Tale Of The Tape: Oakland Raiders At Dallas Cowboys

Oakland Raiders
Dallas Cowboys
(Photo by Thearon W. Henderson/Getty Images)
(Photo by Elsa/Getty Images)
(Photo by Thearon W. Henderson/Getty Images)
(Photo by Elsa/Getty Images)
The Raiders have discovered some real hope at the quarterback position this year as both Terrelle Pryor and Matt McGloin have had excellent moments. Of the two, McGloin may be the better passer, while Pryor has the more finished game. Don’t be surprised to see the Raiders go with McGloin so they can get their passing game going against the vulnerable Cowboys defense.
Winner Tony Romo is usually successful in his November home games, and if the Cowboys are going to have a decent chance to play winning postseason football, it would not be advisable to lose a Thanksgiving Day home game to the Raiders. If Romo has a sharp day, the Cowboys should have a chance to open a sizable lead and cruise in this game.
The Raiders would be in a much better position if they had a dependable running game to help their promising but unproven quarterbacks. Darren McFadden can’t seem to get or stay healthy, and that’s an issue. Wide receivers Denarius Moore and Rod Streater are both decent receivers who have a chance to get better, but neither one is a future star.
Winner The Cowboys would like to get their running attack going with DeMarco Murray, but Oakland is much tougher against the run than it is against the pass. As usual, the Cowboys are going to try to establish Dez Bryant early in the game and it doesn’t seem likely that the Raiders can slow him down. Jason Witten remains an excellent pass-catching tight, while Terrance Williams is a solid complementary receiver.
Winner The Raiders play hard on defense, but they struggle to contain top receivers. They are going to be put to the test by Bryant throughout the game. Hard-hitting middle linebacker Nick Roach has become the best player on the Raiders defense, Free safety Charles Woodson gives the defense stability and leadership, but his lack of speed is a liability.
The Cowboys have simply been awful defensively, as they not only give up more yards than any other team, they also give up big plays at key moments. If linebacker DeMarcus Ware can start to regain his form, they have a chance to improve and confuse the Raiders’ young quarterbacks. Sean Lee (hamstring) missed the Cowboys’ Week 12 game with the Giants, but he could be back for this game.
Special Teams
The Raiders have had problems with their special teams coverage units and that could be a problem because the Cowboys are as good as any team when it comes to exploiting special teams weaknesses. Sebastian Janikowski has not enjoyed his best year and Marquette King is an ordinary punter.
Winner The Cowboys are one to f the league’s top teams at punt and kickoff coverage, but Dwayne Harris’s hamstring injury hurts their ability to make long returns. Dan Bailey has been very accurate in his placekicking and Chris Jones excels at dropping his punts inside the opponents’ 20.

The Winner Is

(Photo by Elsa/Getty Images)
Winner Dallas Cowboys
3 out of 4

The Cowboys have no excuses and can’t let this game slip through their fingers at home against an opponent they should be able to dominate.


  1. MINNEAPOLIS, MN - OCTOBER 9: Quarterback Brock Osweiler #17 of the Houston Texans drops back to pass during the first quarter of the game on October 9, 2016 at US Bank Stadium in Minneapolis, Minnesota. (Photo by Hannah Foslien/Getty Images) SAN DIEGO, CA - OCTOBER 13:  Trevor Siemian #13 of the Denver Broncos warms up before the game against the San Diego Chargers at Qualcomm Stadium on October 13, 2016 in San Diego, California.  (Photo by Harry How/Getty Images)
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  3. FOXBORO, MA - OCTOBER 16:  Tom Brady #12 of the New England Patriots prepares to receive a snap during the game against the Cincinnati Bengals at Gillette Stadium on October 16, 2016 in Foxboro, Massachusetts.  (Photo by Jim Rogash/Getty Images) PHILADELPHIA, PA - SEPTEMBER 25:  Quarterback  Landry Jones #3 of the Pittsburgh Steelers throws a pass during warm ups before playing against the Philadelphia Eagles at Lincoln Financial Field on September 25, 2016 in Philadelphia, Pennsylvania.  (Photo by Rich Schultz/Getty Images)
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