The Cowboys travel to Kansas City on Sunday and go into the game as 3-point underdogs. The Vegas oddsmakers generally start with a base 3-point advantage for home teams in the NFL, so the current odds would suggest that on a neutral field, this game would be an even match. Below, we've summarized some expert predictions to find out who's favored to win on Sunday.
Whether or not those experts have any idea of what they are talking about remains to be seen, but here's a sampling of what they are predicting for Sunday's game:
Elliot Harrison, NFL.com
||If Miles Austin can repeat the results of his first career start -- 10 catches for two touchdowns and a franchise-record 250 yards in 2009 at Arrowhead Stadium -- then the Cowboys will be in good shape. Austin will probably be matched against Chiefs cornerback Sean Smith, which should be an advantage for a bruised -- if not battered -- Tony Romo. Dez Bryant, who isn't fully healthy, will be on the other side, where perhaps the most underappreciated corner in the game -- Brandon Flowers -- resides. Cowboys tackle Doug Free will have his hands full with Justin Houston; it should be interesting to see how the Dallas offense fares. Kansas City should be able to move the ball, but the Chiefs will need a better outing from Dwayne Bowe, as Dallas' defense > Jacksonville's defense. This should be one of the best games of Week 2|
Don Banks, SI.com
||The Cowboys are intent on creating and thriving on takeaways, but Alex Smith knows how to take care of the football. After years of playing the Cowboys twice a year in the NFC East, Kansas City's Andy Reid should have some useful insight. The Chiefs are much-improved, and while Dallas will push them in ways Jacksonville could only dream of, Kansas City is about to match its 2012 win total in Week 2, all while celebrating Reid's first home-opener in impressive victorious fashion.|
|Adam Teicher, ESPN||20-23||The Chiefs look like they're for real, at least defensively. They won't be as dominant as they were last week, but look for the Chiefs to win a close one.|
|Todd Archer, ESPNDallas||31-23||The last time the Cowboys visited Arrowhead Stadium, Miles Austin had a team-record 250 receiving yards and two touchdowns, including the game winner in overtime. He won't get 250 again, but he's the difference-maker with Tony Romo.|
Pete Prisco, CBS Sports
||23-20||Both won in Week 1, making this one of the week's best games. The Chiefs destroyed the Jaguars, but this is a big step up. The Cowboys did some good things in beating the Giants. I think Dallas gets Dez Bryant some big plays against the Chiefs man coverage. Cowboys get a tough road victory.|
|Peter Schrager, Foxsports||24-30||Tough not to think about Lamar Hunt any time a team from Dallas lands in Kansas City. I think he’d enjoy this one. Andy Reid’s no stranger to the Cowboys and the Arrowhead crowd will be all sorts of rocking. I like the Chiefs. Four days later? Andy goes up against his old team of 14 years.
|Greg Cote, Miami Herald||28-23||Betting line might seem odd but isn’t. Cowboys face letdown after prime-time beating Giants, and Chiefs get home-opening goose. Plus, Andy Reid was 17-12 vs. Dallas with Philly, which counts. So I get the line. I just hunch the ’Boys are going to turn it upside down, especially with Jamaal Charles banged up. Upset.|
|Vinny Iyer, Sporting News||23-20||Andy Reid will start feeling like he's back in the NFC East again, but before he returns to Philadelphia, his Chiefs, the former Dallas Texans, host the Cowboys. The Kansas City defense loves how their offense doesn't make mistakes, but that approach won't work against Tony Romo and the firepowered visitors. Look for Dallas to get Dez Bryant loose again, and also force the issue on Alex Smth for takeaways. Romo toughs it out again to help his mentally tougher team grind out a close one.|
|Arrowhead Pride||20-24||Kansas City demolished Jacksonville in a performance that made me feel like this. Dallas gave up 31 points to a team that treated the football as radioactive waste. In all seriousness, this is a very tough game to pick, but give me the better defense every time. The Chiefs may very well have the superior group on that side of the ball.
Ultimately, I believe in Justin Houston destroying Doug Free and Dontari Poe teaching Travis Frederick a few lessons on Sunday. The Cowboys are a formidable team, but the matchups fit the Chiefs well.
|What If Sports||29-24||So who wins this Great Plains battle? According to the award-winning WhatIfSports.com NFL simulation engine, the Cowboys come out on top 63 percent of the time by an average margin of 29-24.|
In addition to the selection of experts above who provide a rationale for their picks, many other experts don't provide any specific commentary, and are summarized in the table below:
|Pro Football Focus||4||4|
|Dallas Morning News||4||4|
|NFL Around The League||2||3|
|Inside the NFL||2||0|
Summing up all the predictions we've polled above, the Cowboys look like 33-44 underdogs. So what? Anything can happen in a non-conference game. Heck, anything can happen when the Cowboys play, period - they've not exactly been a model of consistency over the last few years, and the Chiefs even less.
(Published) public opinion slightly favors the Chiefs. What's your take on the game?
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