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Everything You Need to Know: Ravens vs. Cowboys

Left: RB Mark Ingram II; Right: WR Amari Cooper
Left: RB Mark Ingram II; Right: WR Amari Cooper


Kickoff: 8:05 p.m., M&T Bank Stadium

TV: WBFF Channel 45 (Baltimore), Channel 5 (Washington, D.C.), FOX crew (Joe Buck, Troy Aikman, Erin Andrews, Kristina Pink)

Radio: WBAL (1090 AM/101.5 FM) and 98 Rock (97.9 FM), Ravens crew (Gerry Sandusky, Dennis Pitta); WDCN La Nueva 87.7 on the Ravens app: (David Andrade, Gustavo Salazar, Ximena Lugo Latorre)


The Ravens have lost three straight, their longest skid since 2018, and they need a victory as they battle to make the playoffs. With just five games left, the Ravens may have to win all of their remining games to reach the postseason. The Cowboys can still win the NFC East, where every team is below .500. However, another defeat would damage Dallas' chances.


The Ravens lead the all-time series, 4-1, winning all three games in Baltimore. They last met in 2016, when the Cowboys prevailed, 27-17, in Dallas. Dez Bryant, who is now with the Ravens, caught two touchdown passes for Dallas and had six receptions for 80 yards. Ezekiel Elliott gained 97 yards on 25 carries for the Cowboys.


With numerous players returning, can the Ravens get back on the winning track?

The Ravens were severely undermanned during last week's loss in Pittsburgh, but a host of key players have returned from the Reserve/COVID-19 list, including Lamar Jackson, Calais Campbell, Pernell McPhee, Mark Ingram II, J.K. Dobbins, Patrick Ricard, Patrick Mekari, Matt Skura, Justin Madubuike, Jihad Ward, and Morgan Cox. That's a lot of talent, and the Ravens hope it leads to a much-needed victory.

Will Dez Bryant be a playmaker against his former team?

Facing his former team for the first time will make this an emotional night for Bryant. He didn't make a catch against the Steelers, but Bryant had four receptions the previous week against the Tennessee Titans. Baltimore's offense needs a jolt and the Ravens may target Bryant early, hoping to feed off his energy.

Can Baltimore's defense dominate by forcing takeaways?

Elliott has six fumbles this season and has lost five of them. Ravens cornerback Marlon Humphrey has forced six fumbles, Marcus Peters has forced three, and Dallas' minus-13 turnover ratio is the second worst in the NFL. The Cowboys have little chance to pull off an upset unless they take care of the football, and the Ravens are very good at taking it.

Key Matchups

Ravens secondary vs. Cowboys wide receivers

Dallas has a talented wide receiver group featuring Amari Cooper, CeeDee Lamb and Michael Gallup. Cowboys quarterback Andy Dalton is very familiar with Baltimore's defense from his years playing with the Cincinnati Bengals. Humphrey and Peters have the talent to matchup with anyone, but Jimmy Smith (groin) and Tramon Williams (hamstring) may not play and Anthony Averett (shoulder) will be returning from the injured list if he plays. The Cowboys may test Baltimore's secondary with three-wide formations, looking for matchups they can exploit.

Ravens running game vs. Cowboys defensive line

Dallas has allowed 156.4 yards per game on the ground, the most in the NFL. The Ravens' backfield is much deeper than it was last week, and so is their offensive line. It makes sense for Baltimore to attack Dallas with its running game.

Ravens pass rush vs. Cowboys offensive line

Dallas has allowed 31 sacks and starting offensive linemen Zack Martin and Cameron Erving have been ruled out. The Ravens have plenty of pass rushers to get after Dalton, even if Matthew Judon (Reserve/COVID-19) is unavailable. Expect Ravens Defensive Coordinator Wink Martindale to dial up some of his blitz packages.

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