A very tasty double header in the opening round of the NFL 2023 Playoffs on Sunday begins in Texas where the NFC East winners Dallas Cowboys go up against the Green Bay Packers in a high profile wildcard clash.
The Cowboys are perfect at home this season which will give them a lot of belief here but the Packers have improved in the second half of the campaign and will fancy their chances of reaching next week.
The Dallas Cowboys lasted home in front in the NFC East and while they were worthy winners of the division they were helped by an absolute collapse at the death of the season by the Philadelphia Eagles. Still, that is none of their business and when the chance comes you have to take advantage of it and they did. Their division success was built on a perfect home record and they will be hoping they have at least one more home win before they are done this season.
We all know about the Dallas pass rush getting the opposing quarterback under pressure with Micah Parsons still one of the best in the game in that discipline but it has been their offense which has caught the eye in recent times. They have piled up the points, especially on this ground, so if this does turn into a shootout they will still fancy their chances. It always gets said at this time of year though, their recent record in January is not great.
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Green Bay Packers
The Green Bay Packers were expected to have a season of transition this term after losing the services of Aaron Rodgers but nobody pointed that script out to Jordan Love, who has grown into the quarterback role the longer the season has gone on and arrives in Dallas playing the best football he has played so far. He has done that despite a number of receiving weapons on the sidelines as well so he deserves a lot of credit for his play to date.
The big thing for the Packers is that their defence has come to the party recently. It had gone missing towards the end of 2023 but they have produced two good displays when they needed them the most and that has got them into the playoffs. We know that the Packers can control the clock with their two excellent running backs so there is a lot to like about Green Bay going into this one, albeit they will need to be at their best to get anything from this one.
You would imagine the Dallas Cowboys should win this match but they are definitely not to be trusted at this time of a season and with the Green Bay Packers getting a 7.5 point start I think they are the ones to be with. Jordan Love has shown in recent weeks that he has got complete control of the offense and he is expected to have a couple of weapons back at his disposal for this game as well which will help. Green Bay have also shown enough on defence to suggest they can slow Dallas down.
The Cowboys have been flawless at home this season but there has been no jeopardy on any of those matches and that comes along here. I still think they might find a way but they are going to be all about winning the game not running up the score which could be significant with the Packers getting the extra 0.5 on top of a touchdown. Green Bay have pretty much played two knockout matches in the last two weeks and winning them can give them the confidence of staying competitive here at the very least.
Back Green Bay Packers (+7.5) to beat Dallas Cowboys at 1.87 with Betfred