The Dallas Cowboys will play the most important game of the season on Sunday afternoon (where have I heard those words before?) when they host the Philadelphia Eagles. Before, during, and after that there will be other things that they’ll be looking to win on top of their own contest.
Things have really changed over the last month for the Cowboys. They sit in first place in the NFC East and are even in contention for an NFC wildcard should they not be able to earn a cap and t-shirt for the division. They’ve done their part as far as winning games and they’ve gotten some serious help. Last week was particularly great all the way around.
What are we looking for this week (besides the obvious)? We’re glad you asked. Welcome to BTB’s official rooting guide for Week 14 of the 2018 season. Get those pens out to write to Santa!
EARLY GAMES: Giants, Buccaneers, Packers, Browns
Week 14 features every NFC East team playing against one another and while the Cowboys and Eagles sit at the adult’s table the Giants and Redskins will have their coloring books and sippy cups over on the one where high chairs are necessary.
The reality of the situation is that New York trails Washington in the division so we want them to win. Another Washington loss (coupled with more Cowboys wins) helps Dallas secure the division all the more quickly which is something we’re always interested in. A Giants win also continues to destroy New York’s draft position which is oh so sweet.
Tampa Bay is in a special club with the Cowboys this season as they’re the only two teams that have defeated the New Orleans Saints in 2018. The Bucs did it way back in Week 1 and things are very different now, but this is a division rivalry so anything can happen. There are people still holding on to hope that the Saints will falter enough for the Cowboys to capture the two-seed and a first-round bye. It’s unlikely, but crazier things have happened.
As far as the Packers go, allow me to explain. Green Bay hosts Atlanta in the first game without Mike McCarthy at the helm for the historic franchise. Dallas already defeated the Falcons on the season, but it’s not like Atlanta is going to make a push for a wildcard at this point. The reason we want the Packers to win is so that they continue to have something to play for and build up some positive momentum heading into next week. Who do the Packers play next week? The Chicago Bears. We’ll get there soon enough.
It goes without saying that we always prefer AFC teams to win over NFC ones. Carolina has really fallen apart as of late and their playoff hopes look dim at the moment, but let’s go ahead and turn out the lights all the way. Go right on ahead, Cleveland.
AFTERNOON GAMES: Broncos, Cowboys (duh), Cardinals
The Denver Broncos (an AFC team) are playing against the San Francisco 49ers (an NFC team). There’s the AFC-NFC logic and there’s also the fact that we are not too fond of San Francisco historically. The general logic here is to root for Denver, but it’s understandable if you’d want to root for the 49ers to win so that they’d compromise their draft position. This is also technically rooting against the 49ers so you’re good either way!
Go Cowboys. Duh.
Arizona is hosting the Lions who are only better than them by a game. It would be optimal for the Cardinals to win in the interest of keeping teams as far away as possible from the Cowboys but it’s not like a Lions win is going to cause us distress.
PRIMETIME GAMES: Rams and Vikings
We mentioned the Chicago Bears earlier, this is where they come into play.
Chicago has the Cowboys by a game in the conference standings at the moment. Big shout out to Eli Manning for helping the cause last week while (as mentioned) ruining his team’s draft stock. Love you so much, Eli.
We want the Bears to be caught by the Cowboys. Los Angeles has already secured the NFC West, it’s best for the Cowboys if they just run away with the conference’s top seed. If the Bears lose to the Rams and to their Week 15 opponent (hopefully the suddenly-inspired Packers!) they are all the more reachable by the Cowboys.
Monday night can go a few ways, honestly. You may have surrendered yourself to the idea of Seattle as a wildcard team and don’t want anybody to get anywhere near it therefore are rooting for the Seahawks, but considering their record is identical to the Cowboys it makes more sense to have them lose. Go Vikings, but this won’t ruin the day by any means.
Official Week 14 rooting guide
|Time||Away team||Home Team||Result|
|1:00 PM||N.Y. Giants (4-8)||Washington (6-6)|
|1:00 PM||New Orleans (10-2)||Tampa Bay (5-7)|
|1:00 PM||New England (9-3)||Miami (6-6)||N/A|
|1:00 PM||Baltimore (7-5)||Kansas City (10-2)||N/A|
|1:00 PM||Indianapolis (6-6)||Houston (9-3)||N/A|
|1:00 PM||Atlanta (4-8)||Green Bay (4-7-1)|
|1:00 PM||Carolina (6-6)||Cleveland (4-7-1)|
|1:00 PM||N.Y. Jets (3-9)||Buffalo (4-8)||N/A|
|4:05 PM||Denver (6-6)||San Francisco (2-10)|
|4:05 PM||Cincinnati (5-7)||L.A. Chargers (9-3)||N/A|
|4:25 PM||Pittsburgh (7-4-1)||Oakland (2-10)||N/A|
|4:25 PM||Philadelphia (6-6)||Dallas (7-5)|
|4:25 PM||Detroit (4-8)||Arizona (3-9)|
|SNF||L.A. Rams (11-1)||Chicago (8-4)|
|MNF||Minnesota (6-5-1)||Seattle (7-5)|