Category Archives: NFL Dallas Cowboys History

FROM THE EDITOR’S DESK: Did you know … you can always find a show? | Dallas Cowboys audio archives | Dallas Cowboys video archives

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Coming into the fifth year of The Boys Are Back website, I thought it prudent to give it a tweak and find a few more ways to differentiate this site for others around the web. If you’re a regular visitor and loyal reader you already know this website is quite unique.  Continue reading →

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AMERICA’S TEAM–LOST LEGEND: Amazing journey ends for Dallas Cowboys first QB Eddie LeBaron | Fascinating life of American war hero | Eddie LeBaron Jr 1930-2015

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MAKING OF AMERICA’S TEAM: The Dallas Cowboys best all-time NFL draft picks round-by-round | Special Feature

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IRVING, Texas – This list centers on breaking down the Dallas Cowboys top NFL Draft picks in club history, round by round. These aren’t the best groups of draft picks in franchise history, but quite possibly the best in each round.

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LIGHTS, CAMERA, ACTION: Dallas Cowboys featured on NFL Network’s Dynasty Week

LIGHTS, CAMERA, ACTION - Dallas Cowboys featured on NFL Network's Dynasty Week - Roger Staubach

IRVING, Texas – This week is the Dallas Cowboys turn to be featured on NFL Network’s Dynasty Week, which runs each week with a new team throughout March.

The Cowboys are one of five NFL dynasties, along with the Packers, Patriots, Steelers and 49ers, that will be featured. Each “Dynasty Week” will feature team-related segments on NFL AM and NFL Total Access, as well as interviews with guests associated with each team.

Additionally, throughout the week NFL Network will show team-related editions of such shows as A Football Life, America’s Game, NFL’s Top 10 and Sound FX, as well as classic games and Super Bowl re-airs.

The series for the Dallas Cowboys begins Monday and continues through Sunday, April 6. Former Cowboys offensive lineman Nate Newton and former Cowboys defensive back Everson Walls are among the in-studio guests.

Cowboys Week features the following Cowboys-related programming:

Dallas Cowboys make a run unprecedented in NFL history by appearing in 12 championship games and five Super bowls - Dallas Cowboys history - 1960s 1970s 1980s

Monday, March 31

3:00 PM CT – NFL’s Top 10: Team Nicknames
4:00 PM CT – America’s Game: 1971 Cowboys
5:00 PM CT – Super Bowl VI: Dallas Cowboys vs. Miami Dolphins
5:30 PM CT – Sound FX: The Triplets
8:00 PM CT – A Football Life: Tom Landry
9:00 PM CT – The Road to Canton: Deion Sanders
12 Midnight CT – Hard Knocks: 2008 Cowboys: Episode 1
2:00 AM CT – NFL’s Top 10: Dallas Cowboys
3:00 AM CT – NFL’s Top 10: Thanksgiving Moments
4:00 AM CT – NFL’s Top 10: Team Nicknames

DALLAS COWBOYS HISTORY - The Great Wall of Dallas - Cowboys trenches paved the way for an NFL historic run - The Triplets

Tuesday, April 1

1:00 PM CT – A Football Life: Jimmy Johnson 
2:00 PM CT – The Road to Canton: Deion Sanders
3:00 PM CT – NFL Film Session: Emmitt Smith: Run with History
4:00 PM CT – America’s Game: 1977 Cowboys
5:00 PM CT – Super Bowl XII: Dallas Cowboys vs. Denver Broncos
5:30 PM CT – Sound FX: Terrell Owens
8:00 PM CT – A Football Life: Jimmy Johnson
9:00 PM CT – The Road to Canton: Michael Irvin
12 Midnight CT – Hard Knocks: 2008 Cowboys: Episode 2
2:00 AM CT – NFL Classic Games: 1975 Divisional Playoff – Dallas Cowboys vs. Minnesota Vikings
4:30 AM CT – Super Bowl XII: Dallas Cowboys vs. Denver Broncos

DALLAS COWBOYS HISTORY - The Great Wall of Dallas - Cowboys trenches paved the way for an NFL historic run - 1990's Dallas Cowboys offensive lineman huddle

Wednesday, April 2

1:00 PM CT – Super Bowl Classics: Super Bowl XXVII – Buffalo Bills vs. Dallas Cowboys
4:00 PM CT – America’s Game: 1992 Cowboys
5:00 PM CT – Super Bowl XXVII: Buffalo Bills vs. Dallas Cowboys
5:30 PM CT – Sound FX: Bill Parcells
8:00 PM CT – NFL’s Greatest Games: 1992 NFC Championship Game – Dallas Cowboys vs. San Francisco 49ers
9:30 PM CT – Super Bowl XXVII: Buffalo Bills vs. Dallas Cowboys
12 Midnight CT – Hard Knocks: 2008 Cowboys: Episode 3
2:00 AM CT – NFL Classic Games: 1992 NFC Championship Game – Dallas Cowboys vs. San Francisco 49ers

DALLAS COWBOYS HISTORY - The Great Wall of Dallas - Cowboys trenches paved the way for an NFL historic run - Mark Tuinei

Thursday, April 3

1:00 PM CT – NFL Classic Games: Week 17, 1993 – Dallas Cowboys vs. New York Giants
4:00 PM CT – America’s Game: 1993 Cowboys
5:30 PM CT – Sound FX: The Triplets
8:00 PM CT – A Football Life: The Great Wall of Dallas
9:00 PM CT – NFL Film Session: Emmitt Smith: Run with History
12 Midnight CT – Hard Knocks: 2008 Cowboys: Episode 4
2:00 AM CT – NFL Classic Games: Week 14, 1994 – Green Bay Packers vs. Dallas Cowboys

DALLAS COWBOYS HISTORY - The Great Wall of Dallas - Cowboys trenches paved the way for an NFL historic run - Dallas Cowboys offensive lineman Nate Newton

Friday, April 4

1:00 PM CT – Super Bowl Classics: Super Bowl XXX – Dallas Cowboys vs. Pittsburgh Steelers
4:00 PM CT – America’s Game: 1995 Cowboys
5:00 PM CT – Super Bowl XXX: Dallas Cowboys vs. Pittsburgh Steelers
5:30 PM CT – Sound FX: Tony Romo 
8:00 PM CT – NFL’s Top 10: Dallas Cowboys
9:00 PM CT – NFL’s Top 10: Thanksgiving Moments
12 Midnight CT – Hard Knocks: 2008 Cowboys: Episode 5
2:00 AM CT – NFL Classic Games: 1995 NFC Championship Game – Green Bay Packers vs. Dallas Cowboys

The 1968 Dallas Cowboys qualified for the playoffs for the fourth consecutive season - Dallas Cowboys history

Saturday, April 5

8:00 AM CT – A Football Life: Tom Landry
9:00 AM CT – A Football Life: The Great Wall of Dallas
10:00 AM CT – A Football Life: Jimmy Johnson
11:00 AM CT – Super Bowl Classics: Super Bowl XXVII – Buffalo Bills vs. Dallas Cowboys
2:00 PM CT – Hard Knocks: 2008 Cowboys: Episode 1
3:00 PM CT – Hard Knocks: 2008 Cowboys: Episode 2
4:00 PM CT – Hard Knocks: 2008 Cowboys: Episode 3
5:00 PM CT – Hard Knocks: 2008 Cowboys: Episode 4
6:00 PM CT – Hard Knocks: 2008 Cowboys: Episode 5
8:00 PM CT – A Football Life: The Great Wall of Dallas
9:00 PM CT – A Football Life: Jimmy Johnson
11:00 PM CT – A Football Life: Tom Landry
12 Midnight CT – NFL’s Top 10: Dallas Cowboys
2:00 PM CT – NFL Classic Games: 1992 NFC Championship Game – Dallas Cowboys vs. San Francisco 49ers

FIRST WIN - In September of 1961 the Dallas Cowboys defeated the Pittsburgh Steelers at the Cotton Bowl for their first ever franchise victory - Dallas Cowboys history

Sunday, April 6

8:00 AM CT – The Road to Canton: Michael Irvin
9:00 AM CT – The Road to Canton: Deion Sanders
10:00 AM CT – NFL Film Session: Emmitt Smith: Run with History
11:00 AM CT – Super Bowl Classics: Super Bowl XXX – Dallas Cowboys vs. Pittsburgh Steelers
2:00 PM CT – A Football Life: The Great Wall of Dallas
3:00 PM CT – A Football Life: Jimmy Johnson
4:00 PM CT – A Football Life: Tom Landry
5:00 PM CT – America’s Game: 1971 Cowboys
6:00 PM CT – America’s Game: 1977 Cowboys
7:00 PM CT – America’s Game: 1992 Cowboys
8:00 PM CT – America’s Game: 1993 Cowboys
9:00 PM CT – America’s Game: 1995 Cowboys
10:00 PM CT – Super Bowl VI: Dallas Cowboys vs. Miami Dolphins
10:30 PM CT – Super Bowl XII: Dallas Cowboys vs. Denver Broncos
11:00 PM CT – Super Bowl XXVII: Buffalo Bills vs. Dallas Cowboys
11:30 PM CT – Super Bowl XXVIII: Dallas Cowboys vs. Buffalo Bills
12 Midnight CT – Super Bowl XXX: Dallas Cowboys vs. Pittsburgh Steelers
12:30 AM CT – NFL’s Greatest Games: 1992 NFC Championship Game – San Francisco 49ers vs. Dallas Cowboys
2:00 PM CT – Super Bowl Classics: Super Bowl XXX – Dallas Cowboys vs. Pittsburgh Steelers

DESTINED FOR THE RING OF HONOR: Right or wrong, releasing DeMarcus Ware had to be difficult | Special feature

DESTINED FOR THE RING OF HONOR - Right or wrong, releasing DeMarcus Ware had to be difficult - Special feature - DeMarcus Ware Jerry Jones - The Boys Are Back website 2014

This was different. Yes, it was still business, no way around that, but this was also personal.

DeMarcus Ware wasn’t other people. He was a face-of-the-franchise guy, one who took that role quite seriously. He was the anti-diva, too, one who almost never declined a charity event or the signing of an autograph. The fans came first.

Ware, as much as any athlete I’ve covered, never forgot who he was. He was the kid no one wanted coming out of high school, the kid who used to clean out chicken coops. There was no diva in Ware. He just wanted a chance.

Amazingly, Ware was offered just a single football scholarship, that being from Troy. We’re talking all divisions, junior colleges and everything in between. Just one school was interested. If not for some former high school teammates already playing there and convincing the Trojans’ coaching staff, who knows what would have become of Ware.

