It's no secret that here at the TSFJ family, we have three distinct factions when it comes to NFL fandom. There are the Dallas Cowboys fans — Justin Tinsley, Kenny Masenda, Joe Simmons, Carden Hedelt. There are the Philadelphia Eagles fans — Mark Trible, Esau Howard, Dillon Friday, Joe Boland. And then there is everyone else.
So when the 2014 NFL regular-season schedule came out and a date between the Eagles and Cowboys was announced for Thanksgiving Day, well, we knew it'd be a Turkey Day to remember. And of course, given the trash-talking nature between the two fan bases, both here and everywhere else, we couldn't let this most joyous of holidays go by without a little pregame back and forth.
I'm so thankful for the hate this rivalry breeds, because every now and then, we all need to learn to hate in an unharmful way. And I'm thankful that the TSFJ fam can put our fan allegiance difference aside for all but a few Sundays (or Thursdays or Mondays) a year. This Thanksgiving is not one of those times. It is a time for pure, unadulterated disgust for one another.
So while you're prepping the turkey and stuffing, sit back and enjoy a little good-natured trash talk between the biggest of NFL rivals, with the winner of Thursday evening's matchup claiming sole possession of first place in the NFC East. (And go Birds! It is Turkey Day, after all.) — Rev
That's what the Eagles-Cowboys rivalry represents to me. It's part-sentimental, part-metaphorical.
It's the first game I truly remember watching as an Eagles fan, when the defense stopped Emmitt Smith not once but twice on 4th-and-1 in Cowboys territory. That will always be etched in my mind.
The bigger reason it mattered is because it summed up the rivalry. Dallas was in the midst of a Super Bowl run, one of which us Birds fans haven't had. But it didn't matter on that day, nor does the Cowboys' championship matter to us when we talk about that game. I think at this point, being an Eagles fan involves the idea we won't win the Super Bowl. I don't know how anyone can root for them if not; it seems too punishing to endure.
Barry Switzer's idea to go for it in the game's final minutes in his own territory — not once, but twice — well, that highlighted the theme many of us have of the Cowboys. America's Team by name alone shows the arrogance and uppity nature of these folks. It's alWAYS as if there's nothing better in the world than to shut them up for a week or two. Or in last year's case, an entire offseason. — Mark Trible
Philly was the projected favorite to walk away with the division, and the Cowboys were the Cowboys … meaning they're always relevant in some fashion, but their record always isn't.
Fast-forward several months and the Giants are out of contention (but still boast one helluva moment thanks to Odell Beckham's all-time great catch) and the Bob Griffin III era in Landover, Maryland, appears to be on life support. Meanwhile, the Cowboys and Eagles are neck-and-neck for the division. So, yes, the game means something far beyond a rivalry. Playoff implications are on the line as well as the eternally important trophy of bragging rights.
Root for the Cowboys because why would any sane individual root for the Eagles?
Root for the Cowboys because they have Tony Romo, American role model.
Root for the Cowboys because it's Thanksgiving and Dallas W's always make the food taste better.
Root for the Cowboys because there's always the lurking possibility of a Mark Sanchez Butt Fumble. And who doesn't want to see history repeat itself?!
Root for the Cowboys not to kick anything within a 15-yard vicinity of Darren Sproles because good blood pressure is vital to the soul.
Root for the Cowboys because Meek Mill is still locked up.
Root for the Cowboys because ... well, just don't root for the Eagles.
Enjoy Turkey Day, folks. Enjoy the all-day football bonanza. Just remember, everyone's potato salad is NOT to be trusted and the team in green is not your friend. They have never been your friend. They will never be your friend. The city of Philadelphia is home to some of the greatest people and landmarks this country boasts ... just not the Eagles.
The crazy thing about all this is we'll be doing it again in two weeks. — Justin Tinsley
But when the topic is the Dallas Cowboys ... well, it gets more difficult. No one taught me to hate the Cowboys, even as I spent my youth in Southeastern Pennsylvania cheering for a dreadful Eagles team. I just developed a hatred over time that has never dissipated. In fact, it's grown as Dallas continues to hilariously shoot itself in the foot year after year, and yet fans, many of them with no connection to Texas, throw out the rings argument to counter any trash talk.
I saw the usually esteemed Kenny Massenda tweet that the Eagles have no championship history whatsoever.
Oh, right. The Eagles, a team with absolutely no championship history whatsoever.
