For the 20th consecutive year, Cowboys fans are forced to watch conference championship games that do not feature the Dallas Cowboys. Instead, Cowboys fans get to ponder news about Tony Romo having a plate inserted in his collarbone.
This is not the longest drought that teams have faced after forming dynasties in the past. In fact, it will take eight more years before the Cowboys match the drought of the Green Bay Packers.
Here’s a look at some dynasties of the past:
The Dynasty: Including the four years of the AFFC, Cleveland won eight championships in 20 years.
Aftermath: The Browns won their last NFL title in 1964. They continued to be a force for the rest of the 1960s but never made it to a Super Bowl.
Post-dynasty Drought: 17 years. After reaching the NFL Championship Game in 1969, the Browns would not return to a conference title game until 1986.
Green Bay Packers
The Dynasty: Green Bay won five titles between 1961 and 1967, including the first two Super Bowl titles.
Aftermath: The Packers were a mediocre franchise for a long time and reached the playoffs only twice between 1968 and 1993.
Post-dynasty Drought: 28 years. The Packers lost in the divisional round of the playoffs in 1993 and 1994 before reaching the NFC Championship Game in 1995. They lost to the Cowboys that year but won the Super Bowl the following year.
The Dynasty: Four Super Bowl titles in six years.
Aftermath: Pittsburgh stumbled in the early 1980s thanks to injuries and age. The Steelers made the AFC Championship Game in 1984 after recording only a 9-7 record.
Post-dynasty Drought: 10 years. The Steelers made the playoffs three times between 1985 and 1993 but did not return to the AFC Championship Game until 1994. They reached the Super Bowl in 1995, losing to Dallas.
San Francisco 49ers
The Dynasty: Five Super Bowl titles in 14 years.
Aftermath: San Francisco remained competitive for the rest of the 1990s, but the bottom fell out in 1999.
Post-dynasty Drought: 14 years. The 49ers made the NFC Championship Game in 1997 but would not return until 2011. San Francisco reached the Super Bowl in 2012.
The Dynasty: Three Super Bowl titles in 10 years.
Aftermath: Washington has struggled to become a winning team since its last Super Bowl title in 1991.
Post-dynasty Drought: 24 years. The Redskins have made the playoffs only six times since its last title.
The Dynasty: Three Super Bowl titles in four years.
Aftermath: The Cowboys were the first dynasty to suffer from the salary cap. Opponents signed several key players, and Dallas was unable to get back to the top in the latter half of the 1990s.
Post-dynasty Drought: 20 years. The Cowboys have reached the playoffs eight times since their last Super Bowl win but have won only two playoff games.