The Oakland Raiders will play the Dallas Cowboys on Sunday Night Football in Week 15. Here are the five Raiders you will need to watch to in this game.
Even though the Oakland Raiders lost to the arch rival Kansas City Chiefs 26-15 on Sunday afternoon in Arrowhead, there is still a sliver of hope that the Silver and Black can squeak into the AFC playoffs, either as a division champion or a wild card team. That all starts with a big win at home versus the Dallas Cowboys.
Oakland will host Dallas on Sunday Night Football in Week 15 with playoff hopes on the line for both teams. While the Raiders are 6-7, the Cowboys’ playoff hopes are a bit more realistic at this point. The Cowboys are 7-6 and are a game back of the Atlanta Falcons (8-5) for the No. 6 seed in the NFC. However, the Cowboys don’t have the head-to-head tiebreaker with the Falcons.
For either the Raiders or the Cowboys to make the playoffs, they will need to win out in their final three teams. The Raiders will have to beat Dallas at home, knock off the Philadelphia Eagles on the road Christmas night and beat the division rival Los Angeles Chargers in their soccer stadium on New Year’s Eve.
The Raiders will have to take it one game at a time. They need to put the awful Week 14 road loss to arch rival Kansas City firmly in the review mirror. For the Raiders to win on Sunday in primetime versus the Cowboys, these five players need to have great games for the Silver and Black.
It happened again. The Raiders were able to pick the ball off for the second time this season on Sunday afternoon. Safety Karl Joseph was the first Raiders’ defensive back to corral an interception on the season. Hard to imagine that it took until Week 14 for a Raiders’ defensive back to pick the ball off, but here we are.
Joseph has made great strides forward in his second season in the league. He’s not just a punishing tackler in the middle of the Raiders’ defense when asked to come up and be the eighth or ninth man in the box. Joseph is playing with poise in coverage and has really taken to new defensive coordinator John Pagano’s teachings.
What makes Joseph an intriguing watch on Sunday versus the Cowboys is the advantage the Raiders might have in pass defense. Yes, they might have a few. Cowboys quarterback Dak Prescott doesn’t look to throw the ball deep. If he does, Joseph might be there for another timely interception. Prescott does throw picks now that Ezekiel Elliott isn’t in the lineup for the Cowboys due to his suspension.
Joseph will have to keep guys like Dez Bryant, Cole Beasley and Jason Witten in check. Dallas does have plenty of receiving weapons, but none that will keep the Raiders’ defense up at night. Look for Joseph to play with poise and shine in a big way in this Oakland secondary on Sunday evening.