He arrived in the NFL with high expectations and a skeptical head coach in Bill Parcells. It’s no secret that the Tuna preferred Marcus Spears or Shawne Merriman with the 11th overall pick of the 2005 NFL Draft in favor of Ware, and although the Dallas Cowboys were able to eventually land both Spears and Ware, Jerry Jones wasn’t budging on that first selection. The pick would be Ware.

There were many times Jones allowed Parcells to talk him into draft picks, but this wasn’t one of them. Jones and Parcells even made a little wager on how many sacks Ware would have his first five seasons. Jones won.

ANALYST’S INSIGHT - Jerry Jones and Bill Parcells helped each other - The Boys Are Back blog 2013

Parcells was tough on Ware, even more so than other rookies, which is truly saying something. Ware would bring his coach orange Gatorade during breaks in practice. Any other flavor wouldn’t suffice. Parcells would tell him how great Lawrence Taylor was back in his days with the New York Giants and that Ware was no Taylor. Not even close. There were instances Parcells would chew him out, tell him what he did wrong and on the very next snap, Ware would do exactly as Parcells said. Instead of acknowledging the positive result, Parcells would just turn and walk away, a disgusted look on his face. Ware could do no right.

The media would ask a question about Ware, mention a sack in a preseason game or how quick the rookie looked coming off the ball. Parcells would stare as only he could before saying, “Let’s not put him in Canton just yet, OK?”

Ware has told me that no one has ever treated him like Parcells did. He broke him down and built him back up and in the end, Ware gives the Hall of Fame coach a lot of credit for how his career turned out. It wasn’t easy that first season, though. Lot of tough love.

Reminded of that rookie season at his own Canton induction in 2013, Parcells said, “With this media the way it is nowadays and the internet and the social media, we’re quick to anoint these guys. You know, that’s the last thing he needed to hear, in my opinion, at the time because he really didn’t know what the hell he was doing and that was the truth. But he found out and he continued to do it well. I’m proud of him, and he’s turned into quite a football player.”

The numbers would suggest that Ware will one day join Parcells in Canton. And his career isn’t finished. So far, 117 sacks, and 32 forced fumbles. Seven Pro Bowls, four First Team All-Pro nods and a Second Team All-Decade selection for the 2000s. After a few solid seasons in Denver and the body of work should be more than enough.

This has to rank at the top of the list for most difficult decisions Jones has had to make in his 25 years of ownership, right there with allowing Emmitt Smith to sign with Arizona.

Jones adores Ware and vice versa. And they both always hoped Ware would be one of those guys who played his entire career with the same franchise. That is the ultimate honor for any NFL player, to play their entire careers with one team. Ware wanted that, told me on multiple occasions how important that was to him. In a perfect world, one without a salary cap, that would have been the case, too. Jones would have had no problems signing a few checks these last few years when Ware may have been overpaid. Cost of doing business. The salary cap made that difficult, though.

Ware earned all of the $75 million or so he made with the Dallas Cowboys. That’s a lot of dough, of course, but he never missed a practice, was never late to a meeting and never big-timed anyone, teammate, reporter or coach. The man worked every day like a rookie trying to make the team, and nothing more can be asked of an athlete.

He played every snap the same way, and he played hurt. There are at least 10 occasions in the last five years when the overwhelming majority of players would have sat. Instead, Ware took the field, most famously against undefeated New Orleans six days after being carted off the field with a neck injury against San Diego during the 2009 season. He literally cried on the field thinking his career was over and he’d never be able to play with his kids.

Then there was the finale against the Redskins in 2012, a division title on the line. Ware could barely come out of his stance, never mind make a play. There he was on the field, though. Whether he should have been or not is a debate for another day. Ware played 34 snaps and, he somehow, through sheer will, mustered a QB hit and hurry on Robert Griffin III.

REDSKINS at COWBOYS - NFL NFC East Rival - 2013-2014 Dallas Cowboys schedule - Washington Redskins vs Dallas Cowboys - DeMarcus Ware sacking RG III RG3 Robert Griffin III

Ware is one of those guys who will do anything for the team and on that day, in his mind, all he could do was take the field. Throughout his nine seasons in Dallas, he was always begging offensive coaches to let him take snaps at tight end, H-back, whatever. Let him block someone, throw him the ball, Ware just wanted to help. They never took him up on the offer, but he was willing. He was always willing for the team, for the fans, for the Dallas Cowboys. He was and is a class act.

The reaction Tuesday was rare in sports today. No one blamed Ware for leaving. Was just one of those situations in life. Not fair, not easy, it is what it is.

This was indeed different. DeMarcus Ware was and always will be a Dallas Cowboy, destined for the Ring of Honor a few years after he hangs them up. He’s just going to play for someone else the next few years.

And that sucks. No other way to say it.

Courtesy: Jeff Sullivan

DALLAS COWBOYS FOOTBALL CLUB: Looking back at Jerry Jones’ 25 year ownership of America’s Team | Special Feature

DALLAS COWBOYS FOOTBALL CLUB - Looking back at Jerry Jones’ 25 year ownership of America’s Team - The Boys Are Back website 2014

IRVING, Texas – Man, 25 wild and crazy years, zigging and zagging, laughing and crying, running and running faster, trying to keep up with the Joneses.

Never, ever – ever – a dull moment, from the one win of 1989 that kept the Dallas Cowboys from an unprecedentedly poor 16-game NFL season to the eight wins – again – of 2013, one short of acceptable for the third straight year.

Who knew 25 years ago this past Tuesday, Feb. 25, 1989, sitting in the Dallas Cowboys team meeting room out here at what we then were referring to as Cowboys Ranch late that Saturday night, that so many lives would irrevocably change when the then-Arkansas stranger Jerral Wayne Jones was being introduced as just the third owner of the world-renowned Dallas Cowboys.

His life, along with those of his wife Gene’s and their three kids: Stephen, Charlotte and Jerry Jr.

The lives of so many who had worked for the Cowboys – made the Dallas Cowboys – from Day One or for the majority of those first 29 years of the NFL’s first expansion franchise’s existence.

The lives of those who would follow the Joneses to Dallas.

And our lives, too, those of us in the media crammed into a room big enough to house a team of football players but bursting at the seams with nearly everyone already on deadline when the long-awaited announcement began sometime after 8 p.m.

Mine especially.

Tex Schramm Jerry Jones Bum Bright - Dallas Cowboys history - Jerry Jones announcement as owner general manager Dallas Cowboys

Me, I have mental snapshots of that evening, seeing on one hand the pure joy and excitement laced with some anxiety of the Jones Family and all of Jerry’s partners when he was introduced as the next owner of the Dallas Cowboys. But on the other hand, there was basically the team’s godfather, Tex Schramm, standing off to the side, with the glum look of a man attending his own funeral, realizing then the fact he no longer had a seat on center stage was symbolic of what was to come.

Hey, if Tom Landry was no longer needed, and he wasn’t since Jimmy Johnson was coming along with Jones in a package deal and had already been told by Jones what previous owner Bum Bright should have since he more or less resented Landry, surely the appropriately named Tex was not long for his world of 29 years either.

There was Jones, with almost preacher-like enthusiasm, rapidly talking of immediately winning with the 3-13 team he was inheriting, emphasizing his positivity with a fist pounding the air.

There were the arched eyebrows of the skeptical media, wondering what in the world … realizing the 29 years of Cowboys stability was being rattled as if the ground beneath an Apollo capsule launching into space.

A new day was dawning at dusk.

The last snapshot: After the final 30 was put on however many stories we could pound out by midnight, several writers gathered in Tex’s office, soon to be Jerry’s and still is. Sitting-on-the-floor room only. Again, a day of celebration on one hand, and rightfully so when you pledge $140 million you didn’t really have for an NFL franchise and accompanying stadium that were losing money hand over fist, and on this other hand a somber gathering, reminiscing about the good old days that were mostly great but now suddenly just good and old, growing more feint by the minute in the rearview mirror.

It was as if with these stories Tex was giving away his final possessions over drinks – stiff ones I might add – with the very people he had heartily laughed with yet angrily sparred with oh the many years.

“This is a very sad night for me,” Tex said needlessly.

And I distinctly remember this too: My Dallas Times Herald teammate, Frank Luksa, who had covered the Cowboys and Tom and Tex from nearly their 1960 inception, a man who thought he had seen it all, sitting on the floor next to me. He began to rise, held up his near-empty drink in a toast, saying unbeknownst to the rest of us, “Well, time to go home to celebrate what remains of my birthday.”

Will never forget his birthdate, singed into my mind.

And this, too, I’ll never forget, ever. A few days later, March 1, my life, as I perceived at the time, was turned upside down. A guy who was the sports department’s general assignment writer, handling an assortment of jobs, from helping out on the Cowboys to the Rangers to the Mavericks, college football, basketball and baseball, writing lengthy features and having just come off the previous year of covering the Olympics in Calgary and then Seoul, was told the Dallas Cowboys and Jerry Jones were your beat, buddy.

jerry jones sits with then university of miami coach jimmy johnson at a dallas restaurant. jones would hire johnson to replace tom landry soon after - the boys are back blog

You have been chosen to inherit the tradition set by such esteemed writers as Sherrod, Perkins, Luksa and Dent. No way, I said, not me. I’m not cut out for this. They told me I was perfectly fit, having helped out since the middle of the 1984 season and having covered nearly every game over what turned out to be the final four and a half seasons of Landry’s coaching career.

So there I went kicking and screaming, into what seemingly was a daily towering inferno. Every day – every day – there was something, starting with Jimmy Johnson’s introductory press conference on Monday, the Port Arthur native apologizing with hat in hand if he somehow had danced on Landry’s coaching grave, saying to those who had perceived so, “I’m sorry,” and me finishing my story that night with one line:

And so the Cowboys new era begins apologetically.

Then there came all the coaching changes. Jimmy’s new assistants being hired. Tom’s old assistants being fired.

Then there was Jerry, armed with the first pick in the NFL Draft saying, “Troy Aikman should play for half the price” just to get to be a part of the Dallas Cowboys organization. Oh my.

Next day having to do a long profile on Jimmy.

Next day Cowboys lower ticket prices for end-zone seats.

Then the start of Plan B free agency.

Then the owners meetings, along with the start of implementing instant replay and the league’s initial crackdown on steroids.

Then there was no vote on approving the Dallas Cowboys sale to Jones, leaving the deal hanging.

Then 29-year NFL commissioner Pete Rozelle’s retirement, he having just compared Landry’s dismissal with “the death of Lombardi.”

