By now it is possible you have already seen numerous breakdowns of the Dallas Cowboys 2013 schedule, including your own. I think it is natural that we all stop as soon as the schedule comes out and try to analyze what we think about it. It is my hope this breakdown will be a little different than any you’ve encountered so far. First if you judge the schedule based upon last year’s results we’ve learned that the Cowboys have the 8th easiest schedule in the NFL this year. Of course we all know last year has no bearing upon this year, nor do any previous years, but it is just one way for us to look at this and analyze it. So let’s see what else we can deduce from this schedule.
Well, the first thing I notice is that there are 4 games each month of the season, and that each month has two home games and two away games. This would lead me to believe we have a chance at a very balanced schedule in 2013. Where a schedule can become unbalanced quickly is with back to back road games. The Cowboys only once this year have back to back home games in weeks 5 and 6. But twice they have back to back road games. The first occurrence is the final two weekends of October in weeks 7 and 8, then it happens again in November in week 10 and week 12. The obvious difference there is that week 11 we have our bye week.
I personally am very glad the bye week happens later in the season for the Cowboys. It seems like we get stuck with week 4 or 5 an awful lot. Another thing you immediately notice is that the Cowboys open the season at home and close the season at home too. It is kind of rare lately that they do either, much less both. 5 years in a row the Cowboys have opened the season on the road and 8 times in the last 10 years. In fact this is Jerry Jones’ 25th season as Cowboys owner, and this is the only 8th time in those 25 seasons that the Cowboys have opened the season at home.
As far as season finales at home, there haven’t been many of those either. In the last 10 years we have closed the season on the road 7 times and each of the last 3 seasons have closed on the road. So that also means that the last 3 seasons we have opened and closed on the road. You have to go all the way back to the 2001 season to find one where we opened and closed at home. It has indeed been a long time since Cowboys fans have seen this happen. That is 11 seasons since it last happened. No team in the NFL has a streak like that. So it is a refreshing break from the view of this fan.