Green Bay at Dallas
When: 4:40 PM ET, Sunday, January 15, 2017
Where: AT&T Stadium, Arlington, Texas
The Green Bay Packers painted themselves into a corner earlier this season on the heels of a four-game losing streak, prompting Aaron Rodgers to claim the club could "run the table" in order to gain its eighth straight playoff appearance. Six victories to end the campaign and a convincing rout in the wild-card game have the Packers surging into the NFC Divisional Round for Sunday's date with the well-rested Dallas Cowboys.
"They were off last week, and they're hosting the game (Sunday), so there's extra pressure on them as the No. 1 seed to win," Rodgers told reporters. "And we're coming in with a lot of confidence and riding the streak. We're feeling good about the way we've been playing." With good reason, as Rodgers threw for 362 yards and four touchdowns - three to wideout Randall Cobb - in a 38-13 victory over the New York Giants last Sunday. While Dallas liberally has rested its stars dating back to a Week 17 loss to Philadelphia, its rookie Pro Bowl tandem of quarterback Dak Prescott and tailback Ezekiel Elliott (NFL-best 1,631 yards, 5.1 per carry) shredded Green Bay at Lambeau Field in a 30-16 victory on Oct. 16. Prescott threw for three touchdowns while Elliott gashed the Packers' then top-ranked rush defense for 157 yards in the win.TV:
4:40 p.m. ET, FOX. LINE:
Cowboys -4.5 O/U: 52.5ABOUT THE PACKERS:
Rodgers remains confident facing Dallas' 26th-ranked pass defense despite potentially playing without trusted wideout Jordy Nelson (NFL-leading 14 receiving TDs), who sustained a rib injury early in the wild-card game. Davante Adams set career highs with 75 catches, 997 yards and 12 touchdowns this season and had seven receptions for 117 yards and a score in a postseason encounter with Dallas two years ago. Cobb made eight catches for 116 yards in that playoff game versus the Cowboys and showed his ankle injury is a thing of the past with his performance last week, while his versatility to play in the slot or on the outside opens doors for promising rookie Geronimo Allison.ABOUT THE COWBOYS (13-3):
While Prescott and Elliott have been the talk of the town this season, receiver Dez Bryant found himself taken back to January 2015 shortly after learning that he'd be facing the Packers in a divisional-round playoff game. "Everywhere I go, I still hear it 'til this day: It was a catch," the 28-year-old Bryant said of his overturned reception late in the fourth quarter in the Cowboys' loss. Bryant may find the sledding tough on Sunday as he is expected to be shadowed by cornerback LaDarius Gunter, who limited Giants star Odell Beckham Jr. to four catches and 28 yards last week.EXTRA POINTS
1. Dallas WR Cole Beasley recorded a team-high six receptions and two touchdowns in the first encounter with Green Bay but has found the end zone just twice in his last 10 games.
2. Packers WR/RB Ty Montgomery, who is nursing an ankle injury, made 10 catches for 98 yards in the initial meeting with the Cowboys.
3. Dallas LB Sean Lee registered an NFL third-best and career-high 145 tackles this season, with a team-leading 13 coming in the first game versus Green Bay.PREDICTION:
Cowboys 28, Packers 24
Stats and Records
(Regular Season and Playoffs)