Dallas Cowboys at Detroit Lions (-3, 51)
The Dallas Cowboys are riding a two-game winning streak and starting to put up some impressive defensive numbers to go along with Tony Romo and the offense. That passing defense will get a workout on Sunday when the Cowboys visit Matthew Stafford, Calvin Johnson and the Detroit Lions. The Lions are sixth in the NFL in passing at an average of 304.1 yards but are giving up nearly as many yards in the secondary.
Dallas’ defense got a wake-up call in a 51-48 loss to the Denver Broncos on Oct. 6 and has been a different unit since, holding its last two opponents to a total of 19 points. The Cowboys are beginning their defensive turnaround without a few big names on the line and could be without end DeMarcus Ware (strained right quad) for a second straight game on Sunday. Detroit dropped two of its last three games and suffered its first home loss against Cincinnati last week.
TV: 1 p.m. ET, FOX.
LINE: The Lions opened as 3-point home faves. The total opened 51.
ABOUT THE COWBOYS (4-3): Romo is tied with Stafford and Philip Rivers for second in the NFL with 15 TD passes and wide receiver Dez Bryant is making noise like he wants to be mentioned in the same conversation with Johnson as the best receiver in the league. Romo and Bryant hooked up for 110 yards in a 17-3 road victory over the Philadelphia Eagles last week but were the secondary story behind the defense. With Ware sitting out the contest, Dallas still forced three turnovers and recorded three sacks in a dominating performance.
ABOUT THE LIONS (4-3): Detroit started out 3-1 with two victories within the NFC North but could not get over the hump against playoff contenders Green Bay and Cincinnati in two of the last three weeks. Stafford passed for 357 yards and three touchdowns last week against the Bengals, but Reggie Bush was held to 50 yards on 20 carries and the defense could not get the stop it needed on Cincinnati’s final drive. The bright spot was Johnson, who has been hampered by knee issues but broke out for 155 yards and a pair of TD catches.
* Over is 4-0 in the last four meetings.
* Cowboys are 6-1 ATS in their last seven games overall.
* Over is 4-0 in Lions last four home games.
* Lions are 11-4 ATS in their last 15 games in October.
1. Johnson (knee) sat out practice on Wednesday but was back Thursday and is listed as questionable.
2. Cowboys WR Miles Austin (hamstring) has been limited in practice and is questionable.
3. Dallas RB DeMarco Murray (knee ligament sprain) missed last week but returned to practice on Wednesday.