The Dallas Cowboys are looking to bounce back this season after a disappointing 2019 campaign. Their 2020 schedule won’t be doing them any favors though.
The Dallas Cowboys head into this upcoming season with a ton of expectations loaded on their shoulders. Rightfully so, as they’ve shown what they could be on both sides of the ball over the past two years, although not together at once in either season consistently enough.
While they have a few things to figure out as a team, such as contract scenarios, pecking orders, and where new pieces fit into the grand scheme of the gameplan, they should still be a team looking to compete at the highest level this season.
When you also consider the fact that they were a peak underachieving team on last season when you think about how good they should have been, they should be more than eager to come out and win some ball games.
While that is most certainly the hope, as it is at the beginning of every season, you do have to consider the schedule as a factor as well. Although we tend to do this every season, to a positive outcome or otherwise, it’s something that we must take into consideration.
In doing so this year, as the NFL schedules were released over the past few weeks, we came to this conclusion. The Cowboys’ schedule does them absolutely no favors this year.
While every NFL team certainly has to navigate tricky terrain and a schedule similar to that of the Cowboys, with the NFL being one of the most evenly competitive sports leagues in the world, the Dallas Cowboys seem to have an extra landmine or two along the way.
Let’s take a tally of their home and away games, excluding the home and away series with each of their division rivals. With six of those games in total, it should give us a total of five each left for non-divisional home and aways.
San Francisco 49ers
Los Angeles Rams
When you look at each list, the first thing you should notice is that the away games tend to all be against much stiffer competition than the home games. With the final away game being in Cincy and most likely against the number one overall pick in Joe Burrow, that won’t be a breeze either.
Lord forbid that they turn out to be a decent team from the jump in just his rookie season, but by that time in the season for starting rookie quarterbacks and especially those drafted as high as he was, they have usually figured out enough or gotten into just enough of a professional quarterbacking rhythm to be dangerous. Yes, that means he could beat you.
If being tasked to help open up the Rams’ new stadium to open the season wasn’t enough, the Cowboys will then head to Seattle in Week 3 to play in what has come to be one of the toughest away atmospheres in the NFL. With a few home games and divisional away games in between that one and this next one, they go to the bitter cold of Minnesota to face the Vikings late in November.
They finally end their non-divisional road duties in the first two weeks of December with consecutive away games in Baltimore and against the aforementioned Cincinnati Bengals, but only after being home for one week after the Minnesota game mentioned above. What a smooth ride that should be.
Look, this isn’t a cry for help or a pity party, it’s a close and realistic look at what’s before them this season. Not to mention the fact that these are just the non-divisional road games, with home games and all divisional games, no matter the locale, to be just as tough as well.
If the Dallas Cowboys were looking for the conditions primed to make a statement, they sure will have them this year. With a quarterback in Dak Prescott under fire from a section of his fanbase for standing up for what he considers to be a fair and equitable long-term contract based on market dictations and with a team coming off a vastly underachieving season in the year prior, this could be a season to remember.
It could also just as well be another one that we just want to forget, but can’t. Either way it plays out though, the scheduling gods didn’t intend to make it easy for this year’s Cowboys. It’ll be a wild ride regardless, fun or terrifying, we just can’t wait to get it started.