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Dallas Cowboys

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Dallas Cowboys
Current season
Established 1960; 55 years ago (1960)
Play in AT&T Stadium
Arlington, Texas
Headquartered in Valley Ranch
Irving, Texas
Dallas Cowboys logo
Logo
League/conference affiliations

National Football League (1960–present)

Current uniform
Cowboys uniforms12.png
Team colors

Navy Blue, Silver, White, Royal Blue, Black [1][2]

                        
Mascot Rowdy
Personnel
Owner(s) Jerry Jones
President Jerry Jones
General manager Jerry Jones
Head coach Jason Garrett
Team history
  • Dallas Cowboys (1960–present)
Team nicknames
Championships

League championships (5)

Conference championships (10)

  • NFL Eastern: 1966, 1967
  • NFC: 1970, 1971, 1975, 1977, 1978, 1992, 1993, 1995

Division championships (22)

  • NFL Capitol: 1967, 1968, 1969
  • NFC East: 1970, 1971, 1972, 1973, 1976, 1977, 1978, 1979, 1981, 1985, 1992, 1993, 1994, 1995, 1996, 1998, 2007, 2009, 2014
Playoff appearances (31)
  • NFL: 1966, 1967, 1968, 1969, 1970, 1971, 1972, 1973, 1975, 1976, 1977, 1978, 1979, 1980, 1981, 1982, 1983, 1985, 1991, 1992, 1993, 1994, 1995, 1996, 1998, 1999, 2003, 2006, 2007, 2009, 2014
Home fields
(a.k.a. Cowboys Stadium (2009–2013))

The Dallas Cowboys are a professional American football team located in the Dallas-Fort Worth Metroplex. The team is a member of the Eastern Division of the National Football Conference (NFC) in the National Football League (NFL). They are headquartered in Valley Ranch in Irving, Texas. The team plays its home games at AT&T Stadium in Arlington, Texas, which finished construction in time for the 2009 season.[3] The Cowboys joined the NFL as a 1960 expansion team.[4] The team's national following might best be represented by its NFL record of consecutive home sell-outs. The Cowboys' streak of 160 sold-out regular and post-season games began in 1990, and included 79 straight sellouts at their former home, Texas Stadium, and 81 straight sell-outs on the road.[5] The franchise shares the record for most Super Bowl appearances (8) with the Pittsburgh Steelers and New England Patriots, corresponding to most NFC championships (8). The Cowboys won 5 of those, tying them with their NFC rivals, the San Francisco 49ers, both are second to Pittsburgh's record 6 Super Bowl championships.[6] The Cowboys are the only NFL team to record 20 straight winning seasons (1966–85), in which they only missed the playoffs twice (1974 and 1984), an NFL record that remains unchallenged.

The Cowboys, at approximately $3.2 billion, are the most valuable NFL franchise according to Forbes, and the most valuable sports team in the United States.[7] They are tied with soccer club FC Barcelona for the second-most in the world; only Real Madrid ($3.4b) is valued higher than the Cowboys.[8] They also generate $560 million in revenue, again the most of any NFL team.[9]

History

1960s

Prior to the formation of the Dallas Cowboys, there had not been an NFL team south of Washington, D.C. since the Dallas Texans folded in 1952. Oilman Clint Murchison Jr. had been trying to get an NFL expansion team in Dallas (as was Lamar Hunt – who ended up with an AFL franchise), but George Preston Marshall, owner of the Washington Redskins, had a monopoly in the South.

Murchison had tried to purchase the Washington Redskins from Marshall in 1958. An agreement was struck, but as the deal was about to be finalized, Marshall called for a change in terms. This infuriated Murchison and he called off the deal. Marshall then opposed any franchise for Murchison in Dallas. Since NFL expansion needed unanimous approval from team owners at that time, Marshall's position would prevent Murchison from joining the league.

Marshall had a falling out with the Redskins band leader Barnee Breeskin. Breeskin had written the music to the Redskins fight song "Hail to the Redskins" and Marshall’s wife had penned the lyrics. Breeskin owned the rights to the song and was aware of Murchison’s plight to get an NFL franchise. Angry with Marshall, Breeskin approached Murchison’s attorney to sell him the rights to the song before the expansion vote in 1959. Murchison purchased "Hail to the Redskins" for $2,500. Before the vote to award franchises in 1959, Murchison revealed to Marshall that he owned the song and Marshall could not play it during games. After a few Marshall expletives, Murchison gave the rights to "Hail to the Redskins" to Marshall for his vote, the lone one against Murchison getting a franchise at that time, and a rivalry was born.

1970s

From 1970 through 1979, the Cowboys won 105 regular season games, more than any other NFL franchise during that span.[10] In addition, they appeared in 5 and won two Super Bowls, at the end of the 1971 and 1977 regular seasons.

1980s

Danny White became the Cowboys' starting quarterback in 1980 after quarterback Roger Staubach retired. Despite going to 12-4 in 1980, the Cowboys came into the playoffs as a Wild Card team. In the opening round of the 1980-81 NFL playoffs they avenged their elimination from the prior year's playoffs by defeating the Rams. In the Divisional Round they squeaked by the Falcons 30-27. For the NFC Championship they were pitted against division rival Philadelphia, the team that won the division during the regular season. The Eagles captured their first conference championship and Super Bowl berth by winning 20-7.

1981 brought another division championship for the Cowboys. They entered the 1981-82 NFL playoffs as the number 2 seed. Their first game of the postseason saw them blowout and shutout Tampa Bay 38-0. For the Conference Title game they were pitted against the San Francisco 49ers, the number 1 seed. Despite having a late 4th quarter 27-21 lead, they would lose to the 49ers 28-21. 49ers quarterback Joe Montana led his team to an 89-yard game winning touchdown drive connecting to Dwight Clark in a play known as The Catch.

The 1982 season was shortened after a player strike. With a 6-3 record Dallas made it to the playoffs for the 8th consecutive season. As the number 2 seed for the 1982-83 NFL playoffs they eliminated the Buccaneers 30-17 in the Wild Card round and dispatched the Packers 37-26 in the Divisional round to advance to their 3rd consecutive Conference championship game. 3 times was not a charm for the Cowboys as they fell 31-17 to division rival and eventual Super Bowl XVII champions the Washington Redskins.

For the 1983 season the Cowboys went 12-4 and made it once again to the playoffs but were defeated at home in the Wild Card by the Rams 24-17. Prior to the 1984 season, H.R. "Bum" Bright purchased the Dallas Cowboys from Clint Murchison, Jr. Dallas posted a 9-7 record that season but missed the playoffs for the first time in 10 seasons. After going 10–6 in 1985 and winning a division title, the Cowboys were blown out in the Divisional round at home to the Rams 20-0.

Hard times came for the organization as they went 7–9 in 1986 , 7–8 in 1987, and 3–13 in 1988. During this time period Bright became disenchanted with the team. During the Savings and Loan crisis, the team and Mr. Bright's Savings and Loan were taken over by the FSLIC. During an embarrassing home loss to Atlanta in 1987, Bright told the media that he was "horrified" at coach Tom Landry's play calling. The FSLIC forced Mr. Bright to sell the Cowboys to Jerry Jones on February 25, 1989.

Jones immediately fired Tom Landry, the only head coach in franchise history, replacing him with University of Miami head coach Jimmy Johnson. With the first pick in the draft, the Cowboys selected UCLA quarterback Troy Aikman. Later that same year, they would trade veteran running back Herschel Walker to the Minnesota Vikings for five veteran players and eight draft choices. Although the Cowboys finished the 1989 season with a 1–15 record, their worst in almost 30 years, "The Trade" later allowed Dallas to draft a number of impact players to rebuild the team.

1990s

Johnson quickly returned the Cowboys to the NFL's elite. Skillful drafts added fullback Daryl Johnston and center Mark Stepnoski in 1989, running back Emmitt Smith in 1990, defensive tackle Russell Maryland and offensive tackle Erik Williams in 1991, and safety Darren Woodson in 1992. The young talent joined holdovers from the Landry era such as wide receiver Michael Irvin, guard Nate Newton, linebacker Ken Norton Jr., and offensive lineman Mark Tuinei, defensive lineman Jim Jeffcoat, and veteran pickups such as tight end Jay Novacek and defensive end Charles Haley.

