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Cowboys owner Jerry Jones.Robert Deutsch/Reuters

Never one to mince words, Jerry Jones has put Jason Garrett and his coaching staff on alert heading into what’s supposed to be a festive holiday.

Dallas plays its traditional U.S. Thanksgiving home game on Thursday, playing host to the Buffalo Bills. At 6-5 and coming off a very winnable game in New England that the Cowboys managed to mess up, Jones isn’t in a thankful mood. Maybe he should be considering the NFC East the Cowboys lead is a very weak division, especially with Philadelphia so damaged by injuries.

If the Cowboys serve up a turkey against a Buffalo squad that is 8-3 and in the thick of the AFC wild-card race, Jones’s mood could sour seriously.

“It’s frustrating to be reminded of the fundamentals of football and coaching that beat us out there,” Jones said. “There is no question [New England] put pressure on people returning the kicks and people handling the ball on special teams. There is no question that [Patriots coach Bill Belichick] used that to put some special emphasis on it. So yeah, I’m frustrated.”

The Cowboys, ranked 11th in the AP Pro32, are a seven-point favourite over No. 9 Buffalo. Dallas doesn’t rout anyone these days and could fall here.

COWBOYS, 20-16

KNOCKOUT POOL: Pittsburgh “Ducked” being Cincinnati’s first victim. Still on our boards are the PACKERS, who will rebound from that San Francisco debacle.

No. 15 Oakland (plus 10) at No. 8 Kansas City

Raiders fell into a trap game last week. They’ll be focused enough for key AFC West match.


No. 21 Los Angeles Chargers (minus 2½) at No. 28 Denver

Is Philip Rivers ready for retirement? Sure has looked that way recently.


No. 20 Chicago (minus 2½) at No. 27 Detroit (Thursday)

Watch the parade, do the cooking, play some backyard ball instead of watching this.

BEARS, 17-10

No. 5 New Orleans (minus 7) at No. 26 Atlanta (Thursday)

The Falcons went to Big Easy and romped. Payback.

SAINTS, 36-21

No. 2 New England (minus 3) at No. 10 Houston

Patriots are vulnerable, but Bill O’Brien’s team tends to disappear against New England.


No. 3 San Francisco (plus 6) at No. 1 Baltimore

That stunning Lamar Jackson-led show on Monday night sure impressed oddsmakers.

RAVENS, 27-24

No. 6 Minnesota (plus 3) at No. 4 Seattle (Monday night)

Pretty even game – except for coaching matchup.


No. 13 Los Angeles Rams (minus 3) at No. 24 Arizona

What was that we saw – or didn’t see – from Rams against Ravens?

RAMS, 24-20

No. 19 Cleveland (minus 2) at No. 16 Pittsburgh

Easy remaining schedule has Browns thinking playoff run. But they can’t stumble here.

BROWNS, 17-13

No. 7 Green Bay (minus 6½) at No. 31 New York Giants

Not sure anyone on the Giants’ D could start for Niners, who plagued Aaron Rodgers last week.

PACKERS, 30-14

No. 30 Washington (plus 10) at No. 18 Carolina

Big spread for slumping team such as Panthers. We’ll buy into it.


No. 14 Tennessee (plus 2½) at No 12 Indianapolis

Major matchup in AFC South, with loser in trouble in the playoff chase.

COLTS, 24-23

No. 17 Philadelphia (minus 9) at No. 29 Miami

Eagles too banged-up to be favoured by nine over Miami Hurricanes, let alone the Dolphins.

EAGLES, 20-13

No. 23 Tampa Bay (plus 1) at No. 25 Jacksonville

A Super Sunshine State matchup? Not exactly.

JAGUARS, 21-19

No. 22 New York Jets (minus 3½) at No. 32 Cincinnati

Jets get their fourth straight victory, Bengals their 12th loss in row this season.

JETS, 30-22

2019 RECORD:

Last Week: 8-5-1 against spread, 9-5 straight up.

Season Totals: 93-80-2 against spread, 108-65-1 straight up.

Best Bet: 10-2 against spread, 10-2 straight up.

Upset special: 6-6 against spread, 6-6 straight up.

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