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Throwback Thursday: Redskins and Cowboys MNF Match-ups

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What is the background of this historic rivalry on Monday Night Football, and which way will the scales tip after they line up across from each other in a few days?

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Fight for Old DC: 1973 - 2014

Over the past 41 years of Monday Night Football games, it's kind of a challenge to tell apart the teams from Washington and Dallas.

Both teams have won eight of the 16 matches.  Both teams have four wins on the road and four wins at home.  Both teams have walked away as winners in four of the past eight Monday night games, dating back to 1993. Washington's average score per game is 17.4 points, edged only by Dallas' 18.8 average.

The similarities aren't limited to the way the outcomes of the scoreboards in DC and Texas, either.  In the 16 seasons when the teams met in prime time on Monday, both teams have two Super Bowl wins and one Super Bowl loss.  The Redskins have six winning seasons, and Cowboys have just a few more with nine.

Modern Day State of Affairs: December 7, 2015

The first place Redskins (it feels so nice to type those words...) face off against the last place Cowboys (it feels even nicer to type those words...) on Monday at FedEx Field, and the momentum seems to be with the home team.  Fans and players are riding high after a home stand against division opponent New York, and though the game wasn't perfect, the guys in burgundy and gold truly seemed to take to heart the message from their player's only meeting: it's time for everyone to step up and do his job.

The Redskins' defense seemed frustrated about not holding the Giants to a shutout, and they'll be primed to take their revenge against an offense unit that returns to being under the command of Matt Cassel after Tony Romo broke his collar bone again last week.  They'll still need to hold strong against Darren McFadden, who may not be Adrian Peterson, but who has the potential to challenge the struggling run defense of the burgundy and gold.

The offense, which still needs to improve its consistency and take advantage of opportunities to put points on the board after turnovers, has a chance this week to get Alfred Morris's legs churning.  Dallas is allowing, on average, 10 more yards per game on the ground (106) than the Redskins are usually gaining (96), but they are often holding opponents to 18 fewer yards passing (225) than the Redskins typically gain (243).  Kirk Cousins will need to make smart decisions to handle pressure from Greg Hardy (if he's back from injury) and avoid throws into tight windows and double coverage, like the few last week that should have been interceptions.

And the winner is:

The Washington Redskins, who will break the 8-8 MNF tied record.  It may not be a pretty game (there haven't been many of those this year for Washington), but I believe this team will show up, ready to compete against and beat "America's Team."