(Editor's Note: Each week, the staff of DallasCowboys.com will present "The Big Picture" for the upcoming game, presenting an overall update for each team as they head into the upcoming contest. This week, the Cowboys have a quick turnaround for their annual Thanksgiving stretch, this year facing the Washington Redskins.)
WHAT: Washington Redskins at Dallas Cowboys
WHEN: Thursday, 3:30 p.m. (Central)
WHERE:AT&T Stadium, Arlington, Texas
Week 2 at FedExField marked the Cowboys' first win of the season – Dak Prescott's first victory as an NFL starting quarterback, too – and the start of a franchise-record nine-game winning streak. Two months later, the Cowboys and Redskins will meet again on Thanksgiving at AT&T Stadium, where Washington has won in each of the last two seasons.
The Cowboys have won four straight at home since dropping the season opener to the New York Giants, 20-19. In this past Sunday's 27-17 win over the Baltimore Ravens, the Dallas offense produced over 400 total yards for the eighth consecutive game and Prescott became the first rookie quarterback to throw for 300 yards with two touchdowns and no interceptions in two consecutive games, according to ESPN.
The defense limited the Ravens to 3-of-9 third down conversions, and timely stops made the difference in the Cowboys' comeback victory at Washington in Week 2. They shut out the Redskins on three drives in the fourth quarter and intercepted quarterback Kirk Cousins in the end zone, setting up Prescott's winning drive.
The Cowboys lead the all-time series against their NFC East rivals, 67-44-2, and have a 29-18-1 record on Thanksgiving Day, including a 6-1 record against Washington.
At 6-3-1, the Redskins stand in third place in the division with two straight wins coming off their bye. This past Sunday night's 42-24 victory over the Green Bay Packers was their most decisive of the season and their third-highest point total since 2013. The Washington offense piled up 515 total yards, including 375 passing yards and three touchdowns from Cousins for a season-best 145.8 passer rating.
Cousins has raised his season passer rating to 98.8 with 17 touchdowns and seven interceptions. On Sunday night he delivered 44- and 70-yard touchdown passes to Jamison Crowder and Pierre Garcon, respectively.
Both receivers, along with DeSean Jackson and tight end Jordan Reed, will challenge a Cowboys secondary that is playing without cornerback Morris Claiborne (groin) and safety Barry Church (forearm). The Redskins now rank second in total offense (418.5 per game) and ninth in scoring (25.4).
He's not getting nearly the same attention as Ezekiel Elliott, the Cowboys' league-leading rusher, but undrafted rookie Rob Kelley has sparked the Redskins' offense since entering the starting lineup three games ago. The 228-pounder rushed for 137 yards and three touchdowns against the Packers.
And the Washington defense started strong in Week 11 by forcing three-and-outs on the Packers' first three drives – the first time that has happened in quarterback Aaron Rodgers' Green Bay career, according to NFL Research. The Cowboys will need a faster start on offense than the Ravens game, when they punted on their first four drives for the first time all season.