Tuesday Trivia: 7-5 Starts
Since the NFL expanded to a 16-game schedule in 1978, the Cowboys have started 7-5 just five times.
In three of those seasons, the Cowboys failed to make the playoffs. Which ones?
In only one of those seasons did the Cowboys eventually win the NFC East. Which one?
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Some are treating the Cowboys’ December woes as a Tony Romo issue exclusively. The truth is, though, that the Cowboys have had trouble towards the end of seasons for 15 years now.
Recall the 1997 season. Dallas wasn’t setting the world on fire, but heading into the week before Thanksgiving, the Cowboys were 6-5. Five games and five losses later, Dallas was 6-10 and looking for a new head coach.
In 1998, an 8-3 start ended at 10-6. A year later, the Cowboys went 1-3 in December and struggled to an 8-8 finish.
Goodbye, Chan Gailey.
The Dave Campo years were completely forgettable. So were the ends of seasons during the Bill Parcells era.
The 8-3 start in 2003 ended up being a 10-6 season. A record of 8-5 in 2005 led to a 9-7 finish.
Then came Romo’s first year as a starter in 2006. Dallas had an 8-4 mark after beating the Giants on the road. But Dallas lost three of its next four games to finish at 9-7 once again.
And, of course, Romo and the Cowboys haven’t figured out a way to win in the final quarter of the season since then (save for a nice three-game stretch to conclude the 2009 campaign).