Cowboys Win-Total Pick
Was the 2016 season a fluke for the Dallas Cowboys, or will they be able to get back to success in 2017?
According to the oddsmakers at BetDSI, the Cowboys are listed with 10/1 odds to win Super Bowl LII next season while their odds to win the NFC Championship are set at 5/1. The over/under for wins for Dallas next season is listed at 9.5. The over has a line of -140, while the under is set at +110.
The Cowboys are coming off a 13-3 record in 2016 where they won the NFC East and had the top record in the NFC entering the playoffs. However, they lost to the Green Bay Packers in their first playoff game. Jason Garrett remains head coach for his eighth season in Dallas. He is 58-46 in his career with the Cowboys, including two playoff appearances. He has had just the two winning seasons.
The 2016 season was about the end of the Tony Romo era in Dallas and the start of the Dak Prescott era. The rookie from Texas A&M had an amazing 2016, throwing for 3,667 yards and 23 touchdowns with just four interceptions. Aiding the rookie was another rookie, Ezekiel Elliott. The Ohio State running back rushed for 1,631 yards and 15 touchdowns behind a solid offensive line. Dallas has a solid core of receivers to aid the young guys in the backfield as Dez Bryant, Cole Beasley and Terrance Williams all are capable of big games.
Defensively, Dallas could be looking to upgrade from 2016. The Cowboys allowed 19.1 points and 343.9 yards per game. Their run defense was the best in the league at 83.5 yards per game, but they gave up 260.4 yards per game through the air. Dallas really emphases the pass defense in the offseason, using their first three picks on D in the NFL Draft. They took pass rusher Taco Charlton from Michigan in the first round and took cornerbacks Chidobe Awuzie from Colorado and Jourdan Lewis from Michigan in the next two rounds. The team also added Nolan Carroll in free agency on a three-year, $10 million deal.
The Cowboys will have a tougher schedule this season after winning their division. They face tough road games in Denver, Arizona, Atlanta and Oakland aside from division road trips. They also will have to host Seattle, Kansas City and Green Bay this season. The talent is clearly there for Dallas, but I think we can see a sophomore slump for Prescott, and possibly for Zeke as well. Prescott played well within what Dallas needed. However, the Cowboys will need him to progress and it’s unclear if he can take that next step. If he can’t, it’s going to be hard for the Dallas defense to step up and make up for his regression. History doesn’t favor Jason Garrett here either. The Cowboys haven’t had back-to-back winning seasons under him.
NFL WIN-TOTAL PREDICTION: DALLAS COWBOYS UNDER 9.5 (+110)