REFLECTIONS OF A CITY and NATION IN MOURNING - Understanding, and overcoming the obstacles of the 1960’s Dallas Cowboys - Tom Landry joins team in 1960

Then Jimmy’s first minicamp, along with the real possibility of Randy White and Danny White not being back with the team, which eventually came to fruition a few months later. Then the contract struggle with quarterback Steve Pelluer.

Let’s see, then Too Tall staying, Doug Cosbie leaving, Jimmy playing coy on Aikman being their No. 1 pick, Mike Sherrard leaving, Nate showing up at 358 pounds for offseason workouts, Barry Sanders challenging the NFL’s draft rules, petitioning as an unheard of underclassman for the draft. Landry throwing out the first pitch at a Rangers game. A Landry parade downtown Dallas. The schedule released, at New Orleans becoming the new era’s opener.

Tex Schramm resigning to head up the NFL’s Worldwide American Football League. Cowboys vice president Joe Bailey resigning to join him. Then eventually business manager Billy Hicks, too, to head across the pond. Then the NFL at a meeting in New York finally approving the sale to Jones. Then negotiations began with Aikman’s agent Leigh Steinberg. Then Aikman signing a six-year, $11 million deal, the richest contract for an NFL rookie to date as the Cowboys No. 1 pick. Then the draft.

Oh, we’re just getting started, and these moves were expected, Jerry wanting to get his own people in place, people he could trust not relying solely on those with allegiances to Tex and Tom. Sort of like if you’ve ever been to an Italian wedding or seen an old-day Italian restaurant run. Only the immediate family handles the money, you know, and immediate means wife, husband, kids, mother, father or grandparents. Seriously.

Then longtime Cowboys employees being let go: Day-Oner Gil Brandt, treasurer of 18 years Don Wilson, public relations man of 18 years Doug Todd, 22-year ticket manager Ann Lloyd. All hard to watch.

Gosh, and it wasn’t even May yet.

And remember, back in those days there were three daily newspapers in the Metroplex: ours, The Dallas Morning News and Fort Worth Star-Telegram. The competition was fierce. And remember, too, no internet. Ha, internet. No social media. No cell phones. Dimes and quarters were important commodities for payphones. You had one shot to get every story every night. And if you were a competitor you wanted the impossibility of every story every night, so that meant working to 11 nearly every night. Anxiety filled your sleep.

Then, well, mornings were hell. You were scared to death to grab those other papers for fear of getting beat in black and white. Remember, too, no updating if you didn’t have it all until the next day. Trying to keep up with Jerry and Jimmy was exhausting. They weren’t letting any grass grow under their feet. Blowin’ and goin’ was the slogan. Theirs was an immediate program, not some three-year plan.

By the first of June, felt as if my head was being centrifuged. We had a meeting of sorts, me and the sports editor, who told me I was doing a fine job. Maybe, I said, but I want out. I want my old job back. This is going to kill me. He said no way. I said I can’t. He said we’re eliminating your old position anyway.

I said, well, of course I’ll cover the Dallas Cowboys. Who wouldn’t want to, right? But again, not before agreeing kicking and screaming, having wanted desperately to run for cover.

So here it is 25 years later, and still covering the Cowboys in some form or fashion every single day since, and well, let’s see. By my count, the last game I missed was the season finale in 1988, 23-7 loss to Philadelphia. And swear, I’ve never done this before, so hang with me, that’s 25 seasons times 16 regular-season games a season, equaling, no way, an even 400 straight, along with the majority, but not every preseason game during that span of time.

Seen 1-15 and 13-3. Seen three Super Bowl victories and three consecutive seasons of 5-11. Seen a plane ride home from Philadelphia in 1991 after the Cowboys clinched their first playoff berth in six seasons – first winning season, too, in those six – that barely needed jet fuel to get off the ground, and now three consecutive seasons of 8-8.

Seen a losing franchise, both financially and athletically, become the richest in the United States and first to win three Super Bowls in a four-year span. Seen Hall of Fame coronations and the Jerry-Jimmy spat. Seen Switzer make me laugh until I thought I’d cry and Bill leave me in stitches even when he wasn’t trying to be funny. Seen Jimmy cry How ‘bout dem Cowboys! and smack those lips hard as he could losing those opening two games in 1993.

bill bates was the ultimate free agent for dallas cowboys - the boys are back blog

Seen triplets born to Bill Bates and Triplets land in the Ring of Honor. Seen Dave Campo come and go, and then come back again. Seen a free-agent quarterback rise into becoming the head coach and another rookie free-agent quarterback rise out of nowhere to become the franchise’s all-time leading passer. Seen Texas Stadium come crumbling down and AT&T Stadium rise from that gigantic hole in the ground.

Watched every carry of the NFL’s all-time leading rusher. Saw Michael Irvin the day he arrived hugging the life-sized cardboard cutout of Tom Landry and similarly hugging Jerry Jones the day he retired. Seen tragedies and attended funerals.

Seen it all for 25 years, every step of the way only because someone forced me to take that first step running after a guy I had never met until 25 years ago this past Tuesday. Exhausting, yes. Exhilarating, you bet.

Who knew?

And maybe the best part: 25 years is but a milestone. Got a feeling there’s still much more to come.

Courtesy: Mickey Spagnola | Columnist


RELATED: 25th Anniversary of Jerry Jones’ ownership of the Dallas Cowboys

Tex Schramm Jerry Jones Bum Bright - Dallas Cowboys history - Jerry Jones announcement as owner general manager Dallas Cowboys - The Boys Are Back website 2014

25 Years – Jerry Jones reflects on buying Dallas Cowboys; Replacing Tom Landry

This day, 25 years ago, Jerry Jones purchased the Dallas Cowboys. Listen to the Jerry Jones himself talk about the trials of the purchase, and the journey through the last twenty-five years.

(Watch Video | Listen Audio)


former dallas cowboys coach jimmy johnson and barry switzer - the boys are back blog

Tuesday, Feb. 25 marked the 25th anniversary of Jerry Jones franchise purchase of the Dallas Cowboys from Bum Bright in 1989.

Jones spent more than an hour Sunday on the Cowboys bus outside Lucus Oil Stadium in Indianapolis reminiscing about the historic transaction and the days leading up to it _ the nervousness and excitement that caused him to develop a heart condition called Arrhythmia and the huge risk he took, considering the Cowboys were not only a mess on the field at the time but where swimming in debt, losing $1 million per month.

“It was quite a trying time for me. I get emotional talking about it and I’ve asked a professional about why I get emotional talking about it in public or private and they said, well, that was a traumatic time for you. It was a pretty significant reach risk-wise and I didn’t know how it was going to turn out, so it was a nervous time for me. I developed arrhythmia, and I had never had an unhealthy day in my life. Arrhythmia is called by a lot of people and a lot of med students get it. It was from not resting and never sleeping and then getting up just after you lay your head down. So that kind of describes for me that period of time.”

On the warning his father told him about what would happen if he failed:

“I didn’t know, but I quickly found out the visibility that was involved there. My father called me about 10 days, two weeks into this thing and he said, ‘Jerry, I had no idea this thing would have the visibility it’s got and he said, I don’t care you are a young guy, and he said, ‘I don’t care whether you do it by mirrors, smoke or what, if you are not successful, you’ve got to make it look successful or you will be known by a loser and you won’t be able to do anything else for the rest of your life in terms of getting people to go along with you.’ “

On his biggest regret:

“If I had a chance to do it over again I would’ve waited a year and just got my feet on the ground a little bit more and probably just gone with the staff that we had and then later made the ultimate changes that I made. If I had to do that over again, I probably would do it because probably it was the urgency with how fast we had to move. That got a lot of the criticism that the changes that were made with the staff.”

So you regret hiring Jimmy Johnson and firing Tom Landry so callously:

“I don’t regret what I said was looking back because that contributed to the seemingly insensitive way that coach Landry was changed out and that contributed to it, the fact that it was done at the same time that we made the announcement there 25 years ago, that we made the announcement that I was buying the team, that I was going to be the general manager and all of that was done almost the same night. As a matter of fact, that was done the same night. So if I look back at the criticism, that’s one where you might have taken more time.”

Was Jimmy Johnson always going to be the guy to replace Landry:

“I thought of Barry (Switzer). I did think of Barry. But Jimmy is, of course, more active. He probably had more proximity. I kept up with Jimmy. My oil and gas partners were in Oklahoma City and I spent a lot of time around them. They were very prominent in OSU, Oklahoma State’s athletic department.  So that all fit real good. When I called Jimmy to tell him that I was looking at it, that I was interested — what would you think about joining me? His quote was: ‘I always wanted to be with you, work with you. If you called me to sell insurance, I’d sell insurance.’ So actually Jimmy came on and we officially – not officially – but we announced he was going to be the head coach and it was a significant period of time after that before we every got around to doing an agreement about money, before we even talked about money. He committed and left Miami and came to the Cowboys before we even talked about money.”

Jones on the nervousness of the financial risk because of the state of the Cowboys and NFL:

“I was excited. I was very nervous. I knew I had huge financial obligations. I knew they were ahead of me and I didn’t have all the answers as to how we were going to address them. I knew there were a lot of pitfalls in just the buying of the Cowboys, not necessarily clean. I bought 13 percent of the Cowboys from the FDIC. They had been foreclosed on. And so it was not in a nice complete operational routine. The franchise was not. All that made me extremely nervous. But had I not had the just sheer positiveness of just getting to be involved in the NFL, knowing that when I got up in the morning I would be in the NFL, knowing that I would be part of the Cowboys then those would have been issues in normal business that might have buckled my knees. But because it was so exciting to me to be part of the Cowboys I give that a lot of credit for working through those things. That was 25 years ago.”

Is the passion and excitement still there:

“Yes, of course. It is. Its actually there more than it was because I’m able to think more offense. I’m not as concerned as I was financially about the state of the franchise, about the NFL, about the game. The future is significantly brighter than it was in 1989 for the NFL, for pro football and for that matter pro sports today.  I never thought Gene (his wife) would be waiting tables over this deal. But I did think it had the potential to really knock my stuff in the dirt. I knew that it did. Lamar Hunt got up at one of our NFL owners meetings maybe 12 to 13 years ago. He got up and told the entire ownership that the greatest risk I have ever seen taken in sports was the one the Jerry took when he bought the Cowboys, financial risk. He was well aware of the situation with Cowboys. He was well aware of the lay of the land”

Jones blames his reputation as an owner who only cares about making money on his aggressiveness of being an agent of change in the NFL because of the poor financial state of the Dallas Cowboys organization and the league at time. 

