We are down to the final six weeks of the 2021 NFL season, and the NFC playoff race is very cloudy. Two NFC teams are looking to solidify playoff spots with the Dallas Cowboys taking on the New Orleans Saints tonight for Thursday Night Football. The game will kick off at 8:20 p.m ET on Fox and NFL Network. It will also stream on Amazon Prime, FoxSports.com, Fox Sports App, NFL App and the Yahoo Sports App.
The Cowboys (7-4) are in a good spot to clinch a postseason berth but need a win as they have lost three of their last four games. On Thanksgiving Day, the Cowboys lost to the Las Vegas Raiders in overtime, but they are still the only team in the NFC East with a winning record. The Cowboys will be without their head coach as Mike McCarthy tested positive for COVID-19 earlier this week. Defensive coordinator Dan Quinn will be the de facto head coach.
"I think understandably with Dan's experience, the challenge flag, the timeouts, the referee's meeting, there's just a lot of little things that go into it," McCarthy said, per ESPN. "You could have someone do it on a weekly basis but we'll spread that around. Kellen just needs to focus on the offense and calling the game and staying with that. John is also involved in some game management like most special teams coaches are. We have the network up top so that's something that won't change. So the biggest change is having Dan down on the field and just make sure he's getting the information he needs to make sound decisions."
The Saints (5-6) are in the hunt for a playoff spot as they are tied with the Washington Team, Minnesota Vikings and the Atlanta Falcons for seventh place. Like the Cowboys, the Saints have been struggling to find wins lately, losing their last four games. The offense will get a spark tonight as Taysom Hill is set to start at quarterback. Hill has been dealing with a torn plantar fascia on Nov. 14.
"I hope so," Hill said, per the Saints' official website. "I think that's kind of the question mark, where the last three weeks really have been unique for us in terms of going Sunday to Thursday, and then another Thursday, to where we've been trying to limit reps and time on the field, time on your feet and all that stuff.