NFL Week 7 Betting: Odds, Spreads, Picks, Predictions for Lions vs. Cowboys

Matchups Week 7: Lions vs. Cowboys

Detroit Lions (1-4) at Dallas Cowboys (4-2)

Opening Spread: Cowboys -7

Opening Game Total: 47.5

Opening Team Totals: Cowboys (27.25), Lions (20.25)

Weather: Indoors

The Line Report

  • This line opened as Cowboys -7.
  • This line has moved down to Cowboys -6.5
  • DraftKings Pick’Em has the Cowboys -7.5.
  • Circa Sports Millions Pro Football Contest has the Cowboys -7.
  • This total opened at 47.5 points.
  • This total has remained at 47.5 points.

Notable Injuries

Cowboys: Out: LT Tyron Smith.

Lions: Questionable: RB D’Andre Swift, FB Jason Cabinda, WR DJ Chark (seems more like out), WR Josh Reynolds, C Frank Ragnow, Edge Charles Harris, CB Will Harris.

The Cowboys Offense vs. Lions Defense

The Cowboys’ offensive line was a liability on opening day, but it has massively improved since then. I’d even argue that no positional group has gotten better since opening day than the Cowboys’ offensive line. Dallas has a top-10-caliber offensive line despite being down left tackle Tyron Smith. Detroit has a bottom-tier front, giving Dallas an edge in the trenches.

Betting Notes Per TruMedia

  • The Cowboys are 4-2 against the spread this season.
  • The Cowboys are 2-4 on overs this season.
  • Dak Prescott is 48-35-3 against the spread in his career.
  • Dak Prescott is 41-45 on overs in his career.
  • Mike McCarthy is 134-104-5 against the spread in his career as an NFL head coach.
  • Mike McCarthy is 132-109-2 on overs in his career as an NFL head coach.

Cowboys Offense

  • The Cowboys are scoring 18.3 points per game, which is 23rd in the league.
  • Dallas is 28th in the league in yards passing per game and 16th in yards rushing.
  • With Dak Prescott back in the saddle, the Cowboys have a much higher ceiling on offense.
  • Per the Edge, among running backs Ezekiel Elliot is 20th in yards rushing per game while teammate Tony Pollard is 31st.
  • CeeDee Lamb leads the league with his 33.5% target share and his 39.1% air yards share is seventh.
  • Even with Cooper Rush at quarterback Michael Gallup maintained a high ADOT role (14), while his 32.8% air yards share is second on the team.
  • Noah Brown’s role in the offense has freefallen since Gallup returned.
  • Dalton Schultz is off the injury report, and he’s had a 15% target share this season.
  • Per TruMedia, Dalton Schultz has played 105 snaps as an in-line tight end, 18 on the perimeter, and 51 in the slot.
  • In general, we can reasonably expect Dallas to become a more pass-centric offense with Prescott. While volume is likely to increase for all Dallas pass-catchers to some degree, I’m not expecting much baseline role deviation (meaning Lamb will have the best role, Gallup will have a similar high ADOT type of role, etc.)

Lions Defense

  • The Lions have allowed 34 points per game, which is the worst in the league.
  • Per The Edge, the Lions have allowed the second-most yards rushing per game and the 24th-most yards receiving per game to running backs this season.
  • Detroit has given up the eighth-most yards receiving per game to wide receivers this year.
  • The Lions have allowed the sixth-most yards receiving per game to tight ends this season.
  • The Lions have allowed the fourth-most PPR points per game to in-line tight ends this season.

The Lions Offense vs. Cowboys Defense

This is a strength vs. strength matchup in the trenches. The Lions have a top-five-caliber offensive line while the Cowboys have a top-five pass rush. The Cowboys’ pass rush has derailed games against below average offensive lines. We saw them face an upper echelon one in the Eagles last week, where the Cowboys’ pass rush was much less of a factor. Micah Parsons is a unique player in the league and therefore a mismatch against just about anyone, but otherwise this trench matchup is a relative draw from a macro sense.

Betting Notes Per TruMedia

  • The Lions are 3-2 against the spread this season.
  • The Lions are 4-1 on overs this season.
  • Jared Goff is 46-40-2 against the spread in his career.
  • Jared Goff is 43-45 on overs in his career.
  • Dan Campbell is 18-16 against the spread in his career as an NFL head coach.
  • Dan Campbell is 16-18 on overs in his career as an NFL head coach.

