The Dallas Cowboys never found the end zone in their last game and hope to avoid another turkey-like performance when they face the Las Vegas Raiders on Thanksgiving Day in Arlington, Texas.
The Raiders (5-5) have their own issues, with three straight losses after a strong start.
Dallas is a 7.5-point favorite at DraftKings, where 61 percent of the bets and 75 percent of the spread-line money is backing the Cowboys. Dallas has also been forecast with a 56 percent chance of winning by AI-driven analytics company Quarter4.
The Cowboys (7-3) had just 276 yards when they settled for three field goals Sunday in a 19-9 road loss to the Kansas City Chiefs. It wasn’t the type of performance you’d expect from one of the league’s top offenses, but quarterback Dak Prescott said he isn’t concerned.
“I’m not worried about how this team is going to respond,” Prescott said. “As long as I’m a part of this team, quarterbacking this offense, that’s the least of my worries is how we’re going to respond.
“We’re a resilient bunch. (The Chiefs) and their atmosphere got the best of us. It’s part of the game. We’ll be better because of it.”
Despite the poor showing, Dallas still leads the NFL in total offense at 418.1 yards per game and ranks third in scoring offense (29.3).
Also, the Cowboys will be without standout wideouts Amari Cooper (COVID-19) and CeeDee Lamb (concussion) for the second straight game.
Cooper is reportedly unvaccinated and Dallas owner Jerry Jones feels Cooper would be able to play on Thanksgiving if he had received the vaccine.
“He’s outstanding and nobody’s saying that he isn’t outstanding,” Jones told a Dallas radio show. “But this is a classic case of how it can impact a team.
“At the end of the day, this is not ‘individual,’ it is ‘team.’ You cannot win anything individually.”
Lamb was listed as questionable after taking part in limited practice but is not expected to play, according to a report by the NFL Network.
The Cowboys have dropped two of their past three games, both against AFC West teams — the Chiefs and Denver Broncos.
Now another AFC West team will take its shot.
But Las Vegas is struggling badly and has been outscored 94-43 during the three-game slide.
“In football, it’s going to be ups and downs,” said Raiders defensive end Yannick Ngakoue, who has a team-best 7.0 sacks. “Unfortunately, these past few weeks we haven’t gotten it done as a group, as a team. But at the end of the day, you’ve got to keep working. It’s part of the game. Adversity is going to come; it’s just all about how you respond.”
Las Vegas played its last two games at home and lost by an average of 23 points to the Chiefs and Cincinnati Bengals.
Interim Raiders coach Rich Bisaccia insists his team can turn things back around.
“We’ve been fighting. Fighting to me comes from the soul, and it’s the heart of a man,” Bisaccia said. “I don’t see those issues on tape. I feel like we’ve done a good job of battling. … I don’t see the fight or the will of our team or the will of the individual men in there being an issue.
“I don’t see an issue in our effort or our ability to compete until the bitter end, but everyone has their take on it.”
Raiders quarterback Derek Carr is 68 passing yards away from becoming the fifth quarterback in NFL history to reach 30,000 in his first eight seasons.
Carr passed for just 215 yards against Cincinnati. Tight end Darren Waller had his second 100-yard outing of the season, making seven receptions for 116 yards.
The 51.5-point Over/Under at DraftKings has seen fairly split action with 52 percent of the bets and 51 percent of the money backing the Under.
Linebacker Nick Kwiatkoski and cornerback Keisean Nixon both sat out practice this week with ankle injuries, with Kwiatkoski officially ruled out on Wednesdya.
Dallas has won the past three meetings. The Raiders’ most recent victory in the series came in 2005.