Ranking the greatest players in Dallas Cowboys history
By Randy Gurzi
Michael Irvin, simply known as ‘The Playmaker’, was one of the most dynamic wide receivers of his time. He played in Dallas from 1988 through 1999 and saw them grow from a struggling franchise to the most recognizable team in all of sports.
Irvin helped the Cowboys win three Super Bowls in the 1990s as he served as Troy Aikman’s No. 1 wideout. His numbers were spectacular during his prime including a 1,503-yard season in 1991 when he made his first Pro Bowl and a 1,603-yard campaign in 1995 when he made his fifth consecutive Pro Bowl.
That ended up being his best statistical campaign with No. 88 pulling in 111 receptions in addition to his personal best yardage and added 10 touchdowns.
Irvin’s career came to a sad end in 1999 when he suffered a serious neck injury in Week 5 against the Philadelphia Eagles. To this day, Dallas fans are bitter about the fact that Irvin’s injury was cheered by the fans in attendance by the Philly home crowd.
He never returned to play and shortly after legendary coach Tom Landry passed away, Irvin announced his retirement. This announcement made him the final player to be coached by Landry to call it a career.
For his career, Irvin is second in team history with 750 receptions and 11,904 yards. While he was passed by Witten, Irvin played in nearly 100 fewer games in his career. He also accomplished this on a team that featured the all-time NFL rushing leader in Emmitt Smith, meaning his numbers could have been even more impressive on a team that was more pass-happy.