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Los Angeles Rams vs. Dallas Cowboys - 8/12/17 NFL Pick, Odds, and Prediction

Dallas Cowboys (13-4) at Los Angeles Rams (4-12)

NFL Football: Saturday, August 12, 2017 at 9:00 pm (Los Angeles Memorial Coliseum)

The Line: Los Angeles Rams -- Over/Under: See the Latest Odds

TV: NFL

The Dallas Cowboys take on the Los Angeles Rams as both teams kick off their respective 2017 schedules in week 1 NFL preseason action.

The Dallas Cowboys will look to build on their strong season, finishing 13-3 with the top seed in the NFC however it didn't mean much as the Cowboys fell in the divisional round to the Packers. The Cowboys did their best to bolster their secondary in the offseason, signing Nolan Carroll from the rival Philadelphia Eagles to a 3-year, $10 million deal. The signing of Carroll will hopefully improve a Dallas Secondary and defensive unit that allowed the 7th-most yards through the air last season, giving up an average of 260.4 yards per game. 2017 will be the first season since 2002 in which Tony Romo wasn't on the sidelines in a Cowboys uniform, however Dallas is hopeful for more success in their respective sophomore seasons from Dak Prescott and Ezekiel Elliott, who made up one of the more formidable 1-2 punches in the NFL last season, which included Elliott leading the way for the 2nd-best ground attack in the league last season, with the Cowboys putting up 149.8 rushing yards per game last season.

Los Angeles Rams vs. Dallas Cowboys - 8/12/17 NFL Pick, Odds, and Prediction

USA TODAY Sports

The Los Angeles Rams will be looking to start off on the right foot this season after a brutal 4-12 2016 record that probably wasn't what Rams' faithful expected when the team announced they'd be returning to L.A. The Rams started 3-1 and then proceeded to drop 11 of 12 down the stretch leading to L.A. firing then head coach Jeff Fisher on December 12th. Sean McVay was hired as Fisher's replacement, making the 30-year old the youngest head coach in modern NFL history. The Rams are hoping from more from 2016 1st overall pick Jared Goff, who threw for 1,089 yards, 5 touchdowns and 7 interceptions last season. Goff's improvement will determine if the Rams will be able to improve their passing offense that finished 2nd last in the NFL last season, putting up just 184.4 passing yards per game last season. Todd Gurley also returns to help improve a ground attack that logged just 78.3 rushing yards per game, also 2nd last in that category. On the bright side, the Rams bring back key defensive pieces such as Aaron Donald, Domonique Easley, Connor Barwin and Alec Ogletree to help keep the Rams defensive unit in the top 10, allowing just 337 total yards per game last season while even possibly improving on that mark.

Dallas is 19-7 ATS in their last 26 games on grass and 1-6 ATS in their last 7 games overall while the under is 14-3 in their last 17 road games. Los Angeles is 0-7-1 ATS in their last 8 games against the NFC and 1-10-1 ATS in their last 12 games overall while the over is 6-2 in their last 8 Saturday games. Dallas is 4-1 ATS in the last 5 meetings between these two teams.

I think what this one boils down to is which team has the better backups as I'm not expecting to see any first string action, so with that said I lean towards Dallas, however no line has been released as of yet, so please check back for your free pick.

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