Ladies and gentlemen, your NFC North Division champion Detroit Lions.
After topping the Minnesota Vikings 30-24, the Lions now head to Dallas for a nationally televised showdown against the Dallas Cowboys Saturday night.
With a record of 11-4, the Lions are currently third in the NFC. But it is not out of the question for the Lions to get the No. 1 or No. 2 seed.
To do so, winning in Dallas — and then again at home in Week 18 against the same Vikings — would be of paramount importance.
As for the 49ers? They head to D.C. to take on the Commanders Sunday before finishing at home against the all-of-a-sudden very dangerous Los Angeles Rams.
The Eagles have the easiest path, playing at home against the Arizona Cardinals and then in East Rutherford, New Jersey versus the New York Giants.
So while that very important first-round bye will be difficult to come by, it’s certainly worth thinking about. And due to the quirks of the tie-breaking procedures, if the Lions and 49ers win out, the Lions are the No. 2 seed.
In the meantime, Michigan online sportsbooks are expecting a barnburner Saturday, with the total set at 52 (-110 at Caesars). The home Cowboys are favored by 5.5 points everywhere except FanDuel, where the spread is 4.5 points.
On the moneyline, the Lions can be had for +205 at Caesars.
On the player prop front, a solid idea seems to be exactly what was recommended in this space last week: betting the anytime touchdown props for both David Montgomery and Jahmyr Gibbs. Montgomery is +125 at FanDuel, Gibbs is +138 at Caesars, and there has been only one time this year — injury or not — that neither of them found the end zone. If one gets in, it’s a profitable endeavor.
The Cowboys defense is strong, and when they put a team in passing situations with their blitz — which they do at a 30.7% rate — opposing quarterbacks need to get rid of the ball quickly.
That plays right into the hands of Amon-Ra St. Brown. While his yardage total is a little high — best odds are -120 at 77.5 yards at BetMGM, or 81.5 yards at -110 at FanDuel — his total reception prop, set at 6.5 at -125 at DraftKings, looks attainable.
Sam LaPorta also looks primed to have success against Dallas, per Graham Barfield at Fantasy Points.
LaPorta’s reception prop is set at 4.5 at -130 on the over at FanDuel, and his receiving yardage number is at 50.5 at -114 at the same sportsbook.
Of course, the Lions would prefer to just run the ball successfully, something teams have been able to do — at times — against the Cowboys.
With that in mind, Montgomery’s rushing yards prop is set at 55.5 at -114 at FanDuel, Gibbs at 48.5 at -120 at BetMGM.
The game kicks off at 8:15 p.m. Saturday, broadcast on ABC and ESPN.
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