Raiders vs. Cowboys: Five things to watch

Posted Wednesday, Nov. 27, 2013  comments  Print Reprints

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1Run defense

The Cowboys have given up 202, 242, 169 and 143 yards rushing in their past four games. That has been against the 25th-, 23rd-, 11th- and 22nd-ranked rush offenses in the league. The Raiders are ranked No. 4.

2Thanksgiving Tony

Tony Romo has a 106.4 rating on Thanksgiving Day for the Cowboys. That’s a high standard. He’s 5-1 in six starts, with a 65.7 completion percentage, 17 touchdowns and six interceptions.

3Return game

The Cowboys are going to be without Dwayne Harris, No. 2 in return average in the NFL on both kickoffs and punts. Cole Beasley was the primary punt returner in relief against the New York Giants, but the kickoff return job might go to Terrance Williams or by committee.

4Speaking of kicks

The Raiders have been shaky. Sebastian Janikowski has missed seven field goals this year, more than the past two years combined. Meanwhile, the Cowboys’ Dan Bailey is 18 for 20, and coming off a game-winner at the New York Giants.

5Change of pace

Lance Dunbar had his two most explosive plays of the year last week, a 17-yard catch and an 18-yard run. He produced 46 yards on five touches. The Cowboys have wanted to work him in. He might become an extra dimension for the offense late in the year. — Carlos Mendez

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