Raiders vs. Cowboys 2013 game preview: Dallas looks to continue winning ways

The Cowboys are aiming to continue their lead in the NFC East with a win over the Raiders on Thanksgiving.

The Cowboys will host the Raiders on Thanksgiving in the annual Thursday game in Dallas. The Raiders playoff chances are evaporating quickly, so a win against Dallas would go a long way in keeping their hopes alive. The Cowboys are tied for the lead in the NFC East, and a win on Thursday would be huge in their quest to jump the Eagles for sole possession of the division.

Meet the Cowboys

Dallas is in prime position to win the NFC East at 6-5. The Cowboys are currently tied with the Eagles, but own the tiebreaker after a head-to-head win earlier in the season. Quarterback Tony Romo and wide receiver Dez Bryant have established an elite connection this season and have been aided (as always) by tight end Jason Witten.

The Cowboys own the worst defense in the league, however, and are allowing 432.2 yards per game. Dallas is surrendering 25.4 points per game this season. However, the team's offense is putting up 27.1 points per contest.

Meet the Raiders

The Raiders have started three different quarterback this season and have seemingly settled on undrafted rookie Matt McGloin. Oakland is 1-1 under McGloin's watch and he performed admirably in both starts. The Raiders offense is producing 19.4 points per game.

On defense, the Raiders rank 16th in the league. However, they are giving up 24.5 points per game. Oakland is 25th in the league with interceptions with just seven picks this season.

Local Takes: Cowboys

Dave Halprin of Blogging the Boys thinks the Cowboys defense is coming together in the red zone:

One noticeable aspect of the Cowboys defense on Sunday against the Giants was the amount of rushing yards they gave up. But when it came to the red zone, they were able to hold the Giants down on two separate occasions in the first half, a huge turning point in the game.

On the day, the Giants ran for 202 yards and averaged 6.7 yards per run. The key though was holding Eli Manning to 174 yards passing and averaging a paltry 5.8 yards per attempt. The Cowboys ran a very basic defense for a lot of the game. Basically, they begged the Giants to run the ball, they played two safeties over the top to protect from the long pass, and waited for the Giants to make a mistake or smothered them in the red zone.

Local Takes: Raiders

Levi Damien of Silver and Black Pride believes that the playoff chances for the Raiders are slim:

The six seed now belongs to the Titans and the Raiders are most likely to be just playing out a lost season. The Raiders would have to win out the season now just to have a winning record. As unlikely as that is, even a 9-7 non-division winner is far from a playoff lock. Most times they miss out on the playoffs.

Follow the Fun

Be sure to check out SB Nation's team blogs, Blogging the Boys and Silver and Black Pride, for more analysis and highlights from the game.

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All six of SB Nation's experts predicted the Cowboys to come away victorious against the Raiders on Thursday.


The Cowboys are 10.5-point home favorites against the Raiders, according to Odds Shark.

Next Week

The Cowboys will travel to Chicago to face the Bears in Week 14. The Raiders are set to play the Jets in The Meadowlands.

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