Five-time World Champions Mural

Things started to look for the franchise in 1990. On Week 1 Dallas won their first home game since September 1988 when they defeated the San Diego Chargers 17-14. They would go 2-7 in their next 9 games but would win 4 of their last 6 games to finish the season with a 4th place 7-9 record.

Coming into 1991 the Cowboys replaced offensive coordinator Dave Shula with Norv Turner; the Cowboys raced to a 6–5 start then defeated the previously-unbeaten Redskins despite injury to Troy Aikman. Backup Steve Beuerlein took over and the Cowboys and finished 11–5. In the Wild Card round they defeated the Bears 17-13 for the Cowboys first playoff win since 1982. In the Divisional round their season ended in a 38–6 playoff rout by the Lions.

In 1992 Dallas set a team record for regular season wins with a 13–3 mark. They started off the season by defeating the defending Super Bowl Champion Washington Redskins 23-10. Going into the playoffs as the number 2 seed they had a first round bye before facing division rival the Philadelphia Eagles. The Cowboys won that game 34-10 to advance to the NFC Conference Championship game for the first time in 10 years. They were pitted against the San Francisco 49ers, the number 1 seed. On January 17, 1993 the Cowboys went to Candlestick Park and defeated the 49ers 30-20 to clinch their first Super Bowl berth since 1978. Dallas would go on to defeat the Buffalo Bills 52–17 in Super Bowl XXVII, during which they forced a record nine turnovers. Johnson became the first coach to claim a national championship in college football and a Super Bowl victory in professional football.

Despite starting the 1993 season 0-2, they would once again defeat the Buffalo Bills in Super Bowl XXVIII, 30–13 (becoming the first team in NFL history to win a Super Bowl after starting 0-2). Dallas would finish the regular season 12-4 as the number 1 seed of the NFC. They defeated the Green Bay Packers 27-17 in the divisional round. The NFC Conference Championship would be a rematch of the Cowboys and the 49ers however this time the game was in Dallas. The Cowboys won 38-21. Dallas sent a then-NFL record 11 players to the Pro Bowl in 1993: Troy Aikman, safety Thomas Everett, Irvin, Johnston, Maryland, Newton, Norton, Novacek, Smith, Stepnoski and Williams.

Dallas Cowboys championship banners inside AT&T Stadium

Only weeks after Super Bowl XXVIII, however, friction between Johnson and Jones culminated in Johnson stunning the football world by announcing his resignation. Jones then hired former University of Oklahoma head coach Barry Switzer to replace Johnson. The Cowboys finished 12–4 in 1994. They once again clinched a first round bye and defeated Green Bay 35-9 in the Divisional Round. They would miss the Super Bowl however after losing to the San Francisco 49ers in the NFC Championship Game, 38–28.

Prior to the start of 1995 season Jerry Jones lured All-Pro cornerback Deion Sanders away from San Francisco. Dallas started the season 4-0 including shutting out their division rival New York Giants 35-0 at Giants Stadium to open their season. Emmitt Smith would set an NFL record with 25 rushing touchdowns that season. They would end the season 12-4 and go into the playoffs as the number 1 seed. In the Divisional round they would dispatch their division rival Eagles 30-11 to advance to their 4th consecutive NFC Conference Championship Game. However this year they would play Green Bay. Dallas would win 38-27. In Super Bowl XXX the Cowboys defeated the Pittsburgh Steelers 27–17 at Sun Devil Stadium for their fifth Super Bowl championship. Switzer joined Johnson as the only coaches to win a college football national championship and a Super Bowl.

The glory days of the Cowboys were again beginning to dim as free agency, age and injuries began taking their toll. Star receiver Michael Irvin was suspended by the league for the first five games of 1996 following a drug-related arrest; he came back after the Cowboys started the season 2–3. They finished the regular season with a 10–6 record, won the NFC East title, and entered the playoffs as the number 3 seed in the NFC. They defeated Minnesota 40-15 in the Wild Card round but were eliminated in the Divisional round of the playoffs 26–17 by Carolina Panthers.

The Cowboys went 6–10 in 1997 (including losing their last 6 games of the season), with discipline and off-field problems becoming major distractions.[11] As a result, Switzer resigned as head coach in January 1998 and former Steelers offensive coordinator Chan Gailey was hired to take his place.

Gailey led the team to two playoff appearances with a 10–6 record in 1998 and an NFC East championship, but the Cowboys were defeated in the playoffs by the Arizona Cardinals 20–7.

In 1999 Dallas went 8-8 (during which Irvin suffered a career-ending spinal injury in a loss to the Philadelphia Eagles) ending in another playoff loss (this time to the Minnesota Vikings 27–10). Gailey was fired and became the first Cowboys coach who did not take the team to a Super Bowl.

2000–09

Defensive coordinator Dave Campo was promoted to head coach for the 2000 season. Prior to the season starting cornerback Deion Sanders was released after 5 seasons with the team. He would later sign with division rival Washington. In Week 1 they were blown out 41-14 by Philadelphia. That game was very costly when veteran quarterback Troy Aikman suffered a serious concussion which would ultimately end his career. Longtime NFL QB Randall Cunningham would fill in for Aikman for the rest of the season at QB. The Cowboys would finish the season in 4th place with a 5-11 record. The only highlights of 2000 would be Emmitt Smith having his 10th consecutive 1,000 yard rushing season and getting a season sweep over the Redskins.

2001 was another hard year in Dallas. Prior to the season starting Aikman was released from the team and he retired due to the concussions he had received. Jerry Jones would sign Tony Banks as a QB. Banks had been a starter for h-alf of the season the previous year for the Super Bowl Champion Baltimore Ravens before being benched. Jones would also draft QB Quincy Carter in the second round of that year's draft. However Banks would be released during the preseason. Ryan Leaf, Anthony Wright, and Clint Stoerner would all fill in at the quarterback position that season. Dallas would again finish at 5-11 however this year they would fall to last place of the NFC East. Despite these woes they were able to once again season sweep the Redskins, the 4th consecutive season.

Prior to the 2002 season Dallas would draft wide receiver Roy Williams with the 8th overall pick. The season started out low as the Cowboys lost to the expansion Houston Texans 19-10 on Week 1. By far the highlight of 2002 was on October 28, when during a home game against the Seattle Seahawks, Emmitt Smith broke the all-time NFL rushing record which was previously held by Walter Payton. Their Thanksgiving Day win over the Redskins was their 10th consecutive win against Washington. However that would be their final win of 2002. Dallas would lose their next 4 games to finish with another last place 5-11 record. The losing streak was punctuated with a Week 17 20-14 loss against Washington. That game would also be Smith's last game as a Cowboys player, as he was released during the offseason. Campo was immediately fired as head coach at the conclusion of the season.

Jones then lured Bill Parcells out of retirement to coach the Cowboys. The Cowboys became the surprise team of the 2003 season getting off to a hot 7-2 season. They would go 3-4 for the rest of the season however. They were able to win the division with a 10-6 record. However they would lose in the Wild Card round to eventual conference champion Carolina Panthers 29-10.

In 2004 Dallas was unable to replicate their 2003 success as they would have a 6-10 2nd place season. Quincy Carter was released during the preseason and was replaced at QB by Vinny Testaverde

Dallas got off to a hot 7-3 start for the 2005 season but would end the season in 3rd place with a 9-7 record. Prior to the season starting the Cowboys signed veteran Drew Bledsoe as a quarterback.

