Best bets for Cowboys-Bears


The 2019 NFL season is reaching the stretch run, and we're here with a betting preview for Thursday night's game between the Dallas Cowboys and Chicago Bears.

Both teams are 6-6, but the Cowboys sit atop the NFC East while the Bears are third in the NFC North with dwindling wild-card hopes.

ESPN betting analyst Joe Fortenbaugh and fantasy's Mike Clay combine to offer their best bets for the matchup.

Note: Odds courtesy of Caesars Sportsbook, unless otherwise noted. Odds as of Wednesday.
Dallas Cowboys (-3, 42.5) at Chicago Bears

Under 42.5 points

Fortenbaugh: While the Bears enter Week 14 ranked fourth in the NFL in scoring defense (17.3 PPG) as well as third in scoring defense at home (16.0 PPG), that doesn't necessarily mean Chuck Pagano's unit is without vulnerability. Case in point: Take a moment and examine Chicago's run defense before and after defensive tackle Akiem Hicks went down with a dislocated left elbow in London against the Raiders, as the Bears were permitting just 61.5 rushing yards per game with Hicks on the field as opposed to 115.5 rushing yards per game without the services of the eight-year veteran. If the Cowboys are smart (big if), they'll feed running back Ezekiel Elliott early and often.

As for Chicago's offense, the Bears have topped 20 points in a game just once over their past six outings and face a Dallas defense Thursday night that ranks eighth in the league in opponent yards per play. I'm betting the under will cash for the sixth time in Chicago's past seven games.
David Montgomery under 61.5 rushing yards (-110)

Clay: Montgomery has failed to reach 62 rushing yards in eight of his 12 games this season, which includes four of his past five. He's hit the mark only twice since Week 4, though one of those came in a game against the Chargers in which he was handed the ball 27 times (a season high by nine) and the other was last week against a Lions defense that has struggled mightily against running backs. This week, Montgomery will have a tougher go against a Dallas defense that ranks 22nd in rushing attempts, 23rd in rushing yards against and 19th in yards per carry allowed to opposing backs. Montgomery is averaging a weak 3.45 yards per carry, including 1.43 yards after contact this season. Assuming 14 carries, a better baseline is 54 rushing yards this week.