This matchup is perhaps the most highly anticipated game slated for 2011's Christmas weekend. The Cowboys and Eagles are each fighting for their spot in the playoffs, and that makes for great watching. It is tough to argue that the Philadelphia Eagles have had anything but the most startling roller coaster of a season in recent memory; after the self-proclaimed Dream Team got off to a shockingly poor start, virtually everyone had written the Eagles out of the playoffs, and yet, they are still not mathematically eliminated from the NFC playoff picture. With a win in each of the final two games, and a little help from their inter-division rivals, Andy Reid's Eagles have a shot at winning the NFC East. Meanwhile, the Cowboys simply need to hold off the advancing Eagles and Giants to win the division; their playoff destiny is completely in their hands.
This could be a very high scoring affair; Tony Romo has improved drastically as the season has progressed, silencing critics that were clamoring for his removal from the starting role. He faces an Eagles team that has struggled on defense all season. Vick, hampered all season by injuries to both himself and his starting receiving corps, showed us last week just how potent a well-balanced Eagles attack can truly be. This week, the Eagles bring Vick and company into Jerry Jones' billion-dollar playpen with the hope of dominating America's Team for the second time this season. Much like the Eagles, the Cowboys defense has failed to live up to their preseason hype; Rob Ryan's defense has mostly proven ineffective, and frequently puts the Cowboys' Tony Romo in tough spots. With a win, the Eagles are one step closer to punching their ticket to the playoffs, contrary to what early-season projections would have suggested.
There is a plethora of offensive players to target for your fantasy football starting lineup from both teams in this game. Players like Michael Vick, Lesean McCoy and Jason Witten start for you every week, but there are other former must-starts that need to once again be considered for your lineup; Desean Jackson is the prime example of this. After repeatedly demonstrating that he had lost his spirit to play, Jackson has begun to show that he once again has his head on straight. If this is the case, and it certainly appears to be, Jackson could be one of the top scorers in this game. Jackson's counterpart from the Cowboys, Miles Austin, is another old favorite that has returned to form. With his hamstring woes behind him, Austin seems poised to put up big weeks for the boys as they attempt to wrap up their season in route to the playoffs.