“That’ll motivate you to be an agent of change. That’ll motivate you to want to change some things, and that was a part of the driving thing that early on in the NFL that I wanted to change for the benefit of everyone, but for the benefit of the clubs, for the benefit of the fans, I felt that we could do some things that would create more strength, more energy, and that was one of the reasons that I initially was as aggressive, and the other things was timing. I didn’t have time to sit there and wait on some of these changes 15 years or 10 years, you know the days and the time was burning, and so it had to be really, you had to move on it. So that’s one of the reasons that the perception of aggressiveness, or the perception of, for that matter, one of the things that I regret is that the perception about financial, the facts are I had financial security and gave it up to buy the Cowboys, and I didn’t buy the Cowboys to go make money. But once you get in the chair, once you get in the position, then you want to be as good and do as good as you can do. So that’s kind of how things have evolved over the years.”


RELATED – There’s MORE about Jerry Jones:

SPOTLIGHT – Dallas Cowboys owner and general manager Jerry Jones

To see all articles related to Jerry Jones click HERE

SUPER BOWL XLVIII RECAP: Seahawks victory has feeling of the young 1990’s Dallas Cowboys team

SUPER BOWL XLVIII RECAP - Seahawks victory has feeling of the young 1990’s Dallas Cowboys team

EAST RUTHERFORD, NJ — Too much of the discussion in the days leading up to this game had to do with Peyton Manning’s legacy.

Now that another NFL season has come to a close, let’s shift the focus to where it rightfully belongs.

Seattle’s rise.

A young, brash Seahawks team did more than beat Denver in Super Bowl XLVIII. Seattle’s 43-8 victory delivered a message to the rest of the league.

Beware. This isn’t a team catching fire late to win the title as Baltimore did last February. This isn’t the New York Giants or Green Bay Packers slipping into the playoffs on the final day and then beating the odds.

No, this is something different. It has the feel of Super Bowl XXVII in 1993 when the young, brash Dallas Cowboys burst on the scene with a 52-17 win over Buffalo.

SUPER BOWL XLVIII RECAP - Seahawks victory has feeling of the young 1990’s Dallas Cowboys team - Troy Aikman rollout

That was the first of three Lombardi Trophies in four years for the Cowboys. It’s premature to suggest the Seahawks will enjoy that sort of success. But their dominance was sobering.

“It’s all about making history,” Seattle safety Earl Thomas said. “This was a dominant performance from top to bottom.”

Seattle has been building for this moment ever since head coach Pete Carroll arrived four years ago. The Seahawks are young, fast, and deep on defense. They have a quarterback of poise and leadership beyond his years in Russell Wilson, a hammer for a running back in Marshawn Lynch, and a refusal to accept the limitations of inexperience.

Not one player on the Seattle roster appeared in a Super Bowl before Sunday’s game. The last team to make that claim was Buffalo in ’90.

Unlike that franchise, the Seahawks came away champions.

SUPER BOWL XLVIII RECAP - Seahawks victory has feeling of the young 1990’s Dallas Cowboys team - Metlife Stadium

“This is an amazing team,” Carroll said. “It started a long time ago, I’m talking four years ago. They never took a step sideways or backward to get to where they are now.

“These guys would not take anything other than winning this game. They didn’t think anything else would happen.”

It quickly became evident that nothing other than a Seattle win would be the outcome. The Seahawks defense came up with a safety 12 seconds into the game. Two plays later, on a crossing pattern to Demaryius Thomas, safety Kam Chancellor leveled the Denver receiver with a hit that registered on the Richter scale.

“All of my teammates came up to me and said that set the tone,” said Chancellor, the man who puts the boom in the defense’s Legion of Boom moniker.

Seattle controlled the ball for 14:41 of the first 18 minutes on its way to a 15-0 lead. The Seahawks later added a 69-yard interception return for touchdown by linebacker Malcolm Smith, the game’s Most Valuable Player, and opened the third quarter with an 87-yard kickoff return for touchdown by Percy Harvin.

About that time, the audience for Downton Abbey on PBS experienced a significant spike.

SUPER BOWL XLVIII RECAP - Seahawks victory has feeling of the young 1990’s Dallas Cowboys team - Downton Abbey

Injuries sidelined Harvin for all but 19 snaps during the regular season. The receiver rewarded the organization’s patience with that kickoff return and by leading the team in rushing with 45 yards on his two end-around runs.

“I was finally able to give my team something for four quarters,” Harvin said. “That meant a lot to me.”

This game was supposed to represent an intriguing clash of styles. It never did because Seattle’s No. 1 defense smothered Manning and the No. 1 offense of the Broncos.

The Seahawks forced four turnovers and held the Broncos’ high-octane offense to one meaningless touchdown once the lead ballooned to 36 points.

Yes, what happened Sunday was unexpected on several fronts. That doesn’t mean the Seahawks lacked faith. When the season got underway Wilson told his teammates, “Hey, why not us?”

Why not?

“We’re not sleeping tonight,” Carroll said of the impending celebration. “We’re staying up all night.”

There will be lot of sleepless nights around the NFL in the months and years to come figuring out how to compete with this young, brash Seattle team.

SUPER BOWL XLVIII RECAP - Seahawks victory has feeling of the young, brash 1990’s Dallas Cowboys team

SACKED FOR FIFTH TIME: Dallas Cowboys living legend Charles Haley again denied induction into NFL Hall of Fame

Charles Haley won’t be included in NFL Hall of Fame Class of 2014 - The Boys Are Back

IRVING, Texas – Once again, Charles Haley’s been left out of the latest Hall of Fame class.

This marked the fifth year Haley, who’s the only player in NFL history with five Super Bowl rings, was a Hall of Fame finalist without getting in. Michael Strahan, Andre Reed, Walter Jones, Derrick Brooks, Aeneas Williams, Claude Humphrey and Ray Guy all were named into the Class of 2014.

Haley ranks 12th in Cowboys history with 34 sacks and had 100.5 for his career.  He would have been the 13th former Cowboys player who accrued at least five years with the team to be named to the Hall of Fame.

Haley, who was the NFC Defensive Player of the Year twice in his career, joined the Cowboys in 1992 in a trade from San Francisco. Many believe Haley was the difference-maker on defense to put the team over the hump. Emmitt Smith, Troy Aikman and Michael Irvin were already in place and leading a high-octane offense, but it was Haley’s presence that added a needed piece.

The converted defensive end had six sacks in his first season but played a big role in the Cowboys having the No. 1 ranked defense in the NFL in 1992. In Super Bowl XXVII, Haley made a game-changing play when he sacked Bills quarterback Jim Kelly and forced a fumble, which was recovered in midair by Jimmie Jones for a touchdown. The Cowboys eventually pulled away for a convincing 52-17 win.

Haley had four sacks in 1993 but his most memorable moment came after a Week 2 loss to Buffalo, which dropped the Cowboys to 0-2. Haley emphatically slammed his helmet through a locker room wall at Texas Stadium and voiced his anger in the Cowboys’ not having signed Emmitt Smith, who was two games into a contract dispute with Jerry Jones and the organization. Haley’s comment, “We can’t win with a rookie,” in reference to Smith’s backup Derrick Lassic, might have been the final straw as the Cowboys and Smith came to terms the next week. Smith went on to have an MVP season and the Cowboys won another Super Bowl.

The Cowboys went back to the No. 1 defense in 1994 and Haley had his first double-digit sack season with the club with 12.5, including four in the season opener in Pittsburgh.

Haley had 10.5 sacks in 1995, battling through a bad back all season. He had a sack against the Steelers in Super Bowl XXX, which helped him earn his league-best fifth Super Bowl ring.

In three Super Bowls with the Cowboys, Haley had 2.5 sacks and he had 4.5 sacks in his five Super Bowl games played


RELATED: Charles Haley won’t be included in NFL Hall of Fame Class of 2014

SACKED FOR FIFTH TIME - Dallas Cowboys living legend Charles Haley denied his induction into NFL Hall of Fame - The Boys Are Back 2014

NEW YORK – Charles Haley’s wait continues.

The fifth time was not the charm for the former Dallas Cowboys defensive lineman, who again was denied entry into the Pro Football Hall of Fame.

Derrick Brooks, Walter Jones, Andre Reed, Michael Strahan, Aeneas Williams, Ray Guy and Claude Humphrey form the Class of 2014, announced Saturday night. Brooks and Jones earned enshrinement as first-year eligible candidates, and Strahan made it after missing last year in his first year of eligibility.

Williams and Reed have waited longer, with Reed in his ninth year of eligibility and Williams in his fifth. Guy, the first punter to earn induction and only the second true specialist, and Humphrey were seniors nominees.

The seven-man class will be enshrined in Canton this summer.

The 46 selectors met for a record 8 hours, 59 minutes, with Haley’s discussion taking 25 minutes. Discussion on Tony Dungy lasted 47 minutes, the longest of the day, with Brooks taking only 10 minutes.

Haley made the cut to 10, but he, Jerome Bettis, Kevin Greene, Marvin Harrison and Will Shields were eliminated in the reduction to five. Morten Andersen, Tim Brown, Eddie DeBartolo Jr., Tony Dungy and John Lynch were eliminated from consideration in the first reduction ballot from 15 to 10.

Haley, whose final retirement came following the 1999 season, has been eligible for enshrinement for 10 years. In that time, he has watched seven teammates inducted into the Hall of Fame.

It had seemed this might be Haley’s year.

He remains the only player with five Super Bowl rings, winning two with the San Francisco 49ers and three with the Cowboys.

Haley’s teams went 153-66, including 19-6 in the postseason. Only once in 12 regular seasons did his team have a losing record. That was in 1999 after he had retired and then unretired.

His teams won 10 division titles, and he played in seven NFC Championship Games. His teams missed the playoffs only twice.

DALLAS COWBOYS MERRY CHRISTMAS: Happy Holiday’s from the 2013 2014 Dallas Cowboys

happy holidays from the dallas cowboys - the boys are back blog - Dallas Cowboys 2013 2014 - Merry Christmas Dallas Cowboys - Dallas Cowboys Christmas

Happy Holidays From The Dallas Cowboys | 1:34

Inside this snow globe is the story of the Dallas Cowboys. (Watch this Video)


rock’n christmas spirit - cowboys stadium to feature holiday theme sunday - dallas cowboys - the boys are back blog

Dallas Cowboys: Inside The Locker Room

Step inside the Cowboys locker room with Mickey Spagnola after the Dallas Cowboys win over the Washington Redskins.

