Dallas Cowboys need to cash in air miles for success in 2016

Jun 16, 2015; Irving, TX, USA; Virgin America plane flies overhead of Dallas Cowboys Headquarters during Dallas Cowboys minicamp. Mandatory Credit: Matthew Emmons-USA TODAY Sports
Jun 16, 2015; Irving, TX, USA; Virgin America plane flies overhead of Dallas Cowboys Headquarters during Dallas Cowboys minicamp. Mandatory Credit: Matthew Emmons-USA TODAY Sports /

Sadly 2016 doesn’t bode well for the Dallas Cowboys when it comes to traveling to road games.

Last week CBS Sports revealed the number of miles each team will travel over an entire season. In recent years’ research has found a correlation between miles traveled and games won. The more time in the air, the less success on the field.

Unfortunately for the Dallas Cowboys, the 2016 schedule doesn’t bode well for them. The Cowboys will spend a total of 17,784 miles in the air this season – the 15th most in the league (excluding international games).

2016 Cowboys Opponents Mileage

  • 49ers – 25,330
  • Bucs – 19,202
  • Bengals – 16,866
  • Redskins – 16,256
  • Giants – 15,162
  • Vikings – 11,638
  • Eagles – 11,186
  • Lions – 9,536
  • Packers – 9,060
  • Bears – 8,750  
  • Ravens – 7,072
  • Browns – 6,066
  • Steelers – 5,138

"“In the 15-season period from 1997-2011, teams that traveled 2,000 miles or more for a road trip won only 39.8 percent of their games. That’s worse than the 43 percent of games won by teams that went on road trips that were 1,000 miles or less.” – CBS Sports"

Only two of the Cowboys opponents this season will travel more miles than them- that’s the San Francisco 49ers (25,330 miles) and Tampa Bay Buccaneers (19,202 miles). Their NFC East rivals all travel less (excluding the Redskins trips over the pond).

The shortest trips for Dallas are when they head north to face the Minnesota Vikings and Green Bay Packers- neither are particularly easy games considering they take place in chilly October and November!

"“Last season, road teams went 8-16 in games where they traveled 2,000 or more miles. That means road teams only won 33.3 percent of the time on long-haul trips last season. On the other hand, teams that traveled 1,999 miles or less won 47.6 percent of their games in 2015 (109-120), which is a huge difference.”"

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The Eagles traveled the fewest miles in 2015- so clearly there are exceptions! However, the Redskins were the next team with low mileage and they went on to claim the NFC East and make the Playoffs. The Cowboys were of course hit with injuries but they again traveled over 17,000 miles- more than the Eagles and Redskins combined!

In fact, from the 2015 schedule four of the five teams who traveled the most miles all went on to have losing records. 49ers, Dolphins, Raiders and Chargers went for a combined 22-32 while the Seahawks spent 25,086 miles on the road but managed a 10-6 season result.

All is not lost for the Cowboys though. Firstly, traveling in a plane owned by Jerry Jones isn’t exactly the type of long-haul flights you or I have experienced in the past! In fact, it’d probably be a fun day out!

Also, in 2014 the Cowboys were one of the teams to travel the most, yet they wound up with an 8-0 record on the road.

Maybe for Dallas they can continue their home away from home trend, whilst racking up a serious number of air miles to cash in on the short flight to Houston in February for Super Bowl LI.

Next: The Dallas Cowboys need chemistry, not tarnished talent

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