Bengals, Cowboys Looking To Stay In NFL Playoff Picture

By: Willie Bee | Thursday, December 6, 2012

Dallas Cowboys at Cincinnati Bengals
NFL Betting Preview
12/09/2012 at 1:00 p.m. (ET)
Opening Lines: Bengals -3, O/U 45½
(click for latest NFL odds)
Television: FOX

Dallas Cowboys: Still a solid fade against the NFL odds, the Cowboys (6-6 straight-up, 4-8 against the spread) have nonetheless climbed back into the NFC East title hunt with three wins in their last four games. The latest came this past Sunday against the Eagles, who have been the victims in two of Dallas' three wins in the last month. Quarterback Tony Romo helped rally the 'Boys with two touchdown passes in a 21-point fourth quarter to help them to a 38-33 win as 10½-point home favorites. It was the third straight contest that Dallas failed to cover the spread and fifth in the last six games. The Cowboys rank eighth in the league in total offense (379.1 yards per game) and a middling 15th in scoring (23.3 ppg) while the defensive unit is 11th and 21st in those two columns. Dallas won the most recent meeting with the Bengals in 2008, a 31-22 decision in the Lone Star State as 16-point chalk.

Cincinnati Bengals: A fourth consecutive win has the Bengals (7-5 SU, 6-5-1 ATS) tied with Pittsburgh for second in the AFC North, two games behind the front-running Baltimore Ravens. Cincinnati overcame three turnovers in San Diego last week and rallied back with 10 fourth-quarter points to slip past the Chargers, 20-13. The victory also marked the Bengals' fourth straight cover and fourth consecutive "under." Defense has been a big factor during the winning streak, allowing just 42 points (10.5 points per game) during the stretch compared to the team's season average of 21.7 ppg. The stop unit ranks eighth overall (331.3 ypg) and 11th in both passing (221.5 ypg) and rushing (110.3 ypg). Six of the last eight meetings between Dallas and Cincinnati have exceeded the total, but "under" trends are heavy for this year's clash. Seven of the last nine road games for the Cowboys have fallen short of the total while four of the Bengals' last five at home have finished below the mark.

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