0 ATS over their last four games against opponents from the NFC and 6-1-1 ATS in their last eight games against opponents with a losing record. They are also 4-1 ATS over their last five games in Week 4 and 5-2 ATS in their last seven games overall. Dallas is just 2-7 ATS over their last nine games in Week 4 and 12-25-1 ATS over their last 38 games on fieldturf.
I am fully expecting the Lions to win this game outright – the extra points are just a bonus. Dallas has not shown anything offensively this year that makes me have any faith in them to keep pace with a Detroit offense that is really clicking. Stafford and Co. have now scored 25+ points in consecutive games against solid opponents while the Cowboys have scored fewer than 15 points in two out of their three games. Lions rookie RB Kerryon Johnson looks to have finally found his groove as well, rushing for more than 100 yards on the ground in a game for the first time in his young career. Detroit should have a ton of confidence after their victory of the defending AFC Champions last weekend and I think they will keep things rolling on Sunday. I’ll take the road underdog and the free field goal.