Free NFL Football Picks Week 9 – Cowboys Look To Get Back On Track At Home Versus Slumping Vikings

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The Dallas Cowboys are back at .500 following an online sports betting loss to the Detroit Lions last Sunday. A home date with the Minnesota Vikings should help them get back in the NFL Football Picks win column. The Cowboys let another late lead get away from them in a 31-30 loss to the Lions in the second of back-to-back road games, but still own the best record in an NFC East division where they are the only team that isn’t below .500. Dallas’ only home loss came against the Denver Broncos back in week five, and now they have the opportunity to rebound against a Minnesota team that has lost three-straight and is just 1-6 on the season.

Free NFL Football Picks Week 9Minnesota Vikings @ Dallas Cowboys
Sunday November 3, 2013 – 1:00 PM ET
AT&T Stadium, Dallas, Texas
NFL Sports Betting Line: Dallas – 10.5

The Vikings have struggled to get much of anything going since a win over the Pittsburgh Steelers in week four, and the schedule won’t get any kinder with three of their next four on the road including three teams that made the playoffs last season. Minnesota is set to turn back to Christian Ponder thanks to an injury to Josh Freeman, although it would be hard for the team’s quarterback situation to get any worse this week.

Freeman completed just 20-of-53 pass attempts for 190 yards and an interception in last week’s loss to the New York Giants, and is likely to miss this game with a concussion. The team has all but cast aside Matt Cassel, so it’s likely that Ponder will find his way back under center this week. Ponder was replaced after throwing for just 836 and two touchdowns with five interceptions earlier in the year, but the team has little choice but to give him another shot. Running back Adrian Peterson has averaged 4.5 yards per carry despite opposing defenses consistently throwing eight or nine defenders in the box, and the best course may still be to continue to let him pound the rock against those fronts. For as terrible as the Vikings’ offense has looked, the defense has been just as bad and enters this week ranked 21st against the run and 29th against the pass.

The Cowboys will look to take full advantage of the holes in the Minnesota secondary, and for as much as the home fans love to criticize Tony Romo, perhaps this week will be a reminder of how lucky they are. Romo has thrown for 2,216 yards and 18 touchdowns to lead the eighth-ranked passing attack in the NFL, helping to carry an offense that hasn’t gotten much help from an inconsistent rushing attack. No defense has given up more yards through the air than Dallas, but there won’t be any excuse for failing to slow down Minnesota this week. The Cowboys have done a decent job against the run, but Monte Kiffin’s defense must find a way to keep the Vikings down in order to avoid another shootout.

For as bad as the Dallas defense has been at times this season, there will be no excuse this week against an awful Minnesota offense that has been forced to turn back to the starter they deemed wasn’t good enough when they traded for another below-average passer in Freeman. The Cowboys have the ability to put up points in bunches, and there is little reason to think the Vikings will be able to slow down Romo and company on the road this week. Dallas has been very inconsistent for some time now, but there is every reason to believe they will bounce back and cover the online betting number at home this Sunday afternoon.NFL Football Picks: Dallas Cowboys – 10.5.

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