Flashback, Cowboys vs Eagles – 1993

The Cowboys started the 1993 season with a 0-2 record as Emmitt Smith stayed away due to a contract holdout. After the second loss Jerry Jones realized the Cowboys needed Emmitt Smith to win and he signed him to a new contract. After signing his contract the Cowboys won their next four games as they entered a Halloween match-up with the Eagles. Against the Eagles Emmitt Smith took control and continued to add to his greatness.

On this Halloween afternoon in Philadelphia the rain came down in buckets at times and both teams realized early that the passing game would suffer. Troy Aikman had little to no success as he passed for only 96 yards in the game. The Eagles didn’t fare much better as quarterback Ken O’Brien managed only 107 yards passing. Both teams were able to get their running games going in the absence of any passing game.

The Cowboys took a first quarter lead when kicker Eddie Murray connected on a 35 yard field goal. They increased their lead to 10-0 in the second quarter when Kevin Williams took a reverse and scored from 11 yards out.

The Cowboys seemed to be in control, but with less than five minutes to go before halftime the Eagles put together an 80 yard drive. With 1:25 left Ken O’Brien found Herschel Walker for a three yard touchdown pass and the Eagles pulled closer, 10-7.

With the rain still falling and both offenses not being able to get much going. The Cowboys and Eagles exchanged field goals as the fourth quarter was approaching the midway point. The Cowboys were leading 13-10 when their drive stalled at the Eagles 23 yard line. With the rain coming down harder than at any point during the game, Eddie Murray attempted his third field goal of the game. His kick sailed through the rain, bounced off the crossbar and through to give the Cowboys a 16-10 lead.

“I didn’t know what the distance was,  said Murray. I just hit it like it was 55 yards away,” he said. “Now we know what my range is into a driving wind and rain.”

On the Eagles next possession Charles Haley put an end to the Eagles mounting a late drive against the Cowboys. Haley stripped the ball from Ken O’Brien on third down. The Eagles recovered the fumble, but they had to punt.

On the Cowboys second play after the Eagles punt, they put an end to the game with one run. Emmitt Smith broke through a hole on the left side of his offensive line and found himself in the Eagles secondary. Smith outran cornerback Eric Allen and scored from 62 yards to seal the game 23-10.

“Emmitt’s last run really broke our back,” said Eagles coach Rich Kotite

“It was not a day to throw the ball, it was a day to sit back and let Emmitt do the job,” wide receiver Alvin Harper said. “Thank God Emmitt did his job.”

“I’m happy, I’m tired and I’m excited all at the same time,” Smith said afterward

“The good thing about this team is that we were confident once we got everyone in that we’d be all right,” said Aikman. “We didn’t panic when we were 0-2.”

Emmitt Smith not only scored the game winning touchdown he showed why he is so important to the Cowboys success. Smith had a career day as he carried the ball 30 times for 237 yards. The Cowboys 0-2 start in 1993 was distant memory as they improved to 5-2 with Emmitt Smith and also shared first place in the NFC East with the Giants.

The box score can be seen here.


Jason Witten Deserves Better

I’ve always been a rah! rah! positive type of fan, well that is until this season came along. It’s one thing when you give 100% and fail, but when you aren’t even putting forth your best effort or doing everything humanly possibly to secure a win it gets really hard to be a confident fan. Yes, I know the Cowboys have been plagued with injuries galore and young players have been asked to step up, but that’s just another excuse.

However, I’d like to talk about someone who never gives excuses and ALWAYS gives his everything on the field. Taken in the 3rd round of the 2003 NFL draft, its an understatement to say Jason Witten was a steal for the Dallas Cowboys. Six consecutive Pro Bowl selections hardly describe the wonderfulness that is #82. During week 15 of this season, Witten became the fastest tight end to 600 receptions (in 125 games). Witten also holds a franchise record for most catches in a game by a tight end with 15.

For the 2010 season Jason Witten has a career high 8 touchdowns and is less than 50 yards short of another 1000 yard season with one game left to play. He just keeps getting better, year after year. He doesn’t complain about his teammates, his coaches or the losing record of the 2010 Dallas Cowboys. When asked about the Christmas Day loss to the Cardinals, Jason replied:

“I feel playing the way we are, we’re building on something. To lose that way, it’s hard.”

Since Jason is such a class act and would never say it, I will say it for him – JASON WITTEN DESERVES BETTER!