(Watch Video)

DALLAS COWBOYS HISTORY: The Great Wall of Dallas | Cowboys trenches paved the way for an NFL historic run | Special Feature

A Football Life series - NFL - The Great Wall of Dallas - Couresy NFL Films - Dallas Cowboys - America's Team

As we sit four weeks from what might be the first Dallas Cowboys playoff run in a few years, it’s time to take a look back at a little Dallas Cowboys history. If you’re a regular reader on this website you may remember that “trenches” is a common theme. We all know that winning teams (and subsequently NFL clubs with postseason) success usually comes down to the walls (trenches) they’ve built. Obviously it takes time for these men to coalesce and become cohesive as a single unit. I’m not suggesting that the 2013-2014 Dallas Cowboys offensive line compares to the 1990’s line that helped win three titles in four years. However, Jerry Jones and the Dallas Cowboys organization has added key components in recent years. This five part video series from NFL Films reminds us all of what can happen with the right mix of trench men. Enjoy!

DALLAS COWBOYS HISTORY - The Great Wall of Dallas - Cowboys trenches paved the way for an NFL historic run - Dallas Cowboys offensive linemen huddle

The Great Wall of Dallas- The Perfect Unit | (4:20) | (Watch this Video)

See which players comprised “The Great Wall of Dallas”.  Check out the guys who came out of nowhere to form one of the best offensive lines in NFL history. They helped pave the way for three NFL Hall of Famers.

DALLAS COWBOYS HISTORY - The Great Wall of Dallas - Cowboys trenches paved the way for an NFL historic run - The Triplets


DALLAS COWBOYS HISTORY - The Great Wall of Dallas - Cowboys trenches paved the way for an NFL historic run - Super Bowl Dallas Cowboys vs. Pittsburgh Steelers

The Great Wall of Dallas- Their First Super Bowl | 5:54 | (Watch this Video)

Actor Gary Busey used to hang around the Dallas Cowboys. Learn about Busey’s fandom and check out how the Dallas Cowboys won their first Super Bowl with “The Great Wall of Dallas.”. Buffalo Bills fans may want to skip to the next video.


DALLAS COWBOYS HISTORY - The Great Wall of Dallas - Cowboys trenches paved the way for an NFL historic run - Dallas Cowboys offensive lineman Nate Newton

The Great Wall of Dallas- Nate the Kitchen | 7:00 | (Watch this Video)

Former Dallas Cowboys offensive lineman Nate Newton was known for being extremely overweight, but that does not mean he did not make light of the situation. See how he compared to former Chicago Bear William ‘the refrigerator” Perry and gained stardom thanks to John Madden.


DALLAS COWBOYS HISTORY - The Great Wall of Dallas - Cowboys trenches paved the way for an NFL historic run - Mark Tuinei

The Great Wall of Dallas- The End of the Line | 5:36 | (Watch this Video)

Mark Tuinei and Erik Williams had very interesting roads to success. See how the two became a big part of the Dallas Cowboys and also how Nate Newton overcame drug issues to help give back to the community.


DALLAS COWBOYS HISTORY - The Great Wall of Dallas - Cowboys trenches paved the way for an NFL historic run - 1990's Dallas Cowboys offensive lineman huddle

The Great Wall of Dallas- Where Are They Now? | 10: 52 | (Watch this Video)

Find out what Nate Newton, Mark Stepnoski, John Gesek and Kevin Gogan are doing now. Also, see which former member of the great offensive line passed away, but left lasting memories for all of his teammates.

Courtesy: NFL | NFL Films | NFL: A Football Life series | Dallas Cowboys


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DALLAS COWBOYS UNIFORMS: Everything ever wanted to know … and more! (UPDATED)

New Nike 2013 Dallas Cowboys Football Uniform - New Dallas Cowboys helmet, jersey, and uniform history - Official NFL Dallas Cowboys uniform jersey and helmet

A popular page on The Boys Are Back website was revised today. Complete with new pictures and updated information. Enjoy!

To check it out, click on the page titled ‘Dallas Cowboys Uniforms” or on the button below:

Dallas Cowboys Uniforms - Dallas Cowboy uniforms - Dallas Cowboys jersey helmets uniforms history - button


Original post from October 12, 2011:

https://theboysareback.wordpress.com/2011/10/12/dallas-cowboy-uniforms-everything-ever-wanted-to-know-and-more/

REFLECTIONS – A CITY/NATION IN MOURNING: Understanding the obstacles of the 1960’s Dallas Cowboys (Special Feature–Revised)

REFLECTIONS OF A CITY and NATION IN MOURNING - Understanding, and overcoming the obstacles of the 1960’s Dallas Cowboys - President John F. Kennedy

To understand how difficult it was to make the decision about whether or not to play NFL games on Nov. 24, 1963, you must understand how different news and television were 50 years ago.

I had just started working as a radio newswriter in Minneapolis. Radio was the primary source for breaking news for most people, and newspapers still had huge circulations. Television news primarily consisted of two programs — the Huntley-Brinkley Report on NBC and the CBS Evening News with Walter Cronkite. ABC was not a serious competitor. Everything was in black and white, and if you wanted to change the channel, you had to get out of your chair and turn a knob on the set.

News was shot on film, meaning it had to be physically transported to the television station, developed and edited before it could air — a process that took a minimum of one hour and could take several. Sound film cameras were big — think about carrying around a couple of cement blocks — and could record a maximum of 12 minutes before changing the film was required. The only videotape machines were massive items, and tape had to be physically edited, a cumbersome process. To transmit news from anywhere, you had to order — well in advance — physical lines from AT&T. Most news was distributed by two wire services — AP and UPI — on machines that printed 60 words per minute. The news sat on the machine until someone went to read it. If you were in the field and wanted to make a call, you had to find a pay phone or talk someone into letting you use a private phone. And if you called someone and they were not there, there were no answering machines — you had to keep calling until someone answered.

JFK Assassination

REFLECTIONS OF A CITY and NATION IN MOURNING - Understanding, and overcoming the obstacles of the 1960’s Dallas Cowboys - President John F. Kennedy 1963 in Dallas

Why is all this important? The coverage and dissemination of news was slow (although the facts probably were more accurate) and this made the decision-making process slow as well. Parts of JFK’s visit to Dallas were being covered locally only because the local stations decided to pool their resources. But NBC and CBS were not carrying the coverage. In fact, the networks were not even on the air — stations were carrying their own local programming. It took some time for the national coverage to begin, but when it did begin, it went commercial-free for four days, the first time that had happened.

JFK was, for my generation, the first president who didn’t look like he could be my father. He was young, he was funny and he had a beautiful wife. JFK also was the first “sports” president anyone of my generation knew. Eisenhower played golf, Truman walked and Roosevelt was limited by his paralysis due to polio. The Kennedy family played touch football on the lawn, sailed on Nantucket Sound and went on lengthy hikes. Kennedy actually played golf but refused to let that be filmed to draw a contrast with the Republicans.

Kennedy had intervened with the National Guard in 1961 to allow Paul Hornung to play for the Green Bay Packers in the NFL title game. He was conscious of his image as a young, sports-minded male, and people bought it.

Kennedy was assassinated around noon on a Friday. Nothing like this had ever happened in my lifetime. No one knew if this was an isolated incident or if there was a plot to assassinate other government officials (both the president and vice president were in Dallas); rumors were flying. In fact, the announcement of JFK’s death was delayed to let Johnson get on his way to the airport and Air Force One. Even after Johnson was sworn in and back in D.C., no one was sure what was happening.

So, NFL Commissioner Pete Rozelle had to weigh all this and make a decision in a short amount of time, consulting with a number of people who gave him differing opinions. In the end, NFL games were played, although there was no television coverage of them. And Rozelle later said he had made the wrong decision.

RELATED VIDEOS: A look back, fifty years after the JFK Assassination

REFLECTIONS OF A CITY and NATION IN MOURNING - Understanding, and overcoming the obstacles of the 1960’s Dallas Cowboys - 1963 Dallas Cowboys

A CITY IN MOURNING: Understanding the obstacles of the 1960’s Dallas Cowboys

07:12 – When John F. Kennedy was assassinated, it impacted the entire world. See how the Dallas Cowboys were affected by the death as Gil Brandt looks back into history and recounts the JFK experience. (Watch Video)

A CITY and NATION IN MOURNING - Understanding the obstacles of the 1960’s Dallas Cowboys - Dallas Cowboys history - NFL decides to play games Sunday following JFK assassination

A NATION IN MOURNING: Understanding the obstacles of the 1960’s NFL

04:12 – When John F. Kennedy was assassinated, it impacted the entire world. NFL Commissioner Pete Rozelle later regrets deciding the league will play games the following Sunday. (Watch Video)

The NFL has been part of America’s recovery, more than once - Dallas Cowboys history

A NATION IN MOURNING: The NFL has been part of America’s recovery, more than once.

04:12 – When John F. Kennedy was assassinated, it impacted the entire world. The NFL has faced a nation in crisis several times throughout it’s history, including the Great Depression, Pearl Harbor, and 911 attacks. This video takes a look at how the NFL, and Americans, moved forward during these difficult times. (Watch Video)

Special thanks: Bob Eaton; Gil Brandt;


November 22, 1963 – Looking back at that moment in American history

REFLECTIONS OF A CITY and NATION IN MOURNING - Understanding, and overcoming the obstacles of the 1960’s Dallas Cowboys - JFK in Ft Worth Texas 1963

Though he was nearly a year away from the 1964 election, President John F. Kennedy knew it was campaign season even in November of 1963. And one of the most important states he needed to win was Texas. Kennedy along with his wife, first lady Jacqueline Kennedy, boarded Air Force One on Nov. 21 for a two-day, five-city trip through the state. Starting with San Antonio, then Houston, they eventually visited Fort Worth. With Vice President Lyndon B. Johnson, Kennedy exits the Hotel Texas in Fort Worth. On Friday, Nov. 22, he will greet crowds and make a speech. It’s 8:45 am.

Continue reading →

AMERICA’S TEAM CROSSING POND: Dallas Cowboys headed to London for 2014 matchup with Jacksonville

AMERICA’S TEAM CROSSING POND - Dallas Cowboys headed to London for 2014 matchup with Jacksonville

IRVING, Texas – For the majority of 54 seasons, the Dallas Cowboys have enjoyed the moniker of being America’s Team.

Now, they’re going to officially take the show to England.