2006 was an interesting year for the Cowboys. Prior to the season Dallas signed free agent wide receiver Terrell Owens who was talented yet controversial. The Cowboys started the season 3-2. During a week 7 matchup against the Giants Bledsoe, who had been struggling since the start of the season, was pulled from the game and was replaced by backup Tony Romo. Romo was unable to salvage that game as Dallas would lose 38-22. However Romo was named the starter for team and went 5-1 in his first 6 games. Dallas would end the season with a 9-7 2nd-place finish. They were able to clinch the number 5 playoff seed. They traveled to play Seattle where the Seahawks won 21-20. After the season Parcells retired and was replaced as head coach by Wade Phillips.[12]

Dallas started off the 2007 season with a bang. They began the season with a 12-1 start including winning their first 5 games. Their only loss during that time span came against New England, whom would go undefeated until they lost in the Super Bowl. Despite dropping 2 of their last 3 regular season games, the Cowboys would clinch their first number 1 NFC seed in 12 years which also granted them a first round bye and homefield advantage throughout the playoffs. However they would lose in the Divisional Round 21-17 to the eventual Super Bowl Champion Giants.

In the tumultuous 2008 season, the Cowboys started off strong, going 3–0 for the second straight year, en route to a 4–1 start. However, things soon went downhill from there, as quarterback Tony Romo suffered a broken pinkie in an overtime loss to the Arizona Cardinals. With Brad Johnson and Brooks Bollinger playing as backups, Dallas went 1–2 during a three-game stretch. Romo's return showed promise, as Dallas went 3–0. However, injuries mounted during the season with the team losing several starters for the year, such as Kyle Kosier, Felix Jones, safety Roy Williams and punter Mat McBriar, and several other starters playing with injuries.[13] Entering December, the 8–4 Cowboys underperformed, finishing 1–3. They failed to make the playoffs after losing at Philadelphia in the final regular season game which saw the Eagles reach the playoffs instead.

On May 2, 2009, the Dallas Cowboys' practice facility collapsed during a wind storm. The collapse left twelve Cowboys players and coaches injured. The most serious injuries were special teams coach Joe DeCamillis, who suffered fractured cervical vertebrae and had surgery to stabilize fractured vertebrae in his neck, and Rich Behm, the team's 33-year-old scouting assistant, who was permanently paralyzed from the waist down after his spine was severed.

The 2009 season started on a positive with a road win against Tampa Bay, but fortunes quickly changed as Dallas fell to a 2–2 start. In week five, with starting wide receiver Roy Williams sidelined by injury, receiver Miles Austin got his first start of the season and had a record setting day (250 yards receiving and 2 TDs) to help lead Dallas to an overtime win over Kansas City. Following their bye week, Dallas went on a three-game winning streak including wins over Atlanta and NFC East division rival Philadelphia. Despite entering December with a record of 8–3, Dallas lost its slim grip on 1st place in the division with losses to the New York Giants and San Diego. Talks of past December collapses resurfaced, and another collapse in 2009 seemed validated. However, the Dallas team surged in the final three weeks of the season with a 24–17 victory at the Superdome, ending New Orleans' previously unbeaten season in week 15. For the first time in franchise history, Dallas posted back-to-back shutouts when they beat division rivals Washington (17–0) and Philadelphia (24–0) to end the season. In the process, the Cowboys clinched their second NFC East title in three years as well as the third seed in the NFC Playoffs. Six days later, in the wild-card round of the playoffs, Dallas played the Eagles in a rematch of week 17. The Cowboys defeated the Eagles for the first Cowboys' post-season win since the 1996 season, ending a streak of six consecutive NFL post-season losses. Dallas ended their playoff run after a hard divisional playoff loss to the Minnesota Vikings.

2010–13

After beginning the 2010 season at 1–7, Phillips was fired as head coach and was replaced by offensive coordinator Jason Garrett as the interim head coach.[14] The Cowboys finished the season 6–10.

With the 9th pick of the 1st round of the 2011 draft, the Cowboys selected USC tackle Tyron Smith.

To start the 2011 season the Cowboys played the New York Jets on a Sunday night primetime game in New York, on September 11, 2011. The Cowboys held the lead through most of the game, until a fumble, blocked punt, and interception led to the Jets coming back to win the game. In week 2 Dallas traveled to San Francisco to play the 49ers. In the middle of the 2nd quarter, while the Cowboys trailed 10–7, Tony Romo suffered a rib injury and was replaced by Jon Kitna. Kitna threw 1 Touchdown and 2 interceptions until Romo returned in the 3rd quarter as Dallas trailed 17–7. Romo then threw 3 touchdown passes to Miles Austin as the Cowboys rallied to send the game into overtime. On the Cowboys opening possession after 49ers punt, Romo found WR Jesse Holley on a 78-yard pass, which set up the game winning field goal by rookie kicker Dan Bailey.

Dallas ended the season 8-8. They were in a position to win the NFC East but lost to the Giants in a Week 17 primetime Sunday Night game on NBC which allowed New York to win the division. The Giants would go on to win Super Bowl XLVI.

The Cowboys started off the 2012 season season on a high note by defeating the defending Super Bowl Champion New York Giants 24-17 on the opening night of the season. They would hover around the .500 mark for the majority of the season. They lost a close Week 6 game to eventual Super Bowl XXVII Champion Baltimore Ravens 31-29 at M&T Bank Stadium in Baltimore.

Going into Week 17 they found themselves once again one win away from winning the division. Standing in their way was the Redskins who had beat them on Thanksgiving at AT&T Stadium and whom were also one win away from their first division title since 1999. Led by Robert Griffin III the Redskins defeated the Cowboys at home 28-18. Dallas once again finished the season 8-8.

In the 2013 season Dallas started off by defeating the Giants for the second straight year this time 36-31. It was the first time since AT&T Stadium had opened back in 2009 that the Cowboys were able to defeat New York at home. The win was punctuated by Brandon Carr returning an Eli Manning interception to a touchdown late in the 4th quarter.

For the third straight year Dallas once again found themselves stuck in the .500 area. In Week 5 they lost a shootout to eventual AFC Champion Denver Broncos 51-48. They battled it out with Philadelphia for control of the division throughout the season. In December however they lost 2 crucial back to back games to Chicago and Green Bay. They were very successful in division games having a 5-0 division record heading into another Week 17 showdown for the NFC East crown against the Eagles. That included beating Washington 24-23 on Week 16 thanks to late game heroics of Tony Romo. However Romo received a severe back injury in that game which prematurely ended his season. The Cowboys called upon backup QB Kyle Orton to lead them into battle on the final week of the season. Orton was unsuccessful who threw a game ending interception to the Eagles which allowed Philly to win 24-22. Dallas ended the year at 8-8 for the third year in a row. The only difference of this 8-8 ending compared to the others was that Dallas ended the season in second place compared to the 2 previous 3rd-place finishes.

2014–present

To start off the 2014 season Dallas began by losing to San Francisco 28-17. After that they went on a 6-game winning streak. The highlight of this streak was on Week 6 by defeating the heavily favored defending Super Bowl Champion Seahawks in Seattle 30-23. This was Seattle's 2nd loss at home in the past 3 seasons. The streak was ended by division rival Washington on Week 8 where the Redskins won in overtime 20-17. Romo's back became once again injured in that game. He would miss the next week where the Cowboys lost at home to the Arizona Cardinals 28-17 where backup QB Brandon Weeden started. Romo would return in Week 9 to lead a 31-17 victory of Jacksonville which was played in London, England as part of the NFL International Series.

Dallas played into their traditional Thanksgiving home game, this time against division rival Philadelphia. Both teams were vying for first place in the division with identical 8-3 records. The Eagles got off to a fast start and the Cowboys were unable to catch up, losing 33-10. They would rebound the next week where on the road Thursday night game they defeated Chicago 41-28 for their 9th win of the year to clinch their first winning season since 2009. This was the first time that Dallas played on back to back Thursdays. Week 15 was a rematch against 1st place Philadelphia. This time it was the Cowboys who got off to a fast start going up 21-0. Then the Eagles put up 24 answered points but Dallas came back to win 38-27 to go into first place for the first time in the season and improve to 10-4. Going into their Week 16 matchup at home against Indianapolis, Dallas was in a position to clinch their first division title since 2009 by defeating the Colts thanks to the Eagles losing that week to the Redskins. They would not disappoint as they blew out the Colts 42-7 to become the 2014 NFC East Champions, eliminating the Eagles from the playoffs. Dallas would end the regular season with a 12-4 record and an 8-0 away record when they won on the road against Washington 44-17. They would also finish December 4-0 which was huge for the Cowboys since they had struggled in the recent years in the month of December.