Jason Witten is a Super Bowl caliber player and deserves at the very least one ring on his finger. He deserves the chance to fight through the playoffs and show the world what he’s got. Can you imagine Jason Witten on the super team of the nineties?

By the time Witten is done with his football career he will be remembered as a warrior and one of the best, if not the best tight end to ever play the game. Yeah, he’s that good. But what saddens me is, much like many of the forgotten Cowboys of the 1980’s, without a Super Bowl trophy to show for it he may only be that shining star in the eyes of the fans who will always remember the helmetless warrior who never went down without a fight.

Fans say it all the time, if we only had a team full of Jason Wittens – can you imagine, we would have a dynasty for years! Players like Jason Witten don’t come along very often. He may play his entire career and never see a Super Bowl, but if that chance comes along and his dream comes true then we will really know that God is a Cowboys fan.

Ain’t That A Kick In The Pants

I’ve spent a lot of this season airing my utter frustrations with Marion Barber and Roy Williams, both of whom I see as finished as far as their effectiveness and value to the team goes.

But there is another…

Can we all agree that our big experiment with David Buehler as the Cowboys’ place kicker has been nothing short of an epic and massive failure?

The Cowboys’ offseason to-do list is long and chock full of many needs, but no less important among those needs is finding a reliable place kicker for next season and waving goodbye to David Buehler.

Buehler has been frustrating to watch this season.

Some may say he had an impressive game against the Cardinals on Saturday night by nailing two long field goals of 42 and 53 yards while we were trying to comeback from being down 14 points early in the game.

But I’m sorry, that missed extra point was the last straw for me.

Football is a game of probabilities. And it is incumbent upon any team to improve those probabilities in every aspect of their game as they look to build a championship caliber team.

Whenever a critical kick is the difference between winning and losing, you can’t hand your game over to one as unpredictable and unreliable as our own David Buehler.

Easily, Buehler’s failures this season contributed to at least four losses that could have instead been thrilling victories for the Cowboys.

Imagine how much different this final regular season game against the Philadelphia Eagles would have been if the Cowboys were 9-6 and one win away from the Wild Card, instead of 5-10?

Oh, and don’t think for one moment that Cowboys owner Jerry Jones hasn’t thought about that, especially when he saw Buehler miss that extra point.

“I don’t even want to talk about it,” he said. “I don’t even fathom missing an extra point. I don’t even fathom it. I just can’t even think about an extra point. That’s a freak thing when we miss an extra point.”

The Cowboys put their fate in the hands of David Buehler, needing only an extra point to take a three-point lead, and even with a simple task like that Buehler could not deliver.

After the game, Buehler admitted that he has hit rock-bottom. Sounds like Buehler nailed it.

What a difference a year makes!

One year ago on December 19, 2009 the Cowboys record stood at 9-5 after going to New Orleans and beating the undefeated Saints 24-17. DeMarcus Ware, who a week earlier was taken off the field on a stretcher with a neck injury, played in the game. He recorded two sacks and forced fumbles on both sacks. The last fumble coming with just six seconds left in the game.

The victory over the Saints seemed to give the Cowboys new life. They traveled to Washington the next week and beat the Redskins 17-0. Then they finished the season at home beating the Eagles 24-0. The Cowboys were NFC East Champions and were getting ready for a Wildcard rematch with the same Eagles team they had just beaten.

The rematch with the Eagles was no contest as the Cowboys took a 27-7 halftime lead. They finished off the Eagles 34-14 and earned a trip to Minnesota to take on the Vikings. 

Everything came crashing down the following week as the Cowboys lost to the Vikings 34-3. The Vikings were the better team that day and could do nothing wrong. Even though the Cowboys had lost there was a feeling that good things awaited the Cowboys going into the 2010 season. It was going to be a season filled with promise and also a chance to play the Super Bowl in their own stadium.

Here are the Cowboys one year later and their record is 5-9. In what could be the most disappointing season in recent memory the Cowboys will soon be clearing out their lockers and heading home while the playoffs are going on. The season as we all know started off at 0-2 and from there the Cowboys could not recover as the losses continued to pile up. Their record stood at 1-7 when Coach Wade Phillips was fired at the beginning of November and the team was handed over to Jason Garrett.

There never seemed to be an answer about why the Cowboys 2010 season went terribly wrong. The blame seemed to cover everything from coaching, to injuries, to not being prepared, to over confidence and age. The players never seemed to know and of course as a fan I can voice my opinions, but I have no idea either.

