Can the Dallas Cowboys win the Super Bowl?

After a quarter of a century, is this the year the Cowboys finally win it all again?

The Dallas Cowboys are widely considered “America’s Team”, particularly by their most ardent fans. Of course, fans of opposing teams are a bit more circumspect, even going so far as to hate the Cowboys for their success over the years.

Because of this, the quarterback of the Cowboys tends to be held to a higher standard and also to get more attention – and criticism – than opposing quarterbacks, but that just goes with the territory.

The Cowboys were one of the more successful teams in the early period of the NFL Super Bowl era, helped by their rivalry with the great Pittsburgh Steelers teams of the 1970s that included quarterback Terry Bradshaw, running back Franco Harris and wide receiver Lynn Swann.

Coach Tom Landry of the Cowboys was a legendary figure, and with players including quarterback Roger Staubach and running back Tony Dorsett the Cowboys won two Super Bowls in the 1970s (Super Bowls VI and XII).

They really should have won a third against their hated enemy the Steelers in Super Bowl XXIII but wide receiver Jackie Smith dropped a certain touchdown pass in the end zone and the Cowboys ended up losing 31-35.

Decade of mediocrity

The ‘Boys then entered a decade or so of mediocrity before a young, rich wildcatter named Jerry Jones purchased the Cowboys in 1989 and did the unthinkable by firing Landry and appointing former University of Miami Coach Jerry Johnson in his place.

This didn’t make Jones very popular with the fans, but things soon turned around as the team started winning (winning tends to fix most ills!).

What really got the Cowboys going in the early 1990s was the drafting of future stars such as quarterback Troy Aikman, wide receiver Michael Irvin, running back Emmitt Smith and safety Darren Woodson.

Wins over the Buffalo Bills in Super Bowls XXVII and XXVIII duly followed. After losing to the Steve Young led San Francisco 49’ers in the NFC Championship in 1994, order was restored the next year when they again made the Super Bowl and beat the Pittsburgh Steelers 27-17.

Mediocrity again

Unfortunately, after winning three Super Bowls in four years, things deteriorated quickly for the Cowboys and they again entered a period of mediocrity.

Then after cycling through a number of quarterbacks over the years including former Patriots quarterback Drew Bledsoe, undrafted Antonio Ramiro Romo took over the team in 2006.

The team’s performance improved, with the Cowboys making the playoffs that year, and the Cowboys generally performing well during Romo’s tenure.

However, playoff success proved rare for Romo and the Cowboys, and after leading the team for the better part of a decade, injury forced Romo to concede the starting quarterback position to Dak Prescott during the 2016 season.

Super Bowl bound?

With Prescott now in his sixth season as the Cowboys quarterback, Dallas sits in first place in the NFC East with a record of 7-4, two games ahead of the Redskins Washington.

Two of their losses have been to last year’s Super Bowl teams, the Buccaneers and Kansas City, suggesting that the Cowboys are one of the better teams in the NFL this year.

However, with two games against Washington, and away games against both the Giants and the Eagles on their remaining schedule, the Cowboys wont have an easy time of it during their last five games.

Even so, if the Cowboys are good enough, they should win the NFC East, then will likely have to go through the Packers and/or the Buccaneers to make the Super Bowl.

Who knows? Maybe this is the year that long suffering Cowboys fans finally see their team win another championship.

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