On January 4, 2015, the Cowboys, as the number 3 seed, hosted the number 6 seed Detroit Lions in the wild card round of the NFL playoffs. In the game, the Lions got off to a hot start, going up 14-0 in the first quarter. Dallas initially struggled on both sides of the ball. However, towards the end of the second quarter Romo threw a 76-yard touchdown pass to Terrance Williams. Matt Prater of the Lions would kick a field goal before halftime to go up 17-7. Dallas came out swinging to start the second half by picking off Detroit quarterback Matthew Stafford on the first play of the third quarter. However, the Cowboys failed to capitalize on the turnover, as Dan Bailey missed a field goal during Dallas's ensuing drive. Detroit then kicked another field goal to make the score 20-7. A DeMarco Murray touchdown later in that quarter closed the gap to 20-14. A 51-yard Bailey field goal almost 3 minutes into the fourth quarter trimmed the Cowboys' deficit to 3. The Lions got the ball back and started driving down the field. On 3rd down-and-1 of that Lions drive, Stafford completed a 17-yard pass to Lions tight end Brandon Pettigrew. The play was initially flagged as defensive pass interference against Cowboys linebacker Anthony Hitchens; however, the penalty was then nullified by the officiating crew. The Cowboys got the ball back on their 41-yard line and had a successful 59-yard drive which was capped off by a 8-yard touchdown pass from Romo to Williams to give the Cowboys their first lead of the game at 24-20. The Lions got the ball back with less than 2:30 to play in regulation. Stafford fumbled the ball at the 2 minute mark. The fumble was recovered by Cowboys defensive end DeMarcus Lawrence, who then fumbled the ball which was recovered by the Lions. Lawrence would redeem himself by sacking Stafford on a 4th down-and-3 play. The sack led to Stafford fumbling the ball again, which Lawrence recovered to seal the game for the Cowboys, who won 24-20. This was the first time in franchise playoff history that that Dallas had been down by 10 or more points at halftime and rallied to win the game. The following week, the Cowboys traveled to Lambeau Field in Green Bay, Wisconsin to play the Packers in the divisional round. Despite having a 14-7 halftime lead, the Cowboys fell to the Packers 26-21, thus ending their season. The season ended on an overturned call of a completed catch by Dez Bryant. The catch was challenged by the Packers, and the referees overturned the call because of the "Calvin Johnson rule."

During the 2015 offseason the Cowboys allowed running back DeMarco Murray to become a free agent. Murray signed with the division rival Philadelphia Eagles. On July 15th wide receiver Dez Bryant signed a 5-year, $70 million contract.

Logos and uniforms

The script logo.

The Dallas Cowboys' blue star logo–representative of Texas as "The Lone Star State"–is one of the best known team logos in professional sports. The blue star originally was a solid shape until a white line and blue border was added in 1964. The logo has remained the same since. Today, the blue star has been extended to not only the Dallas Cowboys, but owner Jerry Jones' AFL team, the Dallas Desperados that have a similar logo based on the Cowboys. The blue star also is used on other entries like an imaging facility and storage facility.

Uniforms

The Dallas Cowboys' white home jersey has royal blue (PMS 287 C) solid socks, numbers, lettering, and two stripes on the sleeves outlined in black. The home pants, according to the Dallas Cowboys official media guide, are a common metallic silver-green color (PMS 8280 C) that help bring out the blue in the uniform. The navy (PMS 289 C) road jerseys (nicknamed the "Stars and Stripes" jersey) have white lettering and numbers with navy pinstripes. A white/gray/white stripe are on each sleeve as well as the collared V-neck, and a Cowboys star logo is placed upon the stripes. A "Cowboys" chest crest is directly under the NFL shield. The away pants are a pearlish metallic-silver color (PMS 8180 C) and like the home pants, enhance the navy in the uniforms. The team uses a serifed font for the lettered player surnames on the jersey nameplates.[1][2]

The team's helmets are also a unique silver with a tint of blue known as "Metallic Silver Blue" (PMS 8240 C) and have a blue/white/blue vertical stripe placed upon the center of the crown. The Cowboys also include a unique, if subtle, feature on the back of the helmet: a blue strip of Dymo tape with the player's name embossed, placed on the white portion of the stripe at the back of the helmet.

Uniform history

When the Dallas Cowboys franchise debuted in 1960, the team's uniform included a white helmet adorned with a simple blue star and a blue-white-blue stripe down the center crown. The team donned blue jerseys with white sleeves and a small blue star on each shoulder for home games and the negative opposite for away games. Their socks also had two horizontal white stripes overlapping the blue.

In 1964 the Cowboys opted for a simpler look (adopting essentially the team's current uniform) by changing their jersey/socks to one solid color with three horizontal stripes on the sleeves; the white jersey featured royal blue stripes with a narrow black border, the royal blue jersey white stripes with the same black outline. The star-shouldered jerseys were eliminated; "TV" numbers appeared just above the jersey stripes. The new helmet was silverblue, with a blue-white-blue tri-stripe down the center (the middle white stripe was thicker). The blue "lone star" logo was retained, but with a white border setting it off from the silverblue. The new pants were silverblue, with a blue-white-blue tri-stripe. In 1964 the NFL allowed teams to wear white jerseys at home; several teams did so, and the Cowboys have worn white at home ever since, except on certain "throwback" days.

In 1966, the team modified the jerseys, which now featured only two sleeve stripes, slightly wider; the socks followed the same pattern. In 1967 the "lone star" helmet decal added a blue outline to the white-bordered star, giving the logo a bigger, bolder look. The logo and this version of the uniform has seen little change to the present day.

The only notable changes in the last 40 years were:

  • from 1970–1973 when the "TV" numbers were moved from the shoulders to the sleeves above the stripes
  • from 1982–1988 the pants featured a white uniform number in an elliptical blue circle worn near the hip.
  • the removal of the indented serifs on the front and back jersey numbers in the early 1980s (seen currently on the throwback jersey)
  • In 1980 the blue jersey was rendered in a slightly darker shade than the 1964–79 version; from 1981–1994 the dark jerseys sported numbers that were gray with white borders and a blue pinstripe. The stripes on the sleeves and socks also used the same gray with white border scheme (sans navy pinstripe).
  • Player names on jersey backs, which appeared in 1970, were originally in block-letter style; from 1982 onward the names were slightly smaller and in footed, "serif" style.
  • the 1996 addition of the word "Cowboys" in the center of the neckline which lasted until 1998 on the white jersey but currently remains on the blue jersey.

During the 1976 season, the blue-white-blue stripe on the crown of the helmets were temporarily changed to red-white-blue to commemorate the United States' bicentennial anniversary.

The "throwback" NFL 75th Anniversary uniform was introduced in 1994.

In 1994, the NFL celebrated their 75th Anniversary, and the Dallas Cowboys celebrated their back-to-back Super Bowl titles by unveiling a white "Double-Star" jersey on Thanksgiving Day. This jersey was used for special occasions and was worn throughout the 1994–1995 playoffs. During the same season, the Cowboys also wore their 1960–63 road jersey with a silver helmet for one game as part of a league-wide "throwback" policy.

During the 1995 season, the team wore the navy "Double-Star" jersey for games at Washington and Philadelphia and permanently switched to solid color socks (royal blue for the white uniform, and navy blue for the dark uniform). The navy "Double-Star" jersey was not seen again until the NFL's Classic Throwback Weekend on Thanksgiving Day 2001–2003.