What I do know is that there are many questions as the Cowboys head off into this off-season. Does Jason Garrett become the Cowboys full time head coach? Who will be the defensive coordinator? What kinds of changes will happen with the offensive line? Will Marion Barber be back with the team? What changes will be made with the Cowboys secondary?

This off-season should be very interesting to see which direction Jerry Jones decides to go in with his team. In the coming months we will learn about the Cowboys coaching staff, Tony Romo’s shoulder injury, Dez Byrant’s ankle injury, the release of certain players, free agency and of course the draft where the Cowboys will have a high draft pick.

Buckle up Cowboys fans and let’s see where this ride takes us. Should be an interesting off-season.

Flashback, Cowboys vs Cardinals – 1995

With the Cowboys playing on Christmas night this season, I thought I would flashback 15 years ago when the Cowboys also played on Christmas night. It was the final game of the 1995 season and the Cowboys were traveling to Arizona. They were looking to lock up home field advantage in the playoffs as well as trying to raise their game to the level they knew they should be at. In the weeks leading up to the Cardinals game the Cowboys had lost back to back games to the Redskins and the Eagles, which was followed by a narrow 21-20 victory over the Giants.

The Cowboys came out in the first quarter and quickly went up 17-0 on the Cardinals. The first score came when Troy Aikman connected with Kevin Williams on a 25 yard touchdown pass. Williams had done an average job in 1995 as he became the starting wide receiver opposite Michael Irvin due to the departure of Alvin Harper to Tampa Bay.

Cardinals quarterback Dave Krieg was then intercepted by Cowboys safety Brock Marion who returned it 32 yards for the score. The Cowboys went ahead 14-0 early in the first quarter. Cowboy’s kicker Chris Boniol added a 39 yard field goal as the first quarter ended giving the Cowboys a 17-0 lead.

Then Kevin Williams got back into the Cowboys offense in the second quarter. Aikman found Williams open for a 48 yard touchdown pass that increased the Cowboys lead to 24-0. The Cowboys were looking like the team they knew they were capable of being. They were dominating the Cardinals, but then like in many other games in 1995 the Cowboys started to make mistakes and looked average.

Derek Kennard, who was playing center for the Cowboys,had some trouble with snapping the ball to Aikman late in the second quarter as they missed on two exchanges. One of those missed exchanges would cost the Cowboys the chance at more points as they fumbled the ball to the Cardinals. The Cardinals turned that into a field goal as the first half ended. The Cowboys went into the locker room with a 24-3 lead.

Things continued to get bad for the Cowboys as the third quarter started. Troy Aikman tried to connect with Michael Irvin, but Cardinals cornerback Aeneas Williams had other ideas. Williams jumped in front of Irvin for the interception and raced 52 yards for the score, which got the Cardinals to within 24-10 of the Cowboys.

On the ensuing kickoff Kevin Williams fumbled and the Cardinals recovered. The fumble resulted in another Cardinals field goal and a 24-13 Cowboys lead.

The Cowboys did manage to increase their lead to 27-13 before the third quarter ended with Chris Boniol’s second field goal of the game.

The fourth quarter was record setting for Emmitt Smith. With his fourth NFL rushing title in the last five seasons already wrapped up Smith was looking for another record. John Riggins from the Redskins had held the regular season record of 24 rushing touchdowns since the 1983 season. Smith had entered the game against the Cardinals tied with Riggins.

The Cardinals had controlled Emmitt Smith for most of the game. When the Cowboys reached the Cardinals three yard line late in the fourth quarter they knew they had to give the ball to Smith. Smith scored and finished the season with a record 25 rushing touchdowns. It also put the game out of reach as the Cowboys went ahead 34-13.

Chris Boniol added his third field goal of the game and the Cowboys won 37-13. They also earned home field advantage in the playoffs as they finished the season with a 12-4 record.

Troy Aikman led the Cowboys offense with 350 yards passing and two touchdowns. Emmitt Smith only managed 68 yards rushing, but with a fourth NFL rushing title and record setting 25th rushing touchdown, it made the 68 yards a little easier to deal with. Kevin Williams had a record game for himself with 9 receptions for 203 yards to go along with his two touchdowns.

The Cowboys defense held the Cardinals offense to 285 yards and also recorded three sacks and collected three turnovers.

“We made a statement to the NFL and to ourselves,” Cowboys safety Darren Woodson said. “We needed to play a good game.”

