Green Bay Packers @ Dallas Cowboys, AT&T Stadium, 4:40 p.m. EST. Jan 15, 2017
This game between the Green Bay Packers and Dallas Cowboys is not only the last game of the Divisional Round but it will likely be the most-watched game of the weekend. The Cowboys are "America's Team". Whether you agree with that nickname or not, the Cowboys are seemingly always in the spotlight and are seemingly criticized under a microscope. They have several big draws like Dak Prescott and Ezekiel Elliott. This rookie combo took the league by storm this year, and plenty of fans will be officially on the bandwagon come kickoff on Sunday. But with the good publicity comes the bad publicity, and the Cowboys are not one to shy away from that. From Jerry Jones' coy replies regarding Tony Romo in the regular season to Elliott's domestic violence allegations to Greg Hardy messy personal life, the Cowboys always find themselves in the news one way or another.
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If the Cowboys are the most loved/hated franchise in the NFL, I would put Green Bay in either the second or third spot (New England is right there with them). The Packers come with their fair share of controversy, but it's mostly football related. Their star QB has no problem telling reporters to "chill out/relax" and guarantee that his team will right the ship and run the table to not only sneak into the postseason but also win the division. Aaron Rodgers has the arrogance needed to pull off a stunt like that, but I also believe he did it with natural talent. The team has bought in and the morale has never been higher in the Packers' locker room. They have reeled off six straight victories, and if they can make it lucky No. 7 then they will be going back to the NFC Championship Game for the second time in three years.
This game is a contrast in styles, which is why it will be so appealing to the masses. The Cowboys are a run-first team led by two rookies, while the Packers love to throw the ball 50 times and are well versed in what it takes to win a playoff game. If there is only time to watch one full game this weekend, I would suggest clearing your schedule after 4 p.m. on Sunday.
I have keyed a few prop bets I expect to hit and make us some money.
All lines are courtesy of Sports Interaction
Green Bay by 6 or more +300
I am a big believer in momentum, and I think the Green Bay Packers have what it takes on both sides of the football to escape Dallas with a win and book their place in the NFC Championship game for a couple of reasons. The first reason being experience. Rodgers and Mike McCarthy have been around long enough to know what it kind of effort will be needed to win this playoff game. The offense and defense are littered with seasoned veterans that will be unfazed by the atmosphere and pressure of the moment.
The second reason I believe the Packers will prevail is because Rodgers is playing great football right now. He has tossed 18 touchdowns without a single interception over his last seven games. Last week, one of his four touchdown passes (I'm sure you remember) was his third Hail Mary toss in a year. Some QBs go their whole career without connecting on one of those prayers. Rodgers is great at many things, but his most utilized skill is extending the play and allowing his receivers to break contain. After five or six seconds of trying to stay with their man, cornerback and safety coverage tends to fall apart, thus allowing for the big play.
The Packers have scored 30 or more points in each of the past five games, and going up against a secondary that allows more than 225 passing yards per game, Rodgers and his high-flying receiving corps could be in for a big day.
Highest Scoring Half
Second Half +100
This prop bet is more of a vison bet on how I expect the game to play out.
We all know the Cowboys love to run the football, and I expect them to do just that early and often to get Prescott and Elliott into the game and get rid of any nerves they may have. The Cowboys will also do their best to win the time of possession battle so they can keep the Packers hot offense off the field. Typically, games with two evenly-matched teams tend to start off as a chess match, with each team playing conservative and mistake-free football. Obviously, both teams would love to go into the halftime break leading by a big margin, but that just won't happen. Both teams will be content with a tight score - maybe 10-10 or 14-10 - something along those lines. If that happens, I expect both teams to turn up the pressure on defense and get into the depths of their offensive play calling sheets to find some points. If the first half can stay between 21-24 points, the second half will soar over the number and it won't even be close.
First Half Team Points
Dallas Cowboys "Under" 13.5, +100
This prop bet is an extension of the prop bet above.
I don't want to reiterate the points of conservative call playing, nerves
and two rookies leading the way, so I am going to cut this paragraph short
and give you quick blurb on an extra prop bets that encompass the entire
How Many Road Teams Will Win This Weekend?
"Over" 1.5 road teams, +100
"Under" 1.5 road teams, -140
In my opinion, this prop focuses more on three games, rather than all four.
There is no chance in hell the Texans go into New England and beat the
Patriots, so that leaves us with Seattle, Green Bay and Pittsburgh. All
three teams are experienced squads with solid coaching. Two of the three
have high-powered offenses and the third (Seattle) has a quality defense.
At plus-money, with three usually solid teams, I can't help but take this
Pick: "Over" 1.5 away teams, +100 - Line from Bovada
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