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49ers vs. Cowboys: San Francisco opens up as two-point favorites against Dallas

The once-storied rivalry isn’t what it used to be, but it’s always special with San Francisco takes on Dallas.

Photo by Focus on Sport/Getty Images

The rivalry between the San Francisco 49ers and Dallas Cowboys is one of the best in NFL history. The respective franchises dominated the league in the 80s and 90s and developed a disdain for each other.

During the 90s, the two teams played each other nine teams, including the playoffs, but they have only met four times since 2010.

The Niners will take on the Cowboys in Week 15 with both teams amidst a season that has seen them fall below expectations. San Francisco and Dallas have been hit hard by the injuries that robbed them of championship dreams.

The 49ers are 5-8 and clinging to their playoff lives. They need to win all three games just to have a chance to get into the postseason, but with the shoddy quarterback play, it seems like it will be too tall of an order for the team to complete.

San Francisco has lost five out of its last six games and fallen towards the bottom of the NFC standings. Dallas is coming off a dominant 30-7 win over the lowly Cincinnati Bengals last week to improve to 4-9 and is still alive in the chase for the NFC East crown.

Oddsmakers have this one being a close affair. The betting line has the Niners favored by 2.5 points, and the over/under is set at 45.

The 49ers are 5-8 against the spread this season and has only covered once in the previous six weeks. The Cowboys are 3-10 ATS in 2020 and have covered in three out of their last five contests.

The two-storied franchises have played 36 times, with Dallas holding a slight edge with a record of 18-17-1. The Cowboys have beaten the Niners five out of the last six times, with the most recent win coming in Kyle Shanahan’s first year as the 49ers’ head coach. Dallas dominated San Francisco 40-10 in Week 7 of the 2017 season.

It’s plain to see why the rivalry has lost a bit of its luster compared to the glory days. The last time the two teams played each other when both finished with a winning record was back in 1998. Neither franchise has finished above .500 in any of the 10 previous seasons they have squared off.

This game was initially scheduled to be on Sunday Night Football, but it was moved to the early slot because both teams have a losing record. If San Francisco didn’t lose virtually all of its top players and Dallas wasn’t without starting quarterback Dak Prescott, plus injuries didn’t mar its offensive line, this would have been one of the marquee matchups of the week.

What are some of your favorite memories of the 49ers-Cowboys rivalry?