The Cowboys are no strangers to disappointment. It is rare to go a whole season without that team letting their fans down, and this year has been no different.
After beginning the season 3-0 as the hottest team in football, the Cowboys followed that by going 0-3. A perfect example of the Dallas Cowboys Roller Coaster Effect. This trend continued by Dallas getting humiliated in front of the whole country on Thanksgiving against the Bills, and then again against Mitch Trubisky and the Bears on Thursday Night Football.
As soon as Cowboys’ fans had given up all hope, they beat up on the Rams 44-21… only, incredibly, to be held touchdown-less against the Philadelphia Eagles. But despite all of that, there is still a very real chance the Cowboys could sneak into the playoffs. The question is, do we really want to see that happen. The answer is no, at least for me.
The reasons are these:
1) Dallas has been embarrassed on national television too many times
2) it is more fun to watch the Eagles get embarrassed on national television
3) the Cowboys could use a head start on the offseason.
The Cowboys should be in line for a massive overhaul, staff, and roster. On the staff side, it is straight forward, Jason Garrett (along with some assistants) will be gone, it is just a matter of finding replacements, which could end up being more difficult than it seems.
On the roster side, it gets a little more difficult. Almost every member of the Cowboys secondary is set to be a free agent including Pro Bowl cornerback Byron Jones, who has been the Cowboys’ most consistent player all year.
In addition, Dak Prescott and Amari Cooper are up for new contracts. Unfortunately only one of those guys can get a new contract and only one of them can get a franchise tag, leaving one of those three out. Whether that is Amari Cooper or Byron Jones, Dallas will look to the draft to replace them.
Another pro to the Cowboys missing the playoffs is a valuable draft selection. Right now, the Cowboys are sitting at the 15th pick, although that could very easily change. With a loss on Sunday to the Redskins, Dallas, depending on other game outcomes, could move up as far as the 10th pick. That is unlikely but no matter what, with a loss, Dallas will move up from the 15th pick.
With a win and an Eagles win, which means the Cowboys miss the playoffs, the Cowboys will move back, but they will still get a top-20 pick. If the Cowboys win and the Eagles lose and the Cowboys make the playoffs they will fall back and the earliest pick they can receive is 21st.
Sure, the Cowboys could go on a 2012 New York Giants type playoff run. They are certainly talented enough. The problem is, it’s not about the talent. It’s about everything but talent.
We’ve seen who the Cowboys can be in the win over the Rams, but we’ve also seen who the Cowboys really are, in all of those humiliating losses. A playoff appearance will not fix who this team really is.