The Dallas Cowboys need a win this week both to help them keep the lead in the NFC East and get a moral boost throughout the organization and fan base. They will have to get that win on the road tomorrow night over the Chicago Bears, and that won’t be easily done. In fact, this matchup feels similar to the one Dallas lost just a week ago to the Buffalo Bills.
The story going into the Thanksgiving game was that between Buffalo and Dallas’ combined 14 wins only one of them was against a winning team. The Bills defeated the Tennesee Titans, currently 7-5, in Week 4. Otherwise, the other 13 victories were at the expense of the Bengals, Dolphins, Giants, Redskins, and the rest of the NFL’s 2019 basement dwellers.
This week’s Cowboys-Bears game has a similar setup. Dallas remains winless against teams with .500 records or better and Chicago has a single victory, Week 4 against the Vikings, against a winning team.
Both Dallas and Chicago are 6-6 right now but neither is respected as an NFC contender. The Bears are improbable to make the playoffs and the Cowboys are only going to get in because they are the best team in the league’s worst division.
The rest of the league is entitled to their opinions, but the Cowboys have no room to take the Bears for granted.
Despite playing at home on a short week, Dallas was completely outclassed in last week’s loss to Buffalo. No matter what you thought of both team going in, the Bills came out of that one looking like a legitimate NFL playoff team.
The Cowboys looked, as they have most of 2019, like a joke.
The Bears are on a two-game win streak heading into tomorrow night’s game, albeit against the Giants and a Lions team on its third-string quarterback. But positive momentum, and now the faintest whiff of playoff chances, could give Chicago new energy against the Cowboys.
Chicago has the 7th-ranked defense in the NFL right now, just a few slows below the Bills in 3rd place. The Bears rely on keeping the score low and hoping that their offense does just enough to win; they’re not going to succeed in a shootout.
It is their limitation at quarterback with Mitch Trubisky where Chicago may have a glaring weakness compared to Buffalo. While Josh Allen is an improving young talent with dual-threat ability as a runner, Trubisky is a low-producing passer who many Bears fans would love to replace.
But no matter what Trubisky or the Bears do on Thursday Night Football, this game will likely come down to the Dallas Cowboys. Will Dallas continue its 2019 trends of slow starts, costly turnovers, missed field goals, and all the other self-inflicted wounds that have caused our current woes?
The Cowboys have proven one thing about all else this year; they can find ways to lose. Whether it’s the Bills, the New York Jets, or anyone else they’re better than “on paper,” Dallas has shot itself in the foot so much that they might as well replace Rowdy with Plaxico Burress.
After blowing last week’s game against Buffalo, Dallas’ lead in the NFC East got a major gift from the Eagles’ loss to the Miami Dolphins. But with Philadelphia hosting the New York Giants this Sunday, their charitableness is probably going to end.
The Cowboys are in “must win” mode for at least the next three weeks. Will Dallas respond to the adversity tomorrow night in Chicago and finally play up to potential, or will the Bears show us up just like the Bills did?