It's yet another schedule change for the NFL fueled by a COVID-19 outbreak, and while it doesn't involve the Dallas Cowboys, it does impact them indirectly. While they ready to face the Washington Football Team on Thanksgiving afternoon with hopes of re-securing the No. 1 seat in the NFC East, their Week 13 opponent -- the Baltimore Ravens -- is caught in a maelstrom of positive COVID-19 tests that have seen several players moved to the reserve list and several staffers being forced into quarantine.
Initially, the NFL had not opted to make changes to the Ravens' matchup with the Pittsburgh Steelers, and the former had even made plans to potentially travel to Eastern Pennsylvania, but that plan was axed by the league's front office. The AFC North clash initially scheduled for Thanksgiving evening has now been moved to Sunday, with no formal time announced yet.
This means the Ravens, who had an entire week to prepare for the Cowboys, will now have only three days to do so. That will make things interesting as far as game odds go, along with fantasy football lineups having already been shaken up by the Ravens players who must now clear COVID-19 protocol before they return to the field. Between this and the rescheduled game, there could be a fortuitous outcome for a win-needy Cowboys team -- particularly if Dallas continues to improve and Baltimore continues to struggle.
The latter has now lost three of their last four contests and are looking to bounce back against an undefeated Steelers team that barely escaped North Texas with a win in Week 9. The Ravens are being humbled as of late, and the Cowboys want to keep that trend alive, assuming the Steelers do as well on Sunday.
It's a rare interconference clash between the Cowboys and Ravens, one that happens only once every four years and not since 2016. They own the series record with a 4-1 mark, Dak Prescott being the quarterback to end the losing streak for Dallas in 2016. Prescott isn't running out of the locker room on Dec. 3 though, but Dez Bryant will, albeit for the Ravens. His signing with Baltimore added instant intrigue to this matchup, and if he's made active against his former team -- something that's expected to happen -- he's hoping to do to the Cowboys on Thanksgiving what he did for the Cowboys the last time they met the Ravens.
Bryant had six catches for 80 yards and two receiving touchdowns, and he has plenty of motivation to punctuate his NFL comeback against Dallas. His prep time has been cut in half though, due to the postponement against the Steelers, so advantage Cowboys.
At least in theory.