Cowboys vs Chargers NFL Preview & Free Pick [10/16/2023]

Dallas (3-2) at LA Chargers (2-2)
When: Monday, October 16th, 2023
Where: SoFi Stadium,
Inglewood, CA

Time: 8:15 ET | TV: ESPN
Opening Odds: Dallas -2.5/47

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The Dallas Cowboys should feel right at home on Monday night when they visit the Los Angeles Chargers at SoFi Stadium. The Chargers don’t have much of fan base in L.A. and we know how popular the Cowboys are. Dallas is licking their wounds after getting embarrassed last Sunday night at the San Francisco 49ers. The Cowboys had allowed a total of 41 points in four games coming into last week and were throttled 42-10 in Santa Clara.

The Chargers had Week 5 off and last played on Oct. 1 – a 24-17 home win over the Las Vegas Raiders. L.A. will get a boost this week when running back Austin Ekeler returns after missing three games due to a sprained right ankle. Ekeler was hurt in Week 1 when he recorded 164 scrimmage yards (117 rushing, 47 receiving) in a 36-34 loss to the Miami Dolphins.

Dallas leads the all-time series 7-5 including a 20-17 win at Los Angeles in Week 2 of the 2021 season. Greg Zuerlein booted a 56-yard field goal as time expired to win it. Dak Prescott threw for 237 yards and an interception and Tony Pollard rushed for 109 yards and a score. Justin Herbert threw for 338 yards with a touchdown and pick for the Chargers. Dallas is a 1.5-point favorite as of Saturday afternoon with a total of 51.

Dallas’ three wins have come against three poor teams in the New York Giants, New York Jets and New England Patriots by a combined score of 108-13. The Cowboys lost by 12 at Arizona in Week 3 and then were blown out last week at San Fran. Dallas had just 197 total yards and eight first downs Sunday. Prescott was 14-of-24 for 153 yards, one touchdown and three interceptions. Of the 11 possessions with Prescott, nine of them lasted three plays or fewer.

The defense allowed two touchdown passes in the first four games, but saw Brock Purdy throw four and was able to sack him just once. Outside linebacker Leighton Vander Esch (neck) will be placed on injured reserve sometime before Monday’s game. Special teams standout C.J. Goodwin (pectoral) told reporters that he will be sidelined for four to six weeks. Wide receiver KaVontae Turpin (ankle) and safety Juanyeh Thomas (hamstring) missed Thursday’s practice.

Dallas Cowboys Injury Report [Week 6]

Tony PollardRBProb Mon - Shoulder - 10/13/23
Markquese BellSProb Mon - Shoulder - 10/13/23
Tyler BiadaszCProb Mon - Ankle - 10/13/23
Malik HookerSProb Mon - Shoulder - 10/13/23
Donovan WilsonSProb Mon - Ankle - 10/13/23
KaVontae TurpinWRProb Mon - Ankle - 10/13/23
Juanyeh ThomasSQues Mon - Hamstring - 10/13/23
Chuma EdogaGQues Mon - Illness - 10/13/23
Damone ClarkLBQues Mon - Shoulder - 10/13/23
Neville GallimoreDTQues Mon - Knee - 10/13/23
Leighton Vander EschLBQues Mon - Neck - 10/10/23
C.J. GoodwinCBout for season - Pectoral - 10/9/23
Peyton HendershotTEOut indefinitely - Ankle - 10/12/23
Trevon DiggsCBI-R - Knee - 9/23/23
Matt WaletzkoOTOut indefinitely - Shoulder - 9/16/23
Nahshon WrightCBQues Mon - Ankle - 10/12/23
Josh BallOTI-R - Hip - 8/29/23
David DurdenWRI-R - Knee - 8/30/23
John Stephens Jr.WRI-R - Knee - 8/30/23
DeMarvion OvershownLBI-R - Knee - 8/29/23

First-year offensive coordinator for the Chargers is Kellen Moore. He had the same position in Dallas until he was let go last year after another playoff failure. L.A. wanted to run the ball more this season and so far they’re averaging 119.8 – good for 13th in the league despite missing Ekeler for most of it. Herbert practiced Thursday and will play with a fractured left middle finger after injuring it on Oct. 1. On the season, Herbert has passed for 1,106 yards, seven touchdowns and one interception.

Defensive stars Joey Bosa and Derwin James both missed the team’s last game and both could play on Monday. The Chargers defense is allowing a league-worst 299.8 passing yards per game. The team traded former Pro Bowl cornerback JC Jackson to New England for a late-round pick earlier this week. Safety Alohi Gilman (heel) sat out practice, while tight end Donald Parham Jr. (wrist) and cornerback Deane Leonard (hamstring) were limited.

Los Angeles Chargers Injury Report [Week 6]

Justin HerbertQBProb Mon - Finger - 10/13/23
Trey Pipkins IIIOTProb Mon - Shoulder - 10/13/23
Rashawn SlaterOTProb Mon - Ankle - 10/13/23
Donald Parham Jr.TEProb Mon - Wrist - 10/13/23
Derwin James Jr.SProb Mon - Hamstring - 10/13/23
Nick WilliamsDLQues Mon - Back - 10/13/23
Deane LeonardDBQues Mon - Hamstring - 10/10/23
Joey BosaLBQues Mon - Hamstring - 10/10/23
Alohi GilmanSQues Mon - Heel - 10/10/23
Austin EkelerRBOut indefinitely - Ankle - 9/18/23
JT WoodsSOut indefinitely - Illness - 10/4/23
Corey LinsleyCOut indefinitely - Illness - 9/30/23
Mike WilliamsWRout for season - Knee - 9/26/23
Jalen GuytonWROut indefinitely - Knee - 8/29/23
Otito OgbonniaDLOut indefinitely - Knee - 8/29/23

I’m predicting a huge bounce back win for Dallas here. Their defense was humiliated last week and are much better than that showing. Prescott will also bounce back against the worst pass defense in the league. The Cowboys will also have plenty of fans there backing them. This one of my Best Bets of the week.

Week 6 Staff Selections

Pick: Cowboys -1.5