“I’ve always thought you wait until the end of the season and then add it up to see where you are,” Dallas coach Barry Switzer said. “We’re 12-4, and we’re going to be home for the whole thing. I don’t think many people thought we would be here a week ago.”

“We had a job to do, and we just went out and did it,” offensive lineman Nate Newton said.

A month after beating the Cardinals the Cowboys would return to Sun Devil Stadium in Arizona where they would beat the Steelers 27-17 in Super Bowl XXX. The Super Bowl victory would be the Cowboys third in four years and earn them the title of Team of the 90’s.

The box score can be seen here.


No Late Season Comeback For Tony Romo

Yesterday, Jerry Jones made it official; Tony Romo will not return to the lineup this season.

The news is a little bittersweet as many of us wanted to see the season end on a high note even if it meant getting out on the field for a quarter or two.

Pro Bowl quarterback Tony Romo who suffered a broken collarbone in Week 7, will not get a chance to take a snap for the Jason Garrett led Cowboys, and we still don’t know if he ever will.

The reason to keep Romo on the sidelines is based mostly on continued pain and tenderness in the area of the injury. The decision to keep Romo out is a good one as it would be foolish to send him out there at less than 100% when there is nothing to be gained by it.

It’s not like the team has suffered much by Romo’s absence as they have performed well under backup quarterback Jon Kitna and have won four of their last six games. Kitna also has four 300-yard games during that stretch.

Ironically, Romo still goes out on top in a way as he currently ranks third in the NFC with a 94.9 passer rating, second only to Michael Vick and Aaron Rodgers.

My only regret is that now we will have to wait an entire offseason before we se if there are any adverse effects to Romo’s performance from the injury. I would imagine Romo would have loved to go out knowing that he finished the season on the field and that any concerns were now behind him.

Get well soon Tony, and we’ll see you in training camp.

Cowboys Fans Are Gaining Confidence

If you tried out for the football team in high school, you’re probably painfully aware of how charmed Jason Garrett’s life is. His staggering talent was apparent even in high school when he dominated three different sports, earning honors and letters along the way.

Since his teenage years he’s broken records, won two superbowls, retired as a player and moved his way up the ranks to become the head coach of the Dallas Cowboys. He simply never lost momentum.

So how has this unreckonable force worked out for the Cowboys so far?

When you compare Garrett with former coach Wade Phillips, the first noticeable difference is the elasticity of the team. Because there is none. The offense is tighter than we’ve seen in a while and every player out on the field is on the same page. With Garrett’s shiny new leadership, however temporary it may be, the Cowboys could be a different team by the 2011 preseason. I’m not saying that Garrett conducts them like a symphony or runs a well-oiled machine yet but he does run a tight ship.

Any time there’s a new sheriff in town, one guy has to test his mettle and see how much slack he can get. Marion Barber was that guy, dissing his new coach’s mandate that all players ‘suit up’ in slacks and collared shirts on game days. Even though his game play was  unsurprisingly limited for the dress code violation, Barber’s new calf injury has ensured his rightful place as bench warmer. Even though the playoffs aren’t in the picture this season, the injuries sustained by the Cowboys up to this point show how much fight we put in to each game, yard after yard. Wide-receiver Dez Bryant is now MIA with a fractured ankle and Tony Romo’s collarbone is taking its sweet time to heal.

However, if traffic resurgence on sports gambling sites can tell us anything, it’s that Cowboys fans are regaining confidence. Sites like GameBookers.com are coming to life again on game day as if the fans are slowly, unashamedly peeking out of their foxholes. Season ticket-holders’ seats are filling again. There, there. It’s not an easy step to take after the 45-7 shellacking delivered by Green Bay in November. The newfound freshness and pep that the Cowboys have shown so late in the season is part of an attitude change that fans have adopted in solidarity.

Is it ironic that Wade Phillips was replaced after a loss to the Packers… by Garrett, whose career pinnacle was 311 glorious yards and two glorious Thanksgiving Day touchdowns as a back-up… against Green Bay? It’s the NFL’s own brand of poetic justice. Now, if only we could get Jerry Jones to take a hard look at his assistant coaches…

Jason Witten Is Efficient As Always

It’s been a season filled with ups and downs, but mostly downs. After the devastating loss of quarterback Tony Romo, I like many others thought we’d be in for some ugly football the rest of the way.

When Jason Garrett took over as head coach, I was optimistic that we might see some inspired play by our team, even though any chance to earn a playoff spot was already shattered.

