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San Francisco 49ers vs. Dallas Cowboys Total Pick

Opening Line: 49ers -4.5
Over/Under: 51.5

Time: 4:25 PM EST Sunday September 7, 2014 on FOX

San Francisco 49ers (0-0) vs. Dallas Cowboys (0-0)

The 49ers have advanced to the NFC title game for 3 straight seasons with no Super Bowl rings to show for it. In their first game this season they are the betting favorite facing a Dallas team that has many issues on the defensive side of the ball and has finished 8-8 in the last 3 seasons.

Last season Dallas gave up the 3rd most yards per game in NFL history and 2 of their better players on that side of the ball in DeMarcus Ware and Jason Hatcher, who had a team-high 11 sacks last season, are now no longer with the team. The defensive issues are not good facing a 49ers’ offense that has averaged over 32 ppg in their last 3 season opening games.

Last season the Cowboys were 9-7 ATS and the 49ers were 12-4 ATS.

The 49ers had a great defense last season, but they are without some key players. LB Aldon Smith is suspended, DE Ray McDonald will likely be out for this game after his recent arrest, and NaVorro Bowman is out after his bad knee injury in last season’s conference title game.

While the Cowboys are the home underdog in this game Dallas QB Tony Romo is 2-0 in his career facing the 49ers where has passed for 686 yards with 5 TD and 0 INT, but has not faced them since the 2011 season.

The San Francisco pass defense ranked 7th in the NFL last season and they may have to play well in this game since the pass rush is missing some key players. Romo ranked 5th in the league last season in TD and he has 2 great targets in TE Jason Witten and WR Dez Bryant, who is coming off a 1,233 yards 12 TD season.

DeMarco Murray was finally healthy for an entire season last year and he produced rushing for 1,121 yards and 9 TD. He will be facing a stout SF run D that ranked 4th in the league last season.

Colin Kaepernick had to deal with some injuries to some key targets last season and while he had 21 TD passed and ran for 4 more he only ranked 31st in the league in completion percentage. WR Michael Crabtree and TE Vernon Davis are healthy and Kaepernick has a new weapon in ex Buffalo WR Stevie Johnson. Dallas pass rush lost 2 key players and their pass D only ranked 30th in the league last season so they may be in for a long night.

The Dallas run D was not much better ranking 27th and they face 49ers RB Frank Gore and a rushing offense that ranked 3rd in the NFL last season.

Betting Trends

The 49ers are 8-2 ATS in their last 10 road games, 7-3-1 ATS in their last 11 games in September, and they have an Under record of 5-2 in their last 7 road games.

The Cowboys are 6-13 ATS in their last 19 home games, 1-4 ATS in their last 5 games overall, and they have an Over record of 5-2 in their last 7 games.

The home team is 3-0-2 ATS in the last 5 games between these 2 teams.

Free NFL Prediction

The only way that Dallas is going to win a game this season is to put up a ton of points. The defense was atrocious last season and on paper appears to be worse than they were in 2013. The 49ers have been known to get out of the gun quickly scoring an average of 32.3 in their last 3 season openers. The Cowboys do catch a break facing a depleted 49ers defense that will be missing two starting LBs in Aldon Smith and NaVorro Bowman and may have to do without the services of DT Ray McDonald. The current total line is high, but we wouldn’t be surprised to see the total points in this game fall in the 60’s.

Take the OVER 51 -110

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