In 2004, the Cowboys resurrected their original 1960–1963 uniform on Thanksgiving Day. This uniform became the team's alternate or "third jersey" and was usually worn at least once a year, primarily Thanksgiving Day. Two exceptions were when the Cowboys wore their normal white uniforms on Thanksgiving in 2007 and 2008. While the team didn't wear the throwback uniform exactly on Thanksgiving Day in those two years, Dallas wore them on a date around Thanksgiving for those two years. In 2007 Dallas wore the throwback uniform on November 29, 2007 against the Green Bay Packers. In 2008 Dallas wore the throwback uniform on November 23, 2008 against the San Francisco 49ers. The team went back to wearing this uniform at home on Thanksgiving Day in 2009 while their opponent was the Oakland Raiders who wore their AFL Legacy Weekend throwbacks. Dallas wore this alternate uniform on October 11, 2009 as part of one of the NFL's AFL Legacy Weekends when they traveled to Kansas City to play the Chiefs who were sporting their AFL Dallas Texans' uniforms. This created a rare game in which neither team wore a white jersey and the first time the Cowboys wore the alternative uniform as a visiting team. The 1960–1963 uniform may also be used on other special occasion. Other instances include the 2005 Monday Night game against the Washington Redskins when the team inducted Troy Aikman, Emmitt Smith, and Michael Irving into the Cowboys Ring of Honor, and the 2006 Christmas Day game against the Philadelphia Eagles.

In 2013, the NFL issued a new helmet rule stating that players will no longer be allowed to use alternate helmets due to the league's enhanced concussion awareness. This caused the Cowboys' white 1960s throwback helmets to become non-compliant. The team instead decided to wear their normal blue jerseys at home for Thanksgiving.[15]

Home/road jersey history

In 1964, Tex Schramm started the tradition of the Cowboys wearing their white jersey at home, contrary to an unofficial rule that teams should wear colored jerseys at home. Schramm did this because he wanted fans to see a variety of opponents' colors at home games.[16] Since then, a number of other teams have worn their white uniforms at home, including the Miami Dolphins.

Roger Staubach and Bob Lilly jerseys shown at Pro Football Hall of Fame in Canton, OH.

Throughout the years, the Cowboys' blue jersey has been popularly viewed to be "jinxed" because the team often seemed to lose when they wore them. This curse purportedly became popular after the team lost Super Bowl V, when they were forced to wear their colored jersey because they were the designated home team.[17] However, the roots of the curse likely date back earlier to the end of the 1968 season when the blue-shirted Cowboys were upset badly by the Cleveland Browns in the divisional playoffs. That turned out to be Don Meredith's final game as a Cowboy. Dallas's lone victory in a conference championship or Super Bowl wearing the blue jerseys was in the 1978 NFC Championship game against the Los Angeles Rams.

Since the 1970 NFL-AFL merger, league rules were changed to allow the Super Bowl home team to pick their choice of jersey. Most of the time, Dallas will wear their blue jerseys when they visit Washington, Philadelphia (sometimes), Miami, or one of the handful of other teams that traditionally wear their white jerseys at home during the first half of the season due to the hot climates in their respective cities or other means. Occasionally opposing teams will wear their white jerseys at home to try to invoke the curse,[18] such as when the Philadelphia Eagles hosted the Cowboys in the 1980 NFC Championship Game,[19] as well as their November 4, 2007 meeting. The Washington Redskins, after wearing white exclusively in the '80s and '90s, including the 1982 NFC Championship Game (having gone 3–0 in them during the regular season, during CBS' pregame show, Jimmy "The Greek" Snyder actually invoked the blue jerseys in picking Dallas to win the game[20]), have since in the 2000s occasionally reverted to using their burgundy jerseys for second-half home games, but would still wear white against the Cowboys; in 2005 (on Monday Night Football) and 2012 (on Thanksgiving), the Cowboys wore their blue throwbacks at home against the Redskins, and lost both of those games as well. Various other teams, be it an NFC East rival or teams not from the same division as the Dallas Cowboys, followed suit in the 1980s. A couple other division rivals such as the New York Giants and the Cardinals (formerly in their time as their existence in St. Louis) have purposely worn white at home against the Cowboys in the past. The New York Giants for portions of the 1980s, carried from head coach Ray Perkins to Bill Parcells, wore white at home against the Cowboys but after a period of time stopped. The now Arizona Cardinals, back when they were in St. Louis, were one of the first teams to try doing this trick when the Cowboys visited the Cardinals at Busch Stadium. The Carolina Panthers, who came into existence in 1995, used to attempt the gimmick (regardless of whether the purpose of beating the early season heat was to be had) until 2006. One of the more recent examples of the "curse" happened in 2008 when the 1–4 St. Louis Rams chose to wear their white uniforms at home, forcing the Cowboys to wear road blue uniforms. The Rams would upset the Cowboys 34–14. It was the first time the Rams wore white at home since (moving to St. Louis) their existence in Los Angeles where they also used to do the same on some occasion against Dallas. On October 16, 2011, the Cowboys wore their road blue jerseys against the New England Patriots for the first time since December 27, 2009, against the Redskins; the Patriots defeated the Cowboys 20–16. The Cowboys wore the road blue jerseys in both the 2003 and 2011 visits to New England at Gillette Stadium. The Patriots wore silver (which is a light color and treated as a white jersey) in 2003 and white in the 2011 meeting against Dallas. Bill Belichick, head coach of the New England Patriots, made the decision to wear white against the Cowboys. He was on the New York Giants coaching staff for some of those years in the 1980s when the Giants bought into the curse.[21][22]

Although Dallas has made several tweaks to their blue jerseys over the years, Schramm said he did not believe in the curse.[23] Since the league began allowing teams to use an alternate jersey, the Cowboys' alternates have been primarily blue versions of past jerseys and the Cowboys have generally had success when wearing these blue alternates. With the implementation of the 2013 NFL helmet rule for alternate jerseys, the team decided instead to wear their regular blue jerseys for their Thanksgiving game, something they have not done at home since Schramm started the white-jersey-at-home tradition.[15]

Thanksgiving Day uniforms

With the Cowboys traditionally hosting Thanksgiving Day games, separate uniform practices have been used for these games in recent years. Through the 2000 season, the Cowboys continued the usual practice of wearing white at home. In 2001, the Cowboys wore blue at home for the first time in years, but it was an older design of the blue jersey. Dallas would lose the game, but again wore the older blue jersey at home on Thanksgiving the next year and won. With the 2002 victory, it seems an exception the theory of the blue jersey jinx is invoked on Thanksgiving.

Thus, the Cowboys continued wearing blue at home on Thanksgiving from 2003–2006, however it was always an older-styled blue jersey. In 2007 and 2008, the Cowboys returned to wearing white at home for their Thanksgiving game. Since 2009, the Cowboys returned to wearing blue at home on Thanksgiving only (From 2009–2012, the team again decided to go with an older-styled blue uniform as they had in previous years on Thanksgiving, and since 2013 have worn the newer-styled blue jersey).

Stadiums

Cotton Bowl

Main article: Cotton Bowl (stadium)
The main entrance of the Cotton Bowl

The Cotton Bowl is a stadium which opened in 1932 and became known as "The House That Doak Built" due to the immense crowds that former SMU running back Doak Walker drew to the stadium during his college career in the late 1940s. Originally known as the Fair Park Bowl, it is located in Fair Park, site of the State Fair of Texas. Concerts or other events using a stage allow the playing field to be used for additional spectators. The Cotton Bowl was the longtime home of the annual Cotton Bowl Classic college football bowl game, for which the stadium is named. (Beginning with the January 2010 game, the Cotton Bowl Classic has been played at Cowboys Stadium in Arlington.) The Dallas Cowboys called the Cotton Bowl home for 11 years, from the team's formation in 1960 until 1971, when the Cowboys moved to Texas Stadium. It is the only Cowboys stadium within the Dallas city limits. The Cowboys hosted the Green Bay Packers for the 1966 NFL Championship at the Cotton Bowl.

Texas Stadium

Main article: Texas Stadium
The outside of Texas Stadium

For the majority of the franchise's history the Cowboys played their home games at Texas Stadium. Just outside the city of Dallas, the stadium was located in Irving, Texas. The stadium opened on October 24, 1971, at a cost of $35 million and with a seating capacity of 65,675. The stadium was famous for its hole-in-the-roof dome. The roof's worn paint had become so unsightly in the early 2000s that it was repainted in the summer of 2006 by the City of Irving. It was the first time the famed roof was repainted since Texas Stadium opened. The roof was structurally independent from the stadium it covered. The Cowboys lost their final game at Texas Stadium to the Baltimore Ravens, 33–24, on December 20, 2008. After Cowboys Stadium was opened in 2009, the Cowboys turned over the facility to the City of Irving.