What we’ve learned under Garrett is that this team has a lot of fight in them and a lot of character as well. Each passing week, Garrett continues to gain the respect of his players and fans as well, and calls for making him the permanent head coach are getting louder as the season comes to an end.

During the Cowboys recent inspired play, one player who continues to carry the load and perform at a high level is tight end Jason Witten.

I recently read an article on ESPN that discussed effectiveness inside the red zone, a long-time problem for the Cowboys going back about three seasons now. In case you hadn’t noticed, the Cowboys have made some huge strides in that area this season, and you can credit Witten for the bulk of it.

Through 13 games this year the Cowboys are seventh in the NFL in red-zone efficiency with 23 touchdowns in 38 trips.

Witten is having a remarkable season despite how bad the team has floundered. After putting up six touchdown catches in the last two seasons, Witten now has six touchdown catches this year, and is only one score away from matching his career high set in 2007.

He is currently tied for third in the NFL among tight ends in TD catches, trailing only Antonio Gates (10) and Marcedes Lewis (9).

For some strange reason, Witten had become an afterthought in the red zone last season and for the first part of this season, but clearly the Cowboys have seen the error of their ways and have implemented Witten as a primary weapon again, especially in these situations. I give Jon Kitna much of the credit for his resurgence in the second half as well.

In a strange twist regarding the Cowboys red zone efficiency, the Cowboys have only five rushing touchdowns from inside the red zone. Only Miami with four has fewer.

By the way, does anybody else want to scream whenever Felix Jones is asked to stuff it up the middle on first, second or third and goal?

Flashback, Cowboys vs Redskins – 1989

When Jerry Jones hired Jimmy Johnson to coach the Cowboys in 1989 Johnson had a plan. He was going to build the Cowboys his way and bring back the glory days. Although the 1-15 record of 1989 was not a season to remember, there was one game that stood out as a stepping stone for future success for the Cowboys.

The Cowboys went into RFK Stadium to play the hated Redskins with a 0-8 record. Jimmy Johnson had young talent like Troy Aikman, Daryl Johnston, Michael Irvin, Mark Stepnoski, Ken Norton Jr. and Tony Tolbert. Johnson also had some veteran holdovers from the Tom Landry days like Tom Rafferty, Bill Bates, Jim Jeffcoat and Ed (Too Tall) Jones.

On this night it would be an unlikely player taking the stage for the Cowboys. A dominating defense and a great running game brought the Redskins to their knees and gave the Cowboys their first and only win of 1989.

The Cowboys defense intercepted two passes from Redskins quarterback Doug Williams in the first half. Williams was starting his first game since back surgery in August. One came from cornerback Vince Albritton and the other came from safety Bill Bates with 24 seconds left in the second quarter. Bates made his interception at the Cowboys 48 yard line and returned it 18 yards to the Redskins 34 yard line. Steve Walsh playing for the injured Troy Aikman drove the Cowboys to the three yard line. After a Walsh incompletion, Jimmy Johnson settled for a Roger Ruzek 20 yard field goal to take a 3-0 halftime lead.

“I felt like we could win the game then,” Johnson said. “The way our defense was playing, I didn’t think Washington would score a lot of points.”

In the third quarter the Redskins tied the game at 3-3 with some help from instant replay. With the Redskins driving into Cowboys territory, officials ruled that Ark Monk fumbled at the Cowboys 35 yard line after Ron Francis stripped him giving the ball to the Cowboys. But after the officials went to instant replay the call was reversed because Monks knee was down before he was stripped. The Redskins got to the Cowboys 18 yard when kicker Chip Lohmiller connected on a 35 yard field goal to tie the game.

Late in the third quarter it was an unlikely hero who took control of the running game. Paul Palmer, who was part of the Herschel Walker trade in 1989, broke free for a 47 yard run. Blocks from Tom Raffery, Crawford Ker and Mark Tuinei allowed Palmer’s long run. Then with 2:17 left in the third quarter Palmer finished the drive with a two yard touchdown run. The Cowboys took the lead 10-3.

“Once I got through the line, I got some great blocks,” Palmer said. “I just didn’t have enough gas to take it to the house.”

With the Cowboys defense continuing to dominate the Redskins into the fourth quarter, Palmer’s touchdown would be all that they needed to come away with the victory. Palmer finished the game with 110 yards rushing on 18 carries.