AMERICA’S TEAM CROSSING POND - Dallas Cowboys headed to London in 2014 - Dallas Cowboys play in Wembley Stadium

For the first time in franchise history, the Dallas Cowboys will play a regular-season game overseas. In 2014, Dallas will participate in one of the NFL’s three scheduled games in London for the 2014 International Series. The Cowboys will play the Jacksonville Jaguars, who are giving up their home game, to play America’s Team at Wembley Stadium.

NFL Commissioner Roger Goodell officially announced the move this week in London, revealing all three matchups. Along with the Cowboys and Jaguars, the Falcons will host the Lions and Oakland will host the Dolphins.

Dallas Cowboys to play at Wembley Stadium, in London, England during the 2014-2015 NFL season - America's Team Wembley Stadium, London England

While the dates have the game will be announced at a later time, the Cowboys and Jaguars are expected to have their bye week following their matchup in London. 

For years, Cowboys owner Jerry Jones has said his team could play in the London game, but always as the road team. With AT&T Stadium drawing anywhere from 80,000 fans to as much as 105,000, the Cowboys would never agree to give up one of their eight home games.

Dallas Cowboys owner Jerry Jones said his team could play in London game, but as the road team - America's Team London, England UK

However, the crowds in London have been rather respectable over the years. Since the NFL first started playing regular season games in London in 2007, the games are averaging 82,443 in seven games. From 2007-2012, the NFL has played just one game per season in London. This year, two games are scheduled and next year the league is bumping the number up to three.

International Series has increased NFL fan interest in the UK London England - America's Team London England - NFL fans Europe - Dallas Cowboys

“Our fans in the UK continue to demonstrate their passion for more football,” Goodell said.  “Next year for the first time we will play three regular-season games in London.  We have scheduled three attractive games with four teams playing in their first International Series game.  The growing enthusiasm for the NFL internationally is exciting and we look forward to continuing to respond to this interest in our game.”

The International Series has increased NFL fan interest in the UK, with a current fan base of more than 12 million, including 2.5 million avid fans, a 30 percent increase in avid fans in the past two years.

NFL fan interest in the UK fan base of more than 12 million - America's Team UK fans - Dallas Cowboys UK London, England 2014 NFL season

Television ratings have shown substantial growth in the UK since 2006 – with Sunday viewership of NFL games almost doubling and the Super Bowl audience having increased 75 percent.  The league also has developed new and stronger business partnerships.

NFL-Regent-Street-Flags - Dallas Cowboys’ opponent fans London America's Team Dallas Cowboy fans UK London England

Participation in amateur football in the UK has risen since the start of the International Series, growing by approximately 15 percent per year since 2007.

America's Team Dallas Cowboys played in first American Bowl in 1986, met Chicago at Wembley Stadium - NFL International Series

The Cowboys’ opponent next year might garner a few fans in London by next year’s game. Not only are the Jaguars playing the 49ers this week, but Jacksonville has agreed to play in the UK every year through the 2016 season.

The Dallas Cowboys played in the first American Bowl in 1986, when they met Chicago at Wembley Stadium. Dallas also played Detroit in London in the 1993 preseason.

The Dallas Cowboys have also played preseason games in Tokyo, Toronto, Mexico City and Monterrey.

But unlike all of the other meetings, next year’s game will actually count in the standings.

Editor comments: This website can vouch for the NFL’s claim about significant interest coming from the UK. Our website hits from the United Kingdom are ranked fourth behind the United States, Canada, and Mexico. Fans following the Dallas Cowboys (and NFL) on this website have originated from 152 countries around the world. The European nations, when combined, are ranked #2.

RIVAL HEADLINE–PHILLY: Why do YOU hate the Cowboys?

Cowboys Camp Football

THERE IS a great Christmas song that proclaims, “It’s the most wonderful time of the year.” While I love the season from Thanksgiving through New Year’s Day because people are actually nice to each other and concentrate on things that are most important – family and friends – it is not the most wonderful time of the year!

That’s actually October, if you are a sports fan.

There is a plethora of football to watch, both college and pro. The baseball playoffs are in full swing, culminating with the World Series and all its tension and excitement. Hockey season has begun in earnest and the NBA launches at the end of the month.

To cite one example of how great October can be, consider if you lived in Boston. Last Sunday was a day you would never forget – unbelievable comebacks by the Patriots and Red Sox in big games. Yes, October is the most wonderful time of the year – the only month all four major sports are going on at the same time.

This year, October is even more special because tomorrow the Eagles play the Cowboys at home with first place in the NFC East at stake. Good god, I hate those Cowboys!

On Wednesday, I was on the train coming back from New York and I was sitting with my cousin Steven, a brilliant psychiatrist, his aide, Marguerite, and two rambunctious women named Sarah and Jennifer. We had a great time as they helped me create the “Top 10 Reasons I Hate the Cowboys.” Though they were my reasons, the crew helped me put them in descending order. It was great fun and I strongly recommend you do it with your friends. We share many of the same reasons, but ranking them as to which make you hate the ‘Boys the most is a hoot.

So here’s my Top 10:

10. The Star – What unbelievable conceit to make a star the symbol of your team and paint it right smack in the middle of the field. How did that star look at the end of the pickle-juice game (the 2000 season opener when the Eagles consumed pickle juice to combat dehydration from the 109-degree game-time temperature and beat the hosts, 41-14)?

9. Jimmy Johnson’s hair – Gelled and lacquered into a steel-like, immovable ‘do, and harder than those obnoxious Cowboy helmets. (I must admit to a tad of envy here.)

8. Cowboy (or AT&T) Stadium – A gaudy, incredibly extravagant mausoleum to Jerry Jones’ ego. Hey, Jerry, with Texas having the highest percentage of people without healthcare coverage of any state in the nation, couldn’t you have thought of a better use for your money?

7. Troy Aikman on TV – This ex-Cowboys QB has never gotten over the physical and scoreboard beating administered to him by the Buddy Ryan-led Birds. He takes it out on the Eagles every chance he gets with his slanted, hateful anti-Eagles commentary.

6. The “Don’t Mess With Texas” attitude – Everything is bigger and better in the Lone Star state, or so they think. Rick Perry as governor? Not so much. Cowboy Stadium is a great example of this. One thing that’s for sure: Everything is more arrogant in Texas, especially if it has anything to do with this football team!

5. Conceited, cocky, arrogant stars, past and present – Michael Irvin, Neon Deion, Tony Romo, Dez Bryant: I can’t stand any of them. (Jason Witten is an exception, but he should have been an Eagle. Remember, we picked L.J. Smith in the draft when Jason was still available.)

4. No cheesesteaks, hoagies, soft pretzels or Tastykakes are sold at Cowboy Stadium – Hard to believe, but true. I went to see the Birds play in Dallas once and sat in Ross Perot’s box. There was white wine, caviar, smoked salmon, Brie and crudités served with nary a soft pretzel to be found. They wouldn’t have lasted 5 minutes in the 700 level at the Vet!

3. Jimmy Johnson’s favorite phrase, “How ‘Bout Them Cowboys?” – I’m sick and tired of hearing it! Hey, Jimmy, how ’bout the fact that “Them Cowboys” have only won one playoff game (the dreaded “air guitar” game vs. the Birds, unfortunately) in more than a decade?

2. Jerry Jones – Need I explain? This unbelievably arrogant owner is the epitome of the conceit, braggadocio and excess that makes us hate the Cowboys.

1. “America’s Team” – Aaaaagh!! Who would have the gall to call themselves America’s Team? Who nominated them? Did we get to vote on this? This self-proclaimed title has inspired many faux fans around the nation to claim to be Cowboy rooters, but they all probably think a rollout is what you do with toilet paper and that the wildcat formation is found at the zoo.

So that’s my list. Have fun coming up with yours. To sum it up: “Cowboys suck,” and with injuries to Ware and Murray, the Birds win easily, 34-23.

Courtesy: Edward Rendell | The Daily News

Editors comment: Pretty lame article, granted. Not much creativity in Philly. After all, why remain bitter about Jimmy Johnson (and his hair) 25 years later? Seems like a “if you can’t beat ‘em … bash ‘em” mentality in the City of Brotherly Love (and resentment). Still, take a moment to vote in their poll. As you’d expect, it’s tilted towards a Philly win on Sunday. Let your voice be heard! While we’re at it … how ‘bout serving cheesesteak on Texas Toast with BBQ sauce for your gameday tailgate? Cheesesteak is basically shaved Texas beef brisket! Go Cowboys … hard pretzels, star and all!!

LEADING AMERICA’S TEAM: Dallas Cowboys quarterback Tony Romo set for 100th career start

LEADING AMERICA’S TEAM - Dallas Cowboys quarterback Tony Romo set for 100th career start - 2013-2014 Dallas Cowboys roster

IRVING, Texas – Nearly seven years ago exactly, Tony Romo led the Dallas Cowboys on the field in Carolina for a Sunday Night Football clash with the Panthers. Ultimately, the goal that game was to help the Cowboys get off the 3-3 mark and get a big road win.

Obviously, that will be the same goal for the Cowboys on Sunday afternoon in Philadelphia in a matchup of 3-3 teams for the NFC East lead.

But what a difference 99 starts can make.

That game in Carolina was Romo’s first-ever start in the NFL. Heading into it, he was simply the rookie free-agent quarterback who had been a backup for four seasons and was taking over for Drew Bledsoe.

Now, he’s the franchise quarterback of America’s Team and holds numerous passing records.

Romo enters Sunday’s game with the Eagles for his 100th career start, knowing the mindset now is much different than it was the first time around.

“You’re always trying to get better,” Romo said. “Start one, you’re excited to prove to yourself if you can actually do this. Start 100, it’s all about getting your team to where you want to go. It’s a little more individual to prove to yourself. With 100, it’s all about bringing the team there and winning as a team.”

Overall, Romo is 58-41 as a starter, but things haven’t exactly been on the rise over the last three seasons. Since 2009, when Romo led the Cowboys to the franchise’s first playoff win in 13 seasons, he is just 20-24 as a starter and has yet to lead the team to a winning season, much less a playoff spot.

This year, Romo is putting up great numbers despite the team’s average record. He ranks second in the NFL behind only Peyton Manning with a 108.6 passer rating. He’s thrown 14 touchdowns to just two interceptions, although one of them was rather costly in a 51-48 loss to Manning and the Broncos. Romo threw for a Cowboys’ record 506 yards and also tossed five touchdowns before the late-game mistake.

A lot has transpired for Romo since his first start. In fact, Romo said he’ll enter Sunday’s game with the Eagles worrying about things that he barely knew existed when he first got the nod against Carolina.

