NFL Odds: 2010 Dallas Cowboys Preview

By: Bob Harvey | Thursday, July 15, 2010
Miles Austin

Miles Austin led Dallas in 2009 with 1,320 yards receiving.

The Dallas Cowboys would seem to have all the pieces in place as they look for a return trip to the Super Bowl, and they’re getting lots of love early on from the books and NFL football bettors alike.

The Cowboys are 12/1 to win it all this season and listed at 6/1 to take the NFC crown. Dallas is plus 130 in the NFC East with a season win total that opened and remains at 10.

The Cowboys went 11-5 last season and finally won a playoff game, their first since 1996. They were 9-7 ATS and 10-6 to the ‘under,’ but with additional offensive firepower Dallas should improve on their 22.6 points per game average.

The Cowboys will need to if they hope to keep pace with the likes of the high scoring Saints and Vikings. Both of those teams averaged at least seven points per game more than the Cowboys did in '09.

Balancing act

The ‘Boys were one of the better-balanced NFL football offensive teams in the NFL. They were second in total yards (399.4), sixth in passing (267.9) and seventh in rushing (131.4). Tony Romo was third in the league in passing yards (4,483), and had 27 touchdowns and just nine interceptions. While he had has best statistical NFL football season, there are more than just a few Cowboys fans who still don’t view him as one of the elite QB’s in the game.

Miles Austin became the big-play weapon in the Cowboys arsenal with 81 receptions, 1,320 yards and 11 touchdowns. He’s also replaced Romo as the team’s most publicized player thanks to his relationship with reality television star Kim Kardashian.

Roy Williams, who had 38 catches and seven touchdowns, along with Patrick Crayton who had 37 grabs give Dallas solid options. However Crayton could be traded to open up a spot for rookie Dez Bryant from Oklahoma State. Bryant’s got game but he’s also got character issues (think Moss and Owens).

Still, owner Jerry Jones loves the guy and what Jerry wants, he gets.

Dallas has the best TE in the game in Jason Witten. The former Tennessee standout had 94 receptions last season for 1,030 yards and two touchdowns.

Marion Barber led the rushing attack with 932 yards and seven touchdowns. Felix Jones had a glossy 5.9 yards per carry while Tashard Choice averaged 5.1 per carry. All three backs are excellent receivers as well and combined for 60 receptions.

Dallas on Defense

Defensively Dallas was ninth overall in yards allowed (315.9). The Cowboys were ranked fourth against the run (90.5) but 20th against the pass (225.4). NFL football betting odds

DeMarcus Ware was the unquestioned leader of the Cowboys with 11 sacks and five forced fumbles in’09. Still, the Cowboys felt a need to freshen up the defense and to that end the majority of their draft picks came on that side of the ball.

The best of the bunch is Penn State’s Sean Lee who could become a starter sooner than later.

Circle the date

The Cowboys host New Orleans on Thanksgiving Day in a game that could be better than dinner itself. Dallas also has a trio of tough road games (Minnesota, Green Bay and Indianapolis) on the docket.

Dallas captured the NFC East and finally won a playoff game, but given the high profile nature of “America’s Team,” that’s not good enough. Jones won’t be happy until his team is back in the Super Bowl and in a conference that includes the Saints, Vikings and Packers that’s certainly not a given. This could also be Romo’s final chance to prove that he’s a big-game QB, with this year's biggest game of all in his own home stadium.

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