Where: Cowboys Stadium, Arlington, Texas (turf, indoors/outdoors)
When: Sunday, Nov. 18, 1 p.m. (Fox)
Spread: Cowboys by 8
Forecast: indoors/outdoors (clear, temperatures in the mid-60s)
Records: Cowboys (4-5); Browns (2-7)
Past results: Two most recent meetings -- Sept. 7, 2008: Cowboys 28, Browns 10; Sept. 19, 2004: Cowboys 19, Browns 12. Series record: Browns hold 17-12 edge.
What matters: This will be a game where special teams might play a major role. The Browns aren't exceptional on offense or defense but have solid play in the kicking game, thanks largely to dynamic return specialist Josh Cribbs. The Browns are second in the NFL in both kickoff and punt return average. The Cowboys have struggled at times this year on special teams, yielding a kickoff return for a score against Baltimore and a blocked punt against Seattle. But the Cowboys did have a big punt return for a touchdown last week with Dwayne Harris, who has been a big spark the last two weeks.
Who matters: With RB DeMarco Murray expected to miss his fifth straight game with a sprained foot, the Cowboys are once again relying on Felix Jones to handle the load in the running game. While Jones rushed for 71 yards last week, he arguably had his best game of the season; he added 22 yards in the passing game, including a nifty 11-yard touchdown catch. Against the Browns, who rank 27th in the NFL in run defense, Jones will need to keep the chains moving both in the running and passing game.
Key matchups: Two of the best in the NFL at their respective positions will be squaring off when the Browns have the ball. Left tackle Joe Thomas is a perennial Pro Bowler and can be dominant. The same has been said regarding Cowboys' pass-rusher DeMarcus Ware. The Browns can't afford to give Thomas much help and rarely need to, so there should be quite the battle all day between Thomas and Ware, who has 9.5 sacks this season through nine games.
Injuries of note: The Cowboys are expecting to be without Murray (foot), center Ryan Cook (knee) and cornerback Mike Jenkins (back), who are all listed as doubtful. Losing Kenyon Coleman (triceps) for the season is a big blow to the run defense, and it forces Marcus Spears into action.
Inside stuff: These are both third-quarter teams. The Cowboys have been outscored in all other quarters this year except the third, where they have a 54-45 advantage. The Browns have a 39-37 scoring edge in the third quarter and 57-52 edge in the fourth. However, Cleveland has been outscored 122-73 in the first half, so coming out of halftime should be big for both teams.
Stat you should know: Tony Romo improved his November record to 20-3 since becoming the starting quarterback in 2006. But he's even more impressive at home, winning all 13 games in the month of November at either Cowboys Stadium or Texas Stadium. More than the wins, Romo has 32 touchdown passes to just eight interceptions.
Looking ahead: The Cowboys have a quick turnaround with the upcoming Thanksgiving Day game against the Redskins just four days after playing the Browns, who will be the first opponent of three straight home games for the Cowboys.
Prediction: Cowboys 27, Browns 19