“It’s a far different process before a game now,” Romo said. “It’s just what I’m looking for – what I know I need to be very sound leading up to the game to gain an advantage.”

For the record, Romo led the Cowboys to a win that night in Carolina. The Panthers grabbed a 10-0 lead and Romo tossed an early interception. But he fired a touchdown strike to Jason Witten to help the Cowboys get back to 14-10 at halftime and that was the score heading into the fourth quarter.

That’s when the Cowboys turned the tide, outscoring the Panthers 25-0 in the fourth to pull away for a 35-14 win. Romo went 24 of 36 for 270 yards with a touchdown and interception. And he actually led the Cowboys to five wins in his first six starts, including a four-game winning streak. Romo made the first of three Pro Bowl selections during that 2006 season. And it all started that night in Carolina. 

Overall, Romo ranks third on the Cowboys’ all-time list in starts, behind only Troy Aikman (165) and Roger Staubach (114). Last year, he surpassed Danny White (92) and Don Meredith (85).


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Tony Romo: Winning On The Road (7:40)

Dallas Cowboys quarterback Tony Romo speaks to the media about the upcoming game against the Philadelphia Eagles. (Watch Video | Play Audio)

MAN FROM MONMOUTH: Miles Austin’s 2009 breakout game in Kansas City was turning point

MILES FROM MONMOUTH - Austin’s 2009 breakout game in Kansas City was a turning point

IRVING, Texas – Some of the greatest games in Dallas Cowboys history can be categorized by a single player.

There’s a “Clint Longley Game” with his 1974 comeback throw to Drew Pearson on Thanksgiving Day. Jason Garrett has a game in beating the Packers exactly 20 years later. Even Emmitt Smith has a game with his heroic effort against the Giants in 1993.

And without a doubt, Miles Austin is included on that list. The “Miles Austin Game” occurred at the very place the Dallas Cowboys will revisit Sunday afternoon when they take on the Chiefs.

MILES FROM MONMOUTH - Austin’s 2009 breakout game in Kansas City was a turning point - catch

There is where Austin made his first career start, thanks to a rib injury to Roy Williams the previous week in Denver. To that point in his four-year career, Austin had played in 41 games, but had a total of 23 catches for 436 yards and four touchdowns.

Three hours later, Austin set the Cowboys’ single-game record with 250 receiving yards on 10 catches and two touchdowns, including a 60-yard score in overtime to give the Cowboys a much-needed 26-20 win over the Chiefs.

“Right at the end, we score and everyone jumps on the pile at the end …” Austin recalled. “It was a turning point for our season and obviously a turning point for me and my life. I thought it was a great team win. And I was glad to be a part of it.”

But Austin was more than just a part of it – he was basically the reason for it.

MILES FROM MONMOUTH - Austin’s 2009 breakout game in Kansas City was a turning point - 4th quarter TD catch

Austin had a game-tying touchdown catch over the middle in the fourth quarter. He then came back in overtime with a sideline grab before he broke a tackle attempt by Brandon Flowers and jaunted down the sideline for the score. The 250 yards broke Bob Hayes (246) single-game record for the Cowboys and marked the first time in NFL history a player recorded 250 yards in his first career start. It was also the first time in league record books a player had scored a game-winning touchdown in overtime in his first start.

The Cowboys head coach knows a thing or two about taking advantage of the moment in his own right. The win over Green Bay in 1994 is one of the more memorable moments in Cowboys history and obviously of his own career.

But as a coach, Garrett said Austin’s game in Kansas City ranks pretty high as well.

“It really was one of the best days I have been around in football – both as a player and as a coach,” said Garrett, the Cowboys offensive coordinator that day. “Miles Austin comes from Monmouth University as an undrafted free agent. He has an unbelievable way about him as a person and the approach that he takes as a football player. When a guy like that who comes from where he comes from and goes about it the way he does has that kind of success when he gets his opportunity … to this day I still kind of feel the thing down the back of my neck.

“It’s what this thing is all about. He goes about it the right way. He’s a pleasure to coach. It was a great day for him. It was a great day for our team. “

MILES FROM MONMOUTH - Austin’s 2009 breakout game in Kansas City was a turning point - celebration

The Cowboys entered the bye week after the Chiefs game with a 3-2 record. They followed the off week by winning three straight games en route to an 11-5 season. It was also the first time the Cowboys won a playoff game since 2009.

But while Austin’s performance in Kansas City is considered his most memorable, arguably as impressive was the follow-up game he had against Atlanta the next week. Austin proved his effort against the Chiefs was no fluke by torching the Falcons for 170 yards on six catches and two more scores.

So in the first 41 games, Austin had 436 receiving yards and four touchdowns. In those two starts, he had 420 yards and four touchdowns.

“I got lucky that the two teams we played were man teams. They had no film on me,” Austin said. “I had a big play in the Atlanta game, just running across the field. It was a great two-game stretch for sure. It’s been great ever since then.”

Austin made the Pro Bowl both in 2009 and 2010 and received a monster contract extension worth $54.1 million over seven years.

MILES FROM MONMOUTH - Austin’s 2009 breakout game in Kansas City was a turning point - Miles Austin Brandon Carr

Hamstring injuries have plagued him the last two seasons but he had a relatively healthy training camp and started off the 2013 campaign Sunday night by tying his career-high in catches with 10. While he didn’t go for 250 like he did in Kansas City, Austin was effective in the first half with underneath routes as the Giants took away the deep ball. He finished with a team-high 72 receiving yards.

Any time a player is coming off a game with double-digit catches, he should be a focal point for the opposing defense the following game.

Then again, considering his last trip to KC, that was probably already in the plans.


MAN FROM MONMOUTH - Miles Austin’s 2009 breakout game in Kansas City was turning point - Video

Miles Austin remembers 2009 KC game (Duration – 3:04)

Dallas Cowboys wide receiver Miles Austin sat down with Nick Eatman to discuss his coming out party in Kansas City in 2009.

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THE MYSTIQUE OF AMERICA’S TEAM: NFL’s 1993-1994 NFC Championship–San Francisco 49ers vs. Dallas Cowboys

Dallas Cowboys History - 1994 NFC Championship - Dallas Cowboys vs. San Francisco 49ers - Jimmy Johnson

HISTORIC MOMENTS: NFL’s 1994 NFC Championship Game

On January 23, 1994 the Dallas Cowboys defeated the San Francisco 49er’s 38-21, and Jimmy Johnson’s famous “How bout them Cowboys!” quote from the previous year’s NFC Championship Game in Candlestick Park.

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Editors comment: As a reader pointed out, the original title of this post suggested that this NFC Championship lead to the “Making of America’s Team.” In fact, the term “America’s Team” became popular after Bob Ryan (of NFL Films) used it while preparing the Cowboys 1978 season highlight film. Also, Jimmy Johnson’s “How ’bout them Cowboys” quote came after the 1992-1993 NFC Championship Game in San Francisco. 


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IRVING ERA ENDING: Dallas Cowboys moving world headquarters to Frisco, Texas

Dallas Cowboys World Headquarters will be moving to Frisco, TX - The Boys Are Back blog

FRISCO, Texas — The Dallas Cowboys formally announced Tuesday they are moving their headquarters from suburban Irving to suburban Frisco after winning overwhelming approval for a $115 million development that includes an indoor stadium for practice and use by area prep teams.

Jerry Jones moving Dallas Cowboys World Headquarters to Frisco, TX - The Boys Are Back blog

Accompanied by cheerleaders and city officials, Cowboys owner Jerry Jones and his son, executive vice president Stephen Jones, made a quick trip home from training camp in Oxnard, Calif., to celebrate Frisco officials. The multi-use sports facilities, which will be shared with Frisco Independent School District’s sports teams, are expected to open in 2016.

“Frisco is a city (that) they think big and they act bold. They have a vision and they act on it,” Stephen Jones said. “It gives us great comfort to do business with people who think like this.”

Dallas Cowboys - new Frisco indoor training facility

The stadium will be paid for mostly through a city sales tax, with the school district funding part of the construction. The deal, which was approved late Monday, calls for the Cowboys to manage the facilities and pay operating costs.

Dallas Cowboys owner Jerry Jones shakes hands with Frisco Mayor - The Boys Are Back blog

School district officials said they already were planning on building a football stadium before singing onto this private-public deal.

“We could in no way duplicate a stadium of this caliber on our own, spending the same amount for construction,” said Jeremy Lyon, Frisco ISD’s superintendent.

Lyon said the partnership will save taxpayers money in the long run by splitting costs after the stadium is open.

Jerry Jones press conference announcing the relocation of the Dallas Cowboys headquarters and practice facility to Frisco - The Boys Are Back blog

Frisco is already the home of the FC Dallas of Major League Soccer, a minor league affiliate of baseball’s Texas Rangers and the training facility for hockey’s Dallas Stars. It is about 30 miles north of Dallas and about 45 miles from AT&T Stadium in Arlington.

Young fans welcome the Dallas Cowboys to the team's future headquarters in Frisco - The Boys Are Back blog

John Classe, a board member with the city who voted for the deal, said FC Dallas had a similar deal to what the Cowboys are getting, with the city funding its stadium but leaving leasing and management costs to the team.

“Just like that deal, it’s anticipated that the Cowboys will put more money into the facility above and beyond the city’s commitment,” Classe said. “Therefore we will end up with a nicer facility.”

Dallas Cowboys new facility in Frisco Texas - The Boys Are Back blog 2013

The 91-acre development includes 25 acres for the Cowboys’ facilities, while the remaining 66 acres will be used for stores, restaurants and a luxury hotel. According to city officials, the development will generate $1.26 billion in tax revenue with an estimated economic impact of $23.4 billion over the next 30 years.

This deal ends a four-decade relationship between the Cowboys and the City of Irving.

PRO FOOTBALL HALL OF FAME CLASS OF 2013: Jerry Jones presents Larry Allen for enshrinement

Pro Football Hall of Fame Class of 2013 member Larry Allen is presented for enshrinement by Dallas Cowboys owner Jerry Jones
Jerry Jones presents Larry Allen for Enshrinement (Video)

Pro Football Hall of Fame Class of 2013 member Larry Allen is presented for enshrinement by Dallas Cowboys owner Jerry Jones. (Duration – 3:19)

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Dallas Cowboys lineman Larry Allen's speech from the 2013 Pro Football Hall of Fame enshrinement ceremony - The Boys Are Back blog

Larry Allen Hall of Fame Speech (Video)

Dallas Cowboys lineman Larry Allen’s speech from the 2013 Pro Football Hall of Fame enshrinement ceremony in Canton, Ohio. (Duration – 16:08)

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Editors comment: Larry Allen was known for ‘not talking’ during his NFL career. As an avid listener, to all things Dallas Cowboys, it was a rare treat to actually hear him speak today! He was noticeably nervous, but you’ll see that the crowd was supportive and seemed to put him at ease. I strongly recommend watching both of these videos, whether you’re a relatively new Dallas Cowboys fan or an old cowpoke from back in the day! Enjoy.