— LaKenneth (@soulonice6) November 24, 2014
Well we have three more NFL Championships than the Cowboys, and as far as I'm concerned those three titles (1948-49, 1960) will have just as big an impact on Thursday's game as Dallas' Lombardis in the '90s. Interestingly enough, the Cowboys won't wear their throwbacks on Thanksgiving per tradition. The fans will be very confused. That's where they live — the past. — Dillon Friday
This is the first of two meetings between the teams over the next four weeks with the winner of the Thanksgiving game getting a nice advantage in the form of a one-game lead atop the NFC East. Both teams can, and will, benefit from a win.
A game of this magnitude tends to bring more pressure since so much is at stake, but when your team is the Dallas Cowboys, that comes with the territory. From the five Lombardi Trophies the Dallas Cowboys possess to the reach of our fan base, the Cowboys, in the words of The Great Roundball Philosopher Stephen Jackson, "make love to pressure." Sure, the lovemaking hasn't been the best in recent years, but we know what it's like.
The Philadelphia Eagles, on the other hand, have no idea what it's like to make love to pressure and come out on top, because they've never won a Lombardi in their miserable, insignificant existence nor does their fan base reach places far beyond anyone's wildest imagination. Sure, they have some cool players, and a couple of their players over the years are some of my favorites of all time, but the Eagles know absolutely nothing about true, modern-day championship success, and the only people who believe Lombardi success means anything are the people who have none.
I look forward to sitting in front of the television and watching the game that the entire country is fixated on. The Eagles can thank the Cowboys for those extra eyes that will be on the field and on the tube, because if the Eagles were the main attraction, no one would give a damn. — Kenny Masenda
Now I say two teams because even though they are NFC East rivals, Washington has never been relevant rivalry-wise even in a good year. When it comes to my Philadelphia Eagles, every chance to embarrass the Cowboys on a national stage is a personal holiday. That’s why it's only fitting that their first meeting this season is on Thanksgiving. It’s so perfect that I’m more excited about the matchup than the actual game.
Now about that game, which coincidentally is for the right to the NFC East throne at least for a week or two. I’m sure DeMarco Murray will do his thing, Romo will Romo (in a bad way) and Dez Bryant will routinely embarrass Cary Williams. That’s life, and some things are just a given. I’m realistic enough to admit the Cowboys have some bright spots, as few as they are. You see, I don’t get my joy out of the Eagles dismantling them on the field, and despite the occasional blown coverage play on defense, I’m pretty confident Philly has this in the bag. Now what I look forward to the most while I’m starting my eggnog binge over some deep fried turkey is watching the humbling of the Dallas Cowboys fanbase. It’s going to be hilarious watching the most arrogant group of loyalists in the country literally disappear in real time through social media. Every breakout run from Shady or Sproles, or timely play made by Malcolm Jenkins, will be met with so much bitterness and disgust I’m already smiling. It’s nothing to just win the game; my holiday will not be completely unless they’re completely embarrassed in their stadium for all of their miserable fans to see. That’s what I’ll be thankful for. — Esau Howard
They found ways to sign and draft players that I hold dear to me. Randall Cunningham, Terrell Owens and Michael Vick were all guys that in one way or another had an impact on my sports fandom.
However, rooting for the individual is far different than rooting for the team. My heart belongs in South Texas. I've been a Dallas Cowboys fan since 1977. I know that makes me old, but I have been around long enough to see my team win a few Super Bowls. Eagles fans can't say that. A part of me feels sad for the Eagles fans. They have had so many years of frustration. Many of them have lived their entire lives waiting for that first taste of Super Bowl glory. It has to be like going to the candy store with what you thought was enough money but the price just keeps going up, and they keep coming up short. I know that it has been a while since my team has worn the crown, but it is better to have been the king for a while than to just have been a member of the kings court for life. — Joe Simmons
Since Cowboys fans love to live the past so much — yet still can't get their facts straight on the Eagles and championships — let me give them a little history lesson. The last time these two teams met on Turkey Day some 25 years ago, Buddy Ryan's Eagles thrashed Jimmy Johnson's Cowboys 27-0. It was a Thanksgiving Day massacre. And since the Cowboys always seem to believe history will repeat itself — despite Dallas' far inferiority since those championships 20 years ago — take note of that. Then go back to your lazy "RINGZ" argument — the most tired and least thoughtful weapon in the arsenal — when the Eagles throw down another Thanksgiving beating on the team that's used to playing on Turkey Day. Oh, and go check your history while you're at it. Because the least you can do while making uninformed arguments about the Eagles and their empty trophy case is get the facts straight. You shouldn't need a fact-checker for your trash talk. See you fellas for dessert. — Rev
All this hate makes me smile
Seeing both of these teams finding a way to lose would make me smile.
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