In 2009, it was replaced as home of the Cowboys by Cowboys Stadium, which officially opened on May 27, 2009 in Arlington, Texas.[24] Texas Stadium was demolished by implosion on April 11, 2010.

AT&T Stadium

Main article: AT&T Stadium
AT&T Stadium during a game

AT&T Stadium, previously named Cowboys Stadium, is a domed stadium with a retractable roof in Arlington, Texas. After failed negotiations to build a new stadium on the site of the Cotton Bowl, Jerry Jones along with the city of Arlington, Texas a suburb of Fort Worth, funded the stadium at a cost of $1.3 billion. The stadium is located in Tarrant County, the first time the Cowboys will call a stadium home outside of Dallas County. It was completed on May 29, 2009 and seats 80,000, but is expandable to seat up to 100,000. Cowboys Stadium is the largest domed stadium in the world.[25]

A highlight of AT&T Stadium is its gigantic, center-hung high-definition television screen, the largest in the world. The 160 by 72 feet (49 by 22 m), 11,520-square-foot (1,070 m2) scoreboard surpasses the 8,736 sq ft (812 m2) screen that opened in 2009 at the renovated Kauffman Stadium in Kansas City, Missouri as the world's largest.[26][27][28]

At the debut pre-season game of Cowboys Stadium, a punt by Tennessee Titans kicker, A. J. Trapasso, hit the 2,100 in. screen above the field. The punt deflected and was ruled in-play until Titans coach Jeff Fisher informed the officials that the punt struck the scoreboard. (Many believe Trapasso was trying to hit the suspended scoreboard, based on replays and the angle of the kick.) The scoreboard is, however, within the regulation of the NFL guidelines — hanging approximately five feet above the minimum height. No punts hit the scoreboard during the entire 2009 regular season during an actual game. Also, on August 22, 2009, the day after AJ Trapasso hit the screen, many fans touring the facility noted that half of the field was removed with large cranes re-positioning the screen. According to some fans, a tour guide explained that Jerry Jones invited a few professional soccer players to drop kick soccer balls to try to hit the screen. Once he observed them hitting it consistently he had the screen moved up another 10 feet.

The first regular season home game of the 2009 season was against the New York Giants. A league record-setting 105,121 fans showed up completely to pack Cowboys Stadium for the game before which the traditional "blue star" at the 50-yard line was unveiled for the first time; however, the Cowboys lost in the final seconds, 33–31.[29]

The Cowboys got their first regular season home win on September 28, 2009. They beat the Carolina Panthers 21–7 with 90,588 in attendance. The game was televised on ESPN's Monday Night Football and marked a record 42nd win for the Cowboys on MNF.[30]

On July 25, 2013, the Cowboys announced that AT&T will take over the naming rights for the stadium.[31]

Training camp sites

Dallas Cowboys training camp locations:[32]

  • 1960: Pacific University, Forest Grove, Oregon
  • 1961: St. Olaf College, Northfield, Minnesota
  • 1962: Northern Michigan College, Marquette, Michigan
  • 1963–1989: California Lutheran College, Thousand Oaks, California
  • 1990–1997: St. Edward’s University, Austin, Texas
  • 1998–2002: Midwestern State University, Wichita Falls, Texas
  • 2001: River Ridge Sports Complex, Oxnard, California
  • 2002–2003: The Alamodome, San Antonio, Texas.
  • 2004–2006: River Ridge Sports Complex, Oxnard, California
  • 2007: The Alamodome, San Antonio, Texas
  • 2008: River Ridge Sports Complex, Oxnard, California
  • 2009: The Alamodome, San Antonio, Texas
  • 2010: The Alamodome, San Antonio, Texas and River Ridge Sports Complex, Oxnard, California

Rivalries

The NFC East, composed of the Cowboys, Philadelphia Eagles, Washington Redskins and New York Giants, is one of the least-changed divisions of the original six formed in the wake of the NFL-AFL merger (its only major changes being the relocation of the Cardinals franchise from St Louis to Arizona and its subsequent move to the NFC West in the league's 2002 realignment). Three of the four teams have been division rivals since the Cowboys' entry into the NFL. As such, the Cowboys have some of the longest and fiercest rivalries in the sport.

Washington Redskins

The Redskins and Dallas Cowboys enjoy what has been called by Sports Illustrated the top NFL rivalry of all time and "one of the greatest in sports." Some sources trace the enmity to before the Cowboys were even formed, due to a longstanding disagreement between Redskins owner George Preston Marshall and Cowboys founder Clint Murchison Jr. over the creation of a new football team in the South, due to Preston's TV monopoly in that region. The two teams' storied on-field rivalry goes back to 1960 when the two clubs first played each other, resulting in a 26–14 Washington victory. Since that time, the two teams have met in 100 regular season contests and two NFC Championships. Dallas leads the regular season all-time series 65–43–2, and the Redskins lead the all-time playoff series 2–0. The Cowboys currently have an 13-5 advantage over the Redskins at FedEx Field. Some notable moments in the rivalry include Washington's victory over Dallas in the 1982 NFC Championship and the latter's 1989 win over the Redskins for their only victory that season. The last Cowboys game with Tom Landry as coach was a win over Washington on December 11, 1988. In the 2010s, the Redskins have struggled to consistently compete for the Division title, but still play the Cowboys particularly tough, posting impressive, upset victories against Dallas in both 2013 and 2014, despite being outclassed by the Cowboys in the overall standings.

Philadelphia Eagles

The competition with Philadelphia has been particularly intense since the late 1970s, when the long-moribund Eagles returned to contention. In January 1981, the two teams faced off in the NFC Championship, with Philadelphia winning 20–7. A series of other factors heightened tensions during the 1980s and 1990s, including several provocative actions by Philadelphia fans and Eagles head coach Buddy Ryan. Among these were the 1989 "Bounty Bowls," in which Ryan allegedly placed a bounty on Dallas kicker Luis Zendejas and Veterans Stadium fans pelted the Cowboys with snowballs and other debris. A 1999 game at Philadelphia saw Eagles fans cheering as Michael Irvin lay motionless and possibly paralyzed on the field. In 2008 the rivalry became more intense when in the last game of the year in which both teams could clinch a playoff spot with a victory, the Philadelphia Eagles defeated the Cowboys 44–6. The following season, the Cowboys avenged that defeat by beating the Eagles three times: twice during the regular season to claim the title as NFC East champions and once more in a wild-card playoff game by a combined score of 78–30, including a 24–0 shutout in week 17. That three game sweep was Dallas' first over any opponent and the longest winning streak against the Eagles since 1992–1995 when Dallas won seven straight matches against Philadelphia. During the 2013 season Dallas won the first meeting 17-3 at Lincoln Financial Field in Philadelphia. They would meet again in Week 17 at the Cowboys AT&T Stadium with the winner clinching the 2013 NFC East Title. The Cowboys came into the game at a disadvantage with starting quarterback Tony Romo out with a season ending back injury which put backup Kyle Orton as the starter. It was a tight game with the Eagles up 24-22 with less than 2 minutes to go in regulation. Orton got the ball and started driving down the field when he was intercepted by the Eagles defense which ended the game and the Cowboys season. Dallas leads the regular season all-time series 63-49. In 2014, the Cowboys and Eagles both won against each other on the road, with Philadelphia posting a dominant 33-10 win on Thanksgiving Day in Dallas, and Dallas returning the favor two weeks later by defeating the Eagles 38-27 in Philadelphia. The second game between these rivals clenched a playoff spot for Dallas and led to formerly first place Philadelphia missing out on the post-season.

