NFL odds: Cowboys, Lions face off in pivotal Monday night battle

36:42 | NFL
Pro Football Now: Week 16 NFL Preview
Thursday December 22nd, 2016

Two division leaders will clash on Monday Night Football when the Dallas Cowboys (12–2) host the Detroit Lions (9–4) as seven-point home favorites on the NFL lines at sportsbooks monitored by OddsShark.com.

The Cowboys and Lions have yet to clinch the NFC East and NFC North division titles, respectively, making this a crucial matchup for both teams with just two weeks left in the regular season.

However, the Cowboys have already clinched a playoff berth and still own the conference’s best record. They do though need a victory in Dallas to win the NFC East since they would lose a tiebreaker with the New York Giants (10-4) after getting swept in the season series.

The Lions face a similar fate but hold only a one-game lead over the Green Bay Packers (8–6), who could win the NFC North if both teams lose in Week 16 and they win the regular-season finale at Detroit due to the fact that Green Bay won the first meeting.

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Detroit is coming off a 17–6 loss to the Giants last week as four-point road underdogs, snapping the team’s five-game winning streak (4–1 against the spread.) The Lions have gone 3–1 ATS in the past four road meetings with Dallas, according to the OddsShark NFL Database, and they are also 5–2 SU and ATS in their last seven versus teams with winning records.

The teams have not met since the 2015 playoffs when Dallas edged Detroit 24–20 but failed to cover the spread as six-point home favorites.

Dallas will be playing in primetime for the fourth consecutive week and has struggled in the previous three. The Cowboys started the season by going 9-0-1 ATS, but have since failed to cover four games in a row.

The Cowboys held on for a 26–20 win over the Tampa Bay Buccaneers in the Week 15 Sunday night matchup, falling just short of covering as 6.5-point home favorites. It is also worth noting Dallas has gone 3-10-1 ATS in its last 14 home games against teams over the .500 mark despite winning six straight there overall.

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