Lions Offense

  • The Lions are scoring 28 points per game, good for third in the league.
  • Detroit is eighth in the league in yards passing per game and seventh in yards rushing.
  • Running backs D’Andre Swift and Jamaal Williams combine as one of the best running back duos in football.
  • Per the Edge, Amon-Ra St. Brown has already missed a game this season, but his 28.3% target share leads the team.
  • D.J. Chark leads the team with a 35% air yards share, but it sounds like he’ll likely miss this contest. That’s a significant blow, as his lid-lifting skill set is a great compliment to what St. Brown does.
  • Josh Reynolds has at least eight targets and 80 yards receiving in each of the last three games. Reynolds has been rock-solid while stepping up for Chark and St. Brown during that span.
  • Tight end T.J. Hockenson has a 19.3% target share with a 16.6% air yards share.
  • Per TruMedia, Amon-Ra St. Brown has played 71 snaps on the perimeter and 109 in the slot.
  • Josh Reynolds leads the Lions in perimeter snaps with 193, with an additional 78 in the slot.
  • Chark has played 128 snaps on the perimeter with just 28 in the slot.

Cowboys Defense

  • The Cowboys have allowed 16.3 points per game, which is third in the league.
  • Per The Edge, the Cowboys have allowed the 14th-most yards rushing per game and the 24th-most yards receiving per game to running backs this season.
  • Dallas has given up the 21st-most yards receiving per game to wide receivers this year.
  • Dallas has given up the ninth-most PPR points per game to perimeter wide receivers.
  • The Cowboys have allowed the 27th-most yards receiving per game to tight ends this season.

This is What You’re Betting On in Cowboys vs. Lions

This is a game you have to get right if you’re building DFS lineups or if you’re still alive in your survivor pool.

From a sports betting perspective, Dak Prescott is among my absolute favorite quarterbacks to bet on or against. He tends to shred below average opponents. More often than not, he underwhelms in big games or against difficult opponents. If Prescott never missed a game this season, I would absolutely love him against the worst defense in football. I still love his potential ceiling in this matchup, but Prescott is making his return coming off a multi-week injury to his throwing hand. An injury where he didn’t suit up against rival, undefeated Philadelphia last week in primetime. Our most recent parallel, Russell Wilson, came back a month early last season, and it took him several games to get back on track. The timetable on Prescott’s return is in line with expectations, so there’s a chance he’s fine. However, the potential for Prescott to come back a little rusty is an important variable to consider when betting on this game. I expect that is why Dallas is no longer a full seven-point home favorite.

If you’re betting on Dallas in this contest, you are betting on Prescott being fully operational coming off an injury to his throwing hand. Prescott’s ceiling is massive against Detroit’s bottom-tier defense. This is a plus matchup for every relevant Cowboys skill position player. One benefit that the Cowboys have is that they could lean on their running back duo of Ezekiel Elliot and Tony Pollard in a plus matchup. I expect Dallas to be more aggressive with Prescott than they were with Cooper Rush, but it would not surprise me if the Cowboys took a more balanced approach than many fantasy managers might like in Prescott’s return to action. Your biggest concern with a Dallas bet is that Detroit is a scrappy team with a high-performing offense itself. Even if Dallas comes out hot against the Lions like the Eagles did on opening day, Detroit’s offense makes it a dangerous backdoor cover opponent. If the Cowboys’ pass rush consistently beats Detroit’s top-tier offensive line, that’s the path to this game becoming a Cowboys’ rout.

A bet on the Lions is a bet on Detroit’s offense at least meeting expectations coming off its bye. The first thing you need there is Detroit’s offensive line mitigating Micah Parsons and the Cowboys’ pass rush. We saw the Eagles do this last Sunday night, but they were also at home. Jared Goff can produce significant offense if he’s given a quality supporting cast and he’s kept clean. Detroit has a top-five caliber offensive line, so it’s capable of holding up its end of the bargain. I’ve mentioned this in a few spots now, but I’d be much more enthusiastic about the Lions’ offense if D.J. Chark were trending towards playing. His lid-lifting ability is something any defense has to account for, and it pairs extremely well with the skill sets of Detroit’s other primary skill position players. Amon-Ra St. Brown, D’Andre Swift, Jamaal Williams, and T.J. Hockinson is still a pretty good group of skill players. Your biggest concern with a Lions bet is that Dallas just blows up Detroit’s league-worst defense.

Awards Market Ramifications: Micah Parsons is the Defensive Player of the Year favorite.

Winner/ Confidence Pool: I’m going to take Dallas in most of my winner pools, if not all of my winner pools. I will at least consider taking Detroit in one as a differentiator option. I am leaning towards not doing that as of Friday. I expect to be at least adjacent to consensus with Dallas in my confidence pool rankings.

Spread Pool: If D.J. Chark misses this contest as I expect, I’m less enthusiastic about taking the Lions against the spread. As it stands now, I’m either going to take Detroit or pass in tournaments.

Survivor Pool: Dallas is a viable pick in survivor pools in a week with a number of strong options in that format. Check this out if you want to see the Cowboys’ best survivor pool matchups going forward.

Ryan’s recent betting record:

ATS 2021: 49-31

ATS 2022: 21-9

Props 2022: 19-12

WATCH MORE: Why Chris Long Thinks Giants Are on Upset Alert vs. Jaguars


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