Pittsburgh Steelers

The two teams met in the first regular season game the Cowboys ever played in 1960 (a 35–28 loss to the Steelers), the first-ever regular season victory for the expansion Cowboys in 1961, and would later meet in three Super Bowls, all of them closely contested events. The Steelers-Cowboys is to date the Super Bowl matchup with the most contests. The Steelers won Super Bowl X and Super Bowl XIII; both games were decided in the final seconds, first on a last-second throw by Roger Staubach, then as a fourth-quarter rally by Dallas fell short on an onside kick. The Cowboys won Super Bowl XXX in January 1996. It is said that the rivalry was fueled in the 1970s due to the stark contrast of the teams: the Cowboys, being more of a "flashy" team with Roger Staubach's aerial attack and the "flex" Doomsday Defense; while the Steelers were more of a "blue-collar" team with a strong running game and the 1970s-esque Steel Curtain defense, a contrast that still exists today.[33] In addition, both teams have national fan bases rivaled by few NFL teams, and both come from areas with a strong following for football at all levels. Dallas leads the all-time series 16–15 including the playoffs.[34]

New York Giants

The first game ever played between the Giants and Cowboys was a 31–31 tie on December 4, 1960. Dallas logged its first win in the series on October 29, 1961 and New York's first was on November 11, 1962. Among the more notable moments in the rivalry was the Giants' defeat of Dallas in the 2007 playoffs en route to their victory in Super Bowl XLII and winning the first regular season game played at Cowboys Stadium in 2009. Dallas currently leads the all-time series 61–43–2.[34]

San Francisco 49ers

The bitter rivalry between the Dallas Cowboys and San Francisco 49ers has been going on since the 1970s.[35][36] The NFL Top 10 ranked this rivalry to be the tenth best in the history NFL. San Francisco has played Dallas in seven postseason games. The Cowboys defeated the 49ers in the 1970 and 1971 NFC Championship games, and again in the 1972 Divisional Playoff Game. The 1981 NFC Championship Game in San Francisco, which saw the 49ers' Joe Montana complete a game-winning pass to Dwight Clark in the final minute (now known as The Catch) is one of the most famous games in NFL history. The rivalry became even more intense during the 1992–1994 seasons. San Francisco and Dallas faced each other in the NFC Championship Game three separate times. Dallas won the first two match-ups, and San Francisco won the third. In each of these pivotal match-ups, the game's victor went on to win the Super Bowl. Both the Cowboys and the 49ers are second all time in Super Bowl victories to the Pittsburgh Steelers with five each. The 49ers-Cowboys rivalry is also part of the larger cultural rivalry between California and Texas. San Francisco 49ers is leading the all-time series with a record of 17–16–1.

Season-by-season records

Notable players

Current roster

Dallas Cowboys roster
Quarterbacks

Running backs

Wide receivers

Tight ends

Offensive linemen

Defensive linemen

Linebackers

Defensive backs

Special teams

Reserve lists


Rookies in italics
Roster updated July 28, 2015
Depth ChartTransactions

90 Active, 8 Inactive

AFC rostersNFC rosters

Pro Football Hall of Famers

Inductee Class Position Seasons
Adderley, HerbHerb Adderley 1981 Cornerback 1970–1972
Aikman, TroyTroy Aikman 2006 Quarterback 1989–2000
Allen, LarryLarry Allen 2013 Guard
Offensive Tackle
1994–2005
Alworth, LanceLance Alworth 1978 Wide Receiver 1971–1972
Ditka, MikeMike Ditka 1988 Tight End 1969–1972
Dorsett, TonyTony Dorsett 1994 Running Back 1977–1987
Gregg, ForrestForrest Gregg 1977 Offensive Tackle 1971
Haley, CharlesCharles Haley 2015 Defensive End 1992-1996
Hayes, BobBob Hayes 2009 Wide Receiver 1965–1974
Irvin, MichaelMichael Irvin 2007 Wide Receiver 1988–1999
Landry, TomTom Landry 1990 Coach 1960–1988
Lilly, BobBob Lilly 1980 Defensive Tackle 1961–1974
Tommy McDonald 1998 Wide Receiver 1964
Parcells, BillBill Parcells 2013 Coach 2003–2006
Renfro, MelMel Renfro 1996 Safety/ Cornerback 1964–1977
Sanders, DeionDeion Sanders 2011 Cornerback
Kick Returner
1995–1999
Schramm, TexTex Schramm 1991 Team administrator 1960–1989
Smith, EmmittEmmitt Smith 2010 Running Back 1990–2002
Smith, JackieJackie Smith 1994 Tight End 1978
Staubach, RogerRoger Staubach 1985 Quarterback 1969–1979
White, RandyRandy White 1994 Defensive Tackle 1975–1988
Wright, RayfieldRayfield Wright 2006 Offensive Tackle 1967–1979

Super Bowl MVPs

Although the Cowboys are tied with the 49ers for the second most Super Bowl victories (Steelers have 6), Dallas actually holds the record, with Pittsburgh, for the most Super Bowl games played (8) and solely holds the record the most Super Bowl MVPs with 7:

  1. Linebacker Chuck Howley – Super Bowl V – Howley was named the MVP for Super Bowl V despite the Cowboys' loss to the Baltimore Colts. He is the only member of a losing team to win the award. In recording two interceptions and a fumble recovery during the game, Howley was the first defensive player to win the honor.
  2. Quarterback Roger Staubach – Super Bowl VI – Staubach became the fifth quarterback overall to be awarded the MVP trophy after Dallas' win over the Miami Dolphins. He completed 12 out of 19 passes for 119 yards (109 m), threw 2 touchdown passes, and rushed 5 times for 18 yards (16 m).He also became the first of four Heisman winners to win Super Bowl MVP.
  3. (Tie) Defensive tackle Randy White and defensive end Harvey Martin – Super Bowl XII – Super Bowl XII marked the first time that two players won MVP honors. White and Martin, who helped the Cowboys defeat the Denver Broncos, became the first defensive linemen to win the award.
  4. See #3
  5. Quarterback Troy Aikman – Super Bowl XXVII – Aikman became the second Cowboys quarterback to earn the MVP honor as he led the Cowboys to victory against the Buffalo Bills. He completed 22 of 30 passes for 273 yards (250 m) and 4 touchdowns, while also rushing for 28 yards (26 m).
  6. Running back Emmitt Smith – Super Bowl XXVIII – Smith's 30 carries for 132 yards (121 m), 4 receptions for 26 yards (24 m), and two touchdowns led Dallas to a victory over the Buffalo Bills. In that same year, Smith became the first player to win the Super Bowl, the NFL rushing title (i.e. lead the league in rushing), the NFL Most Valuable Player Award, and the Super Bowl MVP all in one season.
  7. Cornerback Larry Brown – Super Bowl XXX – Brown became the first cornerback to be named Super Bowl MVP, recording two interceptions for a total of 77 return yards. The Cowboys sealed the victory over the Pittsburgh Steelers by converting both of Brown's interceptions into touchdowns.

Ring of Honor

Unlike many NFL teams, the Cowboys do not retire jersey numbers of past standouts as a matter of policy. Instead, the team has a "Ring of Honor", which is on permanent display encircling the field. Originally at Texas Stadium, the ring is now on display at Cowboys Stadium in Arlington. The first inductee was Bob Lilly in 1975 and by 2005, the ring contained 17 names, all former Dallas players except for one head coach and one general manager/president. Although the team does not officially retire jersey numbers, some are kept "unofficially inactive", so it is uncommon to find any current players wearing the number of one of the "Ring of Honor" inductees. For instance, the jersey numbers of inductees Aikman (8), Staubach (12), Hayes and Smith (22), Irvin (88), and Lilly (74) were not worn during the 2008 season. For the 2010 season, number 88 was issued to rookie Dez Bryant.

The Ring of Honor has been a source of controversy over the years. Tex Schramm was believed to be a "one-man committee" in choosing inductees and many former Cowboys players and fans felt that Schramm deliberately excluded linebacker Lee Roy Jordan because of a bitter contract dispute the two had during Jordan's playing days. When Jerry Jones bought the team he inherited Schramm's Ring of Honor "power" and immediately inducted Jordan.

