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Cary Edmondson-USA TODAY Sports

49ers hosting the Cowboys, favored by 3.5 points - 2023 Divisional playoff betting odds and pick

Jan 17, 2023 at 12:49 PM

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The San Francisco 49ers and Brock Purdy started a bit slowly but turned on the burners in the second half to smother and cover against the Seattle Seahawks by the score of 41-23. The Niners will rekindle a classic NFC playoff rivalry when they welcome the Dallas Cowboys in the Divisional playoff round. Here we discuss the odds and analysis from a betting perspective.

  • When: Sunday January 22nd at 3:30pm PT (FOX)
  • Where: Levi's Stadium, Santa Clara, California
  • Line: 49ers -3.5, o/u 46.5

Dallas Cowboys

The Dallas Cowboys proved that the Tampa Bay Buccaneers are who we they thought they were, with the Cowboys defense making Tom Brady look 45 years old and sure that an awakening of the dormant corpse of a Bucs offense would not happen in a 31-14 victory that was never as close as the final score, after Dallas raced out to an 18-0 halftime lead and its kicker missed 4 extra-points.

Dak Prescott completed 25 of 33 passes for 305 yards and 4 passing touchdowns and rushed for 24 yards on 7 carries and a rushing touchdown. Dallas Schultz caught 7 balls for 95 yards and 2 touchdowns, and the Cowboys defense sacked Brady twice and intercepted him once.

After the regular season, Dallas ranks 6th in total DVOA (defense-adjusted value over average) at 18.0 percent, 15th in total offensive DVOA at 2.9 percent with a 13th ranked offensive pass DVOA at 12.8 percent and 10th ranked offensive rush DVOA at 1.2 percent. The Cowboys defense is rated 2nd in defensive DVOA at -13.3 percent with a 3rd rated defensive pass DVOA at -11.3 percent and 5th rated defensive rush DVOA at -15.7 percent.

Dak Prescott is 14th in defense-adjusted yards above replacement (DYAR) at 526 and 12th in total QBR at 58.3 with 23 touchdown passes, 15 interceptions, 0 fumbles lost and a 66.4 completion percentage. Dallas' offensive line is 17th in run blocking with 4.38 adjusted line yards and 4th in pass protection with an adjusted sack rate of 4.7 percent. The Cowboys' defensive line is 10th against the run with 4.21 adjusted line yards and 2nd with an adjusted sack rate of 8.9 percent.

The Cowboys are 11-7 ATS and 9-9 to the over/under. Dallas is 2-1 ATS as an away underdog, 8-5 ATS in conference games, 5-4 ATS as the away team, 0-2 to the over/under with a rest disadvantage, 2-3 to the over/under as an underdog, 5-7 to the over/under in non-division games and 4-5 to the over/under as the away team. Tackle Jason Peters and cornerback Trayvon Mullen are questionable for the divisional round.

San Francisco 49ers

Brock Purdy completed 18 of 30 passes for 3 passing touchdowns while rushing for 16 yards on 4 carries and a touchdown in what is being described as one of the best rookie playoff performances since 1981. Christian McCaffrey rushed 15 times for 119 yards and Deebo Samuel returned with a vengeance and 133 receiving yards and a touchdown on 6 catches, while the defense sacked Geno Smith 3 times, recovering his fumble and making an interception.

After the regular season, San Francisco ranks 2nd in total DVOA at 27.6 percent, 6th in total offensive DVOA at 13.2 percent with a 3rd ranked offensive pass DVOA at 35.7 percent and 13th ranked offensive rush DVOA at -0.5 percent. The 49er defense is rated 1st in total defensive DVOA at -14.1 percent with a 5th rated defensive pass DVOA at -8.0 percent and 2nd rated defensive rush DVOA at -23.6 percent.

Brock Purdy finished the regular season with a DYAR of 397 and total QBR of 65.6 with 13 touchdown passes, 4 interceptions, zero fumbles and a 67.1 completion percentage. San Francisco's offensive line is 4th in run blocking with 4.70 adjusted line yards and 10th in pass protection with an adjusted sack rate of 6.3 percent. The Niners' defensive line is 2nd against the run with 3.78 adjusted line yards and 16th with an adjusted sack rate of 7.0 percent.

The 49ers are 12-6 ATS and 10-8 to the over/under. San Francisco is 8-1 ATS as a home favorite, 11-2 ATS in conference games and 3-1 ATS with a rest advantage. Receiver Jajuan Jennings and cornerback Ambry Thomas are questionable for the divisional round.


With these teams putting up 41 and 31 points in the Wild Card round, an initial reaction to their divisional match up might be to expect a lot of points and the over. But the Niners and Cowboys are ranked 1st and 2nd in total defensive DVOA, respectively, and these teams feature more complete defenses against both the pass and run compared to the 2021 iterations that met in the playoffs with the final score of 23-17.

While Purdy was able to carve up a bottom tier Seahawks defense last week, he was a little shaky when facing pressure from 35 year-old Bruce Irvin in the first half of that game, and now Purdy will have to contend with pressure from Micah Parsons and a 3rd ranked pass defense which could mean more running game and fewer explosive plays.

Jason Peters may be 40 years-old but he is a solid offensive tackle who has traditionally been better in pass protection than run blocking, and his absence could lead to more pressure on Prescott, affecting the Cowboys offensive potency in what we expect to be a lower scoring game.
This line opened up at 4 but professional groups took the Cowboys, leading to this line dropping down to 3.5 at most books. While sharp action and the corresponding steam will sometimes cause us to take pause, this week will not be one of those times.

The Dallas Cowboys are America's team and may have looked like world beaters in the Wild Card round, but Tampa Bay was an offensively-impotent team with a 45 year-old under center who backed into the playoffs with an 8-9 record to win a dumpster-fire of a division, and smashing a putrid Buccaneers squad may have led to Dallas being overvalued this week.

The Cowboys will be playing in its 4th straight road game, going back and forth from Tennessee in Week 17 to Washington in Week 18 to Tampa Bay in the Wild Card round to the Bay in the Divisional round, and will be coming off of a short week to face a 49ers squad that has won eleven straight games.

Many football analysts are holding their breath waiting for the Brock Purdy clunker game to come, expecting it to possibly come this week against Micah Parsons and the Cowboys 2nd ranked pass rush, but these analysts are now turning blue and might perish from asphyxiation. Dak Prescott is 0-2 in Divisional playoff games and we foresee that record moving to 0-3 this Sunday.

Pick: Under 46.5
Bonus Pick: 49ers -3.5

2022 Season ATS: 11-14


  • What is your best bet for the 2023 Divisional playoff game between the 49ers and Cowboys?
  • 49ers -3.5
  • Under 46.5
  • Over 46.5
  • Cowboys +3.5
  • 286 votes
The opinions within this article are those of the writer and, while just as important, are not necessarily those of the site as a whole.


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