Greg Olsen looks a good bet to score a Panthers touchdown
Carolina must deal with Dallas star Ezekiel Elliott
Sky Sports Action, 9.25pm Sunday
Dallas slipped to a 9-7 record last year after winning 13 matches in 2016, but now star running back Ezekiel Elliott does not have a six-match suspension hanging over him, the Cowboys will be looking to push on.
They could get some joy against the Panthers if Elliott is afforded opportunities by good play from Dallas's excellent offensive line, but there are still concerns regarding how their pass attack is going to flourish now tight end Jason Witten and receiver Dez Bryant have left.
Carolina forced their way into the playoffs last year despite competing in the NFC South, which is probably the toughest division in the league.
They will be once again looking to charismatic quarterback Cam Newton to drive them forward, although it will be interesting to note the change of approach that could be adopted by new offensive co-ordinator, the experienced Norv Turner.
The expectation is that Newton will not be charging around the pitch as much as he has done in previous seasons and their rushing game has been boosted by the signing of CJ Anderson from Denver to complement the versatile Christian McCaffrey.
However, one player who could greatly benefit is tight end Greg Olsen. He should see plenty of the ball if Newton stays in the pocket more and Turner was brilliant in bringing the best out in tight end Antonio Gates when he was head coach at the Chargers.
G Olsen to score a touchdown
1pt 2-1 Betfair, Sky Bet
Venue Bank of America Stadium, Charlotte, North Carolina
Weather Partly cloudy, 27C
Vegas handicap Dallas +3
Vegas points line 42.5
Cornerback Chidobe Awuzie and safety Kavon Frazier are questionable, and centre Travis Frederick and safety Xavier Woods are out.
Receiver Curtis Samuel is missing through illness. Right tackle Daryl Williams is listed as questionable with a knee problem.
The points total has gone under the line in eight of Dallas's last nine matches.
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