The Cowboys added another Roger Ruzek field goal from 43 yards and the first victory of the season was theirs, 13-3. The win was an important step for Jimmy Johnson and the Cowboys.

“The rocky days are not over for the Cowboys,” said Johnson, whose NFL coaching record stands at 1-8. “But I’m happy to get the win. We’re going to have a lot of wins over the next so-many years in Dallas, and it’s good to get it started.”

“We caught the Redskins at a tough time,” said safety Bill Bates, whose interception led to the Cowboys’ first points. “They had a couple of players injured, and they were trying to get Doug Williams into the offense, so I know it was a good time to play them. But anytime you beat them is a good time.”

“I’m really happy for our club,” said Johnson, who immediately rewarded the players with a day off Monday. “They’ve been working very hard, and it’s been a very frustrating year.”

Steve Walsh only completed 10 of 30 passes for 142 yards, but controlled the game and never made any mistakes. The leading receiver for the Cowboys was Kelvin Martin who caught five passes for 93 yards.

The box score can be seen here.


Cowboys Secondary Has Become A Primary Concern

Newman and Jenkins continue to slide and in the process our secondary keeps getting worse and worse. You can usually tell these things just by watching the games and seeing them get burned for big plays by the opposition. But the numbers really do bear it out as well.

The Dallas Morning News recently wrote that based on data alone, the coverage provided by Jenkins and Newman has been far from impervious. They are among a select group of eight defenders who have yielded the most receptions in the NFL this season.

When you consider the high expectations we had for Jenkins after his Pro Bowl season in 2009, this is completely deflating and makes one wonder about his hold on a starting job next season. At times, Jenkins has been brutal and his bad play has led to many a comeback by the opposition while the Cowboys were initially ahead in the game.

Newman, just continues to regress and oftentimes is seen coming off the field with some sort of an injury, rather than on the field making a big play.

Here are some more numbers that reveal the sobering reality of the situation.

Quarterbacks have completed 49 of 75 pass attempts against Jenkins, attaining a 105.7 passer rating in the process. Newman hasn’t been much better. He has been picked on 73 times, allowing 47 receptions as quarterbacks have achieved a 94.1 passer rating.

With numbers like that, is it any surprise why teams feel so comfortable airing it out against the Cowboys and completing passes virtually at will?

Among many other needs this offseason, revamping the secondary will certainly be one of our primary objectives. It doesn’t matter how good our offense is, if our defense keeps letting the opposition light up the scoreboard.

Trip Of A Lifetime!!!

I apologize for the late blog, But I am sure all of you can understand things happen.

I had posted earlier about this thanksgiving day and that I won a trip from a radio station and that I would never forget it. Never in my wildest dreams did I ever think I would have the trip OF A LIFETIME!!!! I am still on cloud 9 and will not have a voice for about a week. As far as the game goes, had we not spotted the Saints 17 points in the first quarter we MIGHT have pulled that win off. As far as my thanksgiving day at the game, allow me to fill you in on a day that I will be giving thanks for, for the rest of my life.

Not only did I get to fly to Dallas, I was put in a resort for the duration of my time there. Something I have never experienced before and it was amazing as well. Thanksgiving morning I had my alarm set to wake up at 8 but was out of bed by 630. Time could not go by fast enough for the bus ride to the stadium. Once we got there, we made it just inside the doors and waited for our contact person. Well she shows up and gives us these orange wrist bands and says, you will need these when you meet Keith Urban and when you GO ONTO THE FIELD AT HALF TIME!!!!!! My jaw just dropped. As we walked down the hallway towards the elevator, I was amazed at the stadium. How huge it was, the way it was built, just everything about it. As the elevator doors open, I look out and 200 feet in front of me is the field. I realize I am on field level, in the miller light suite behind the opposing teams bench.

I was in awe of the size of the stadium. We soon went back and did our meet and greet with Keith Urban, which was the highlight of my wife’s day. One thing that was shocking to me was the Saints fans that were at the game. It had to be at least 60 40. Almost as many Saints fans as Dallas fans. 5 minutes before half time we get prepared prepared. As the clock ticks down towards the half my heart beats faster and faster. The teams leave the field and here I go.

As I am walking toward the field I stop and take a picture with my phone of my first step onto the field. I think my heart even skipped a beat. Keith is performing his halftime show and I am standing just to the front right of him. All the other people on the field are singing and dancing to his music, I am just standing there in shock. I cannot believe I am standing on the 40 yard line. As he finishes his song and they take the stage off of the field. Everyone has to walk across to the other side to leave the field.


