The Dallas Cowboys are underdogs Sunday.
That came as a surprise to Mike McCarthy.
After dispatching the Tampa Bay Buccaneers on Monday in a wild card round game, they’ll now face the red-hot San Francisco 49ers. While the Cowboys played in a tougher division, the Niners finished the season with one more win, haven’t lost since Oct. 23, and will be hosting Sunday.
In other words, it would be surprising if San Francisco wasn’t the betting favorite.
Cowboys star linebacker Micah Parsons embraced the underdog role when asked about it this week. Made aware of the odds and Parsons’ comments in his weekly appearance on “Shan and RJ,” McCarthy was caught off guard.
“So we’re the underdog?” McCarthy asked, before being told that there’s a four-point spread. “By four? Wow. OK.”
McCarthy then started digging for an answer.
“We're very confident, I think there’s an underdog in all of us,” the coach said. “As you thrive and strive through this business –”
At that point, the hosts began ribbing McCarthy for the directionless answer, to which the coach admitted he was filibustering.
“I’m right there with Micah,” McCarthy eventually said. “Let’s just go with that one.”
This actually isn’t the first time this season that the betting line has caught McCarthy’s attention. Back in Week 5, the Cowboys were 5.5-point underdogs on the road against the Rams. McCarthy clearly was surprised by that, and in retrospect it is funny to think that they weren’t the favorite in that game. However, at that point it wasn’t clear just how much of a mess the Rams were, and they were reigning Super Bowl champions.
Dallas responded by beating the Rams 22-10, and certainly its hope is a similar result this time around against the 49ers.
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