As has been the tradition since 1966, the Dallas Cowboys played a game on Thanksgiving Day. This time around, they did so against the 4-7 Oakland Raiders. The Raiders had lost three out of their last four games going into the holiday matchup. Whereas the Cowboys were coming off a win over the New York Giants that allowed them to take the top spot in the NFC East. Despite many experts choosing the Cowboys as their favorites to win this game, it was a group of ex-Dallas players who nearly had their revenge on their former team.
In the days leading up to the matchup, former Dallas cornerback Mike Jenkins told the media his departure from Dallas last season was part of a personal “vendetta”. Although he refuse to go into detail, it was obvious Jenkins had a “bone to pick” with the team that drafted him in the first round back in 2008. Jenkins played well in the matchup but seemed to fade a bit as the game wore on. He ended the day with just two tackles and one pass defended.
The biggest Cowboy killer on Thursday was wide receiver Andre Holmes. It’s funny how much the Cowboys poured into and believed in this former Division II standout, only to have him blossom on another team. Although the fact that he was busted for using performance-enhancing drugs earlier this season could have had something to do with that. He definitely seemed more “enhanced” against the Cowboys as he finished his career day with seven receptions for 136 yards.
Other former Cowboys players like offensive guard Andre Gurode and linebacker Kevin Burnett helped the Raiders get a 14-point lead over Dallas in the second quarter. But the Cowboys rallied back and scored an unanswered 24-points up until the final minute of the game.
Although they didn’t quite get revenge on their former team, they surely made their point. Players like Holmes, Jenkins and Burnett have talent and are good players. Too bad things didn’t work out differently as Dallas might be a better team with them than without. Regardless, the Cowboys move one game closer to the playoffs as the Raiders move farther away.