Jones also has sparked controversy regarding his decisions in handling the "Ring of Honor". For four years he was unsuccessful in convincing Tom Landry to accept induction. Meanwhile, he refused to induct Tex Schramm (even after Schramm's induction to the Pro Football Hall of Fame). In 1993, thanks in part to the efforts of Roger Staubach as an intermediary, Landry accepted induction and had a ceremony on the day of that year's Cowboys-Giants game (Landry had played and coached for the Giants). In 2003, Jones finally chose to induct Tex Schramm. Schramm and Jones held a joint press conference at Texas Stadium announcing the induction. Unfortunately, Schramm did not live to see his ceremonial induction at the Cowboys-Eagles game that fall.

Some of the more recent inductees were Troy Aikman, all-time NFL leading rusher Emmitt Smith, and Michael Irvin, known as "The Triplets". The Cowboys waited until Smith had retired as a player before inducting Aikman and Irvin, so all three could be inducted together, which occurred during halftime at a Monday Night Football home game against the arch-rival Washington Redskins on September 19, 2005.

The Newest Inductees are Defensive end Charles Haley, Offensive Lineman Larry Allen, and Wide Receiver Drew Pearson on 6 November 2011 against the Seattle Seahawks during Halftime.

All-time first-round draft picks

Head coaches and staff

Head coaches

Current staff

Dallas Cowboys staff
Front Office
Head Coaches
Offensive Coaches
 
Defensive Coaches
Special Teams Coaches
Strength and Conditioning

Coaching Staff and Management
More NFL staffs

AFC East
BUF
MIA
NE
NYJ
North
BAL
CIN
CLE
PIT
South
HOU
IND
JAX
TEN
West
DEN
KC
OAK
SD
NFC East
DAL
NYG
PHI
WAS
North
CHI
DET
GB
MIN
South
ATL
CAR
NO
TB
West
ARI
STL
SF
SEA

Radio and television

As of 2010, the Cowboys' flagship radio station is KRLD-FM. Brad Sham is the team's longtime play-by-play voice. Working alongside him is former Cowboy quarterback Babe Laufenberg, who returned in 2007 after a one-year absence to replace former safety Charlie Waters. The Cowboys, who retain rights to all announcers, chose not to renew Laufenberg's contract in 2006 and brought in Waters. However, Laufenberg did work as the analyst on the "Blue Star Network," which televises Cowboys preseason games not shown on national networks. The anchor station is KTVT, the CBS owned and operated station in Dallas. Previous stations which aired Cowboys games included KVIL-FM, KRLD, and KLUV-FM. Kristi Scales is the sideline reporter on the radio broadcasts.

During his tenure as Cowboys coach, Tom Landry co-hosted his own coach's show with late veteran sportscaster Frank Glieber and later with Brad Sham. Landry's show was famous for his analysis of raw game footage and for he and his co-host making their NFL "predictions" at the end of each show. Glieber is one of the original voices of the Cowboys Radio Network, along with Bill Mercer, famous for calling the Ice Bowl of 1967 and both Super Bowl V and VI. Mercer is perhaps best known as the ringside commentator of World Class Championship Wrestling in the 1980s. Upon Mercer's departure, Verne Lundquist joined the network, and became their play-by-play announcer by 1977, serving eight years in that capacity before handing those chores permanently over to Brad Sham, who joined the network in 1977 as the color analyst and occasional fill-in for Lundquist.

Longtime WFAA-TV sports anchor Dale Hansen was the Cowboys color analyst with Brad Sham as the play-by-play announcer from 1985–1996.

Dave Garrett served as the Cowboys' play-by-play announcer from 1995–97, when Brad Sham left the team and joined the Texas Rangers' radio network team as well as broadcast Sunday Night Football on Westwood One.

Seeking to expand its radio broadcasting scope nationally, the Cowboys began a five-year partnership with Compass Media Networks on February 2, 2011. The result was the America's Team Radio Network, a supplement to the franchise's regional one.[37] Beginning with the 2011 season, Kevin Burkhardt and Danny White handled the broadcasts, with Jerry Recco as the studio host.[38]

See also

References

  1. ^ a b "2014 Dallas Cowboys Media Guide" (PDF). National Football League. August 22, 2014. Retrieved July 30, 2015. 
  2. ^ a b "2012 Dallas Cowboys Logo Slick". NFL Properties, LLC. April 6, 2012. Retrieved July 30, 2015. 
  3. ^ Phillips, Rob (July 25, 2006). "Cowboys Breaking Ground With New Stadium". DallasCowboys.com. Retrieved October 23, 2007. [dead link]
  4. ^ "NFL History 1951–1960". NFL.com. Retrieved January 23, 2008. 
  5. ^ "The Dallas Cowboys Tickets : The Team Plays Its Home Games At Cowboys Stadium In Arlington". Articlesnatch.com. Retrieved 2012-09-03. 
  6. ^ "Team History: 1999 Dallas Cowboys". DallasCowboys.com. Retrieved February 17, 2009. [dead link]
  7. ^ "The Business Of Football". Forbes. 
  8. ^ Ozanian, Mike (August 20, 2014). "The NFL's Most Valuable Teams". Forbes. Retrieved February 2, 2015. 
  9. ^ Forbes. "#5 Dallas Cowboys". Retrieved 23 January 2015. 
  10. ^ Pro-Football-Reference.com In multiple seasons, from 1970 to 1979, in the Regular Season, sorted by descending Date.
  11. ^ Jeff Pearlman, Observer Sport Monthly, March 2009
  12. ^ "Dallas Cowboys Coaches". Cowboysplus.com. Retrieved November 28, 2008. 
  13. ^ Ellis, Josh (October 28, 2008). "The Injury List Just Keeps On Growing". DallasCowboys.com. Archived from the original on 31 October 2008. Retrieved January 11, 2010. 
  14. ^ "NFL Network: Cowboys fire Wade Phillips as head coach, promote Jason Garrett". USA Today. November 8, 2010. Retrieved 2010-11-08. 
  15. ^ a b "Cowboys To Wear Blue Jerseys At Home Thursday". Dallas Cowboys. November 26, 2013. Retrieved November 28, 2013. 
  16. ^ Lukas, Paul. "The Island of Misfit Unis". ESPN. Retrieved November 28, 2007. 
  17. ^ Lukas, Paul (October 26, 2007). "ESPN Page 2 – Uni Watch: How 'bout them Cowboys?". ESPN. Retrieved November 28, 2008. 
  18. ^ Williams, Charean (November 22, 2001). "Cowboys going with retro look". Fort Worth Star-Telegram. 
  19. ^ Wallace, William (January 7, 1981). "Eagles Devise Color Scheme For Cowboys". The New York Times. 
  20. ^ Video on YouTube[dead link]
  21. ^ "Blogs: The Blitz» Blog Archive » Patriots coach Bill Belichick talks about the Cowboys curse of the blue jerseys… and "striped shoelaces?"". BostonHerald.com. 2011-10-14. Archived from the original on 7 December 2011. Retrieved 2012-09-03. 
  22. ^ "Visitors will be forced to cope with a case of the blues". The Boston Globe. 
  23. ^ "Cowboys to Wash Out Blue". The New York Times. January 15, 1981. 
  24. ^ Bell, Jarrett (September 18, 2009). "'This transcends football': 'Boys boast as new stadium shines". USA Today. Retrieved April 30, 2010. 
  25. ^ Popik, Barry (2009-08-22). "Jerrydome or Jerry Dome (Dallas Cowboys Stadium in Arlington) – The Big Apple". Barrypopik.com. Retrieved 2013-11-04. 
  26. ^ Murph, Darren (May 18, 2009). "Kansas City Royals to get 'world's largest' HD LED scoreboard". Engadgethd.com. Retrieved May 22, 2009. 
  27. ^ MJD (June 12, 2008). "Jerry Jones aims to make all Cowboys' fans blind by 2010". Sports.yahoo.com. Retrieved November 28, 2008. 
  28. ^ "Cowboys reveal world’s largest HD LED screen to the public ", LEDs Magazine, 2009-08-23. Retrieved on 2009-08-23.
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