I took off and said, He’s at the 40 the 30 the 20 HE COULD GO ALL THE WAY, crossing into the end zone TOUCHDOWN!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!! I ran across the end zone went to the the helmet in the end zone and bent down and kissed the star in the middle of that helmet.

What a day this has become for me. More than I could have ever dreamed of. The game ended and unfortunately the Cowboys came out on the losing end. But for me it was the best losing Cowboys day ever. We walked to the elevator and waited for it to come down. When the doors opened, Once again my mouth dropped as I said OMG that’s Troy Aikman. I stretched out my hand and he shook it as he walked by. A simple how you doing is all the words that were exchanged between us. But that was more than enough. As we came up the elevator we turned right and I realized that I had taken a turn down a hallway that I had never seen before. Could this day get any better?? I just turned and walked down the hall (wall) of fame. Pictures painted on the wall of past cowboys and legends that made the cowboys who they are today.

I left the stadium and got onto the bus with a smile on my face and a memory that will never go away!!!!

I hope I have not bored you all with my story but I had to share my experience. Hope you enjoy the pics!!!

Flashback, Cowboys vs Eagles – 1981

The Cowboys entered this Week 15 match-up against the Eagles looking to capture their 12th NFC East title in the last 16 years. The Eagles had taken the division title from the Cowboys one year earlier and now the Cowboys wanted it back.

Danny White drove the Cowboys offense into Eagles territory on their first two possessions to setup Rafael Septien field goals, but Septien missed both attempts from 48 and 43 yards.

The Eagles took a first quarter lead when kicker Tony Franklin connected on a 50 yard field goal to go up 3-0. The Eagles added to their lead in the second quarter after receiver Ron Smith beat Cowboys cornerback Steve Wilson on a 42 yard pass from quarterback Ron Jaworski. The long pass setup the Eagles deep in Cowboys territory. From there Booker Russell scored from the one yard line to give the Eagles a 10-0 lead.

Things got worse after the Eagles touchdown when Tony Dorsett coughed up the first of his three fumbles in the game. The Eagles were in great shape at the Cowboys 41 yard line and looking to add to their lead. They got to the Cowboys 29 yard line when Jaworski attempted a pass to receiver Harold Carmichael. But Ron Smith got his hand in the way of the pass and it deflected into the hands of Cowboys cornerback Dennis Thurman, who would total three interceptions in the game.

Danny White once again led the Cowboys into Eagles territory. The Cowboys faced a 4th and 1 from the Eagles 44 yard line with 1:37 left in the first half. Coach Tom Landry decided to punt, which led to the turning point in the game. Danny White lofted a high punt to Eagles returner John Sciarra. With five Cowboys surrounding Sciarra he fumbled the punt. Cowboys Anthony Dickerson recovered the fumble and the Cowboys had great field possession at the Eagles 20 yard line.

The Cowboys got to the eight yard line and with 38 seconds left in the first half when Danny White found Tony Hill for the score. The Cowboys were finally on the scoreboard and went into the half down 10-7.

The Cowboys got the second half kickoff and drove 80 yards to take their first lead of the game. Danny White threw his second touchdown pass of the game when he found Butch Johnson on a 36 yard pass to put the Cowboys ahead, 14-10.

The Eagles offense could only manage 59 yards in the second half. The Cowboys defense collected five turnovers with four of them coming on Ron Jaworski interceptions. His last interception came on the one drive that the Eagles got into Cowboys territory. At the 14 yard line rookie cornerback Everson Walls collected his eleventh interception of the season.

After the Walls interception and with the Cowboys facing a 3rd and 9 from their own 15 yard line, Danny White connected with Butch Johnson for 47 yards. The Cowboys drove to the Eagles 12 yard line and then put an end to the game and to any doubt who the division winner would be. Ron Springs scored from the 12 yard line and the Cowboys won the game 21-10 and won the NFC East.

In the game the Cowboys offense gained 412 yards with Danny White throwing for 264 yards and two touchdowns. Even with Tony Dorsett fumbling three times in the game he still rushed for 101 yards.

The Cowboys went into the final game of the 1981 season with a 12-3 record. They could not collect their 13th win because they lost to the NY Giants at Giants Stadium 13-10 in OT. They finished the season 12-4 and lost out on home field advantage in the playoffs to the San Francisco 49ers.

The box score can be seen here.