WTF–CALLING ON AMERICA’S TRUE BLUES: Your Dallas Cowboys team is currently ranked #2

Currently, your Dallas Cowboys are ranked #2 on the NFL FAN REWARDS program! Check out the embarrassing rankings below …

What is wrong with this picture - Dallas Cowboys ranked number two

The New England Patriots ranked #1 (in points earned, fan participation)??? Seriously??? That should bother any self-respecting Dallas Cowboys fan!!!

Nothing wrong with this picture - Dallas Cowboys ranked number one in fans

Sure, the Dallas Cowboys are ranked #1 in registered fans. There are 308,903 Dallas Cowboys fans registered for NFL FAN REWARDS. That’s something to be proud of … but, there is a problem …

What is wrong with this picture - Dallas Cowboys ranked 31 in average points

The Dallas Cowboy FANS aren’t racking up enough points! Look at that! Registered fans that signed up and forgot who they’re representing in the world of NFL fandom … America’s Team … God’s Team! Aren’t you embarrassed? We’re down in the basement with the likes of the Cleveland Browns for God’s sake! Lions! Chiefs! Bears! and lowly Cincinnati Bengals!

NFL FAN REWARDS - What right about America - robertdknight in top five - The Boys Are Back blog 2013

I know for a fact that some True Blue fans are racking up the points (like your fearless editor on this blog – robertdknight) … participating regularly (like myself, even loosing valuable sleep on occasion)… racing home before the midnight daily deadline … pumping up those point totals like real men! Then, we have the slackers! Shame on YOU!

NFL FAN REWARDS - you could win valuable prizes like this priceless keychain - The Boys Are Back blog 2013

Not to rub it in … but you could OWN one of these valuable prizes with your NFL FAN REWARDS coins! Boast about the significant discounts (5-20%) on the NFL photo store or the NFL shop. That pencil eraser could be YOURS! Think about it … you could save 10% on that new Miami Dolphins Ray Finkle jersey for your father in law!  Who doesn’t need NFL logo’ed socks for the wintertime? And the picture over the fireplace … ditch it! Snatch up custom framed photograph of Bernie Kosar (sportin that star on his helmet) from the NFL photo store! You need this stuff! Your spouse will totally understand and appreciate your dedicated effort. The mowing and edging can wait! Rain washes cars!

NFL Fan Rewards program - The Boys Are Back blog

Don’t worry. As you’ve come to expect, I have the solution! Drop everything, put the kids in bed, seal yourself off from the rest of the world … and dedicate your life to this worthy cause! I promise that your testosterone levels will increase 50% and your penis will grow 30% by the time you reach Hall of Fame status (which I will reach this month)! You trust me, right?

Click HERE to register for the NFL FAN REWARDS program. Make me proud!!! Walk with that Jimmy Johnson swagger!

EVE OF THE ENSHRINEMENT: Gil Brandt’s 50 memories for the Pro Football Hall of Fame 50th anniversary

nfl pro football hall of fame - fifty years - the boys are back blog

Gil Brandt has watched the Pro Football Hall of Fame grow with the game since it opened in 1963 — and he had an up-close-and-personal view in his capacity as a key member of the Dallas Cowboys’ front office. In honor of the Hall of Fame’s 50th anniversary, Gil offers 50 thoughts and memories about the Hall that he’s accumulated over the decades as a football lifer.

EVE OF THE ENSHRINEMENT - Gil Brandt’s 50 memories for the Pro Football Hall of Fame 50th anniversary - The Boys Are Back blog 2013
STANDOUT HALL OF FAMERS

1) The Hall of Fame is full of guys with great backgrounds, but one of my favorite personal stories belongs to Rayfield Wright (Class of 2006), who was, of course, a key cog on the Dallas Cowboys when I was with the team. At his enshrinement, he told the story of how he was ready to quit football before his Fort Valley State coach kind of turned him around, getting him to play safety and tight end — and then he ended up getting into the hall as an offensive lineman. Fittingly, he had his college coach introduce him at the Hall.

2) One of the first players I saw who I knew was going to get into the Hall someday was Forrest Gregg, the longtime Green Bay Packers offensive lineman who spent a season with the Cowboys at the end of his career. I saw him at SMU and then as a rookie. He probably played the offensive tackle position as well as anyone, period — as good as Johnny Unitas was at quarterback. Obviously, offensive tackles don’t get the attention quarterbacks get, but I thought Gregg was probably the best.

3) If I had to pick the best class, I’d have to say it was the first class, from 1963, just because of all the people in it: guys like Sammy Baugh, George Halas, Don Hutson, Curly Lambeau, John (Blood) McNally, Bronko Nagurski and Jim Thorpe.

4) I also liked the Class of 1994, because it included two Cowboys, Tony Dorsett and Randy White, plus a third guy, Jackie Smith, who ended his career in Dallas. I liked that class a lot.

5) The Class of 2000 had really good players: Howie Long, Ronnie Lott, Joe Montana and Dave Wilcox, plus Dan Rooney. Wilcox was one of those guys who fought for success the hard way after starting out at Boise Junior College.

6) Roger Staubach is one of the Hall of Famers who wowed me the most on the field, though of course he had plenty of chances to do so, given how much time I spent watching him. I also thought Deacon Jones and Ray Nitschke were special.

7) When it comes to the guys we can see on old film, one of the most impressive Hall of Famers is Arnie Weinmeister, who played defensive tackle for the New York and Brooklyn Yankees football teams in the 1940s before joining the New York Giants in the ’50s. He was just the toughest guy.

Hall of Fame players 1964 NFL Draft, the most in any single year. Dallas Cowboys QB Roger Staubach, Paul Warfield, Bob Hayes, Dave Wilcox, Paul Krause, Mel Renfro, Charley Taylor, Carl Eller and Bob Brown

8) The best quarterback in the Hall is Roger Staubach. First of all, he came back to the game after being in the armed forces for five years, which is something, because historically, guys never came back from breaks like that without losing a step or two. Staubach was the catalyst for the Cowboys; he was a great leader, both on and off the field — even the guys on the other teams respected him greatly.

9) One of the best non-quarterbacks in the Hall has to be Eric Dickerson. He was a dominant guy; he was Adrian Peterson during a time when it was much harder to be Adrian Peterson, because we didn’t have things like motion or do things like split people out.

10) Also, of course, there was Jim Brown. What Jim Brown did was unbelievable, especially when you consider that offensive linemen had to block with their shoulders at the time.

11) Other standouts: Merlin Olsen, a 14-time Pro Bowler who was simply a dominant factor for his team, and Bob Lilly, who was light years ahead of his time. Lilly was bigger, faster and quicker than anybody you’ll ever see.

12) The most impactful coach/contributor in the Hall is George Halas. He helped form the league and run the league, and he dictated policy. Plus, he was a great coach for the Chicago Bears.

13) Ray Nitschke was one of the more influential players in the Hall in terms of being the leader at the luncheon on enshrinement weekend. I think it was his idea to have the luncheon on Friday. Deacon Jones took over that role from Nitschke. It will be interesting to see who takes up the mantle this year, now that Jones is gone.

14) Of course, I like to think that I have about 85 good friends in the Hall (because I think I know just about every guy in there), but one of my best friends is probably Green Bay Packers fullback Jim Taylor. I’ve known him a long time. You know, when you’ve competed against somebody and he’s beaten you twice for the right to go to the Super Bowl, he tends to stick out in your mind.

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NFL HALL OF FAME: Dallas Cowboys Larry Allen enshrinement just days away

nfl pro football hall of fame in canton - 2013 inductees - Larry Allen - the boys are back blog

Seven new legends were elected to the Pro Football Hall of Fame on Saturday, Feb. 2, 2013 in New Orleans, La. The group – Larry Allen, Cris Carter, Curley Culp, Jonathan Ogden, Bill Parcells, Dave Robinson, and Warren Sapp – will be formally inducted during a memorable Enshrinement Ceremony at Canton’s Fawcett Stadium on Saturday, Aug. 3.

LARRY ALLEN Guard/Tackle … 6-3, 325 … Sonoma State, Butte Junior College (CA) … 1994-2005 Dallas Cowboys, 2006-07 San Francisco 49ers … 14 seasons, 203 games … Selected by Cowboys in 2nd round (46th player overall) of 1994 draft

 

Cowboys Seahawks Football

Versatile, played every position on offensive line except center during 12 seasons with Dallas … Led way in second season for Emmitt Smith who set Cowboys’ franchise record with 1,773 yards … Started at right guard in two NFC championship games and Super Bowl XXX victory … Named NFL Alumni’s Offensive Lineman of the Year in 1997 and the NFL Players Association NFC Lineman of the Year twice (1996-97) … Named first-team All-Pro seven straight years … First-team All-NFC six times, second-team once … Moved to tackle late in 1997 and entire 1998 season, earned All-Pro honors at position … Signed as free agent with San Francisco in 1996 … First season with 49ers led way for Frank Gore who set team single-season rushing record (1,695 yards) … Elected to 11 Pro Bowls … Named to NFL All-Decade Teams of 1990s and 2000s … Born November 27, 1971 in Los Angeles, California.

 

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SONOMA STATE OF MIND

Allen played for four high schools and then Butte College for two years. He then sat out a year before playing at Division II Sonoma State in California. Allen caught the eye of the Dallas Cowboys, who selected him in the second-round of the 1994 NFL Draft.

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CLUB RECORD

Allen set a club record with 10 starts during his rookie season. He even admirably filled in for the injured Erik Williams in the 1994 NFC Championship Game in San Francisco as Allen himself played on a hurt ankle for most of the game.

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PRO BOWLER

Larry Allen earned the first of seven consecutive trips to the Pro Bowl in 1995. He was one of four Cowboys’ offensive linemen to be selected to the Pro Bowl for the season.

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SUPER BOWL XXX

Larry Allen helped the Cowboys beat the Steelers 27-17 in Super Bowl XXX. It was the first Super Bowl ring for Allen, but the third for the 1990s Cowboys and fifth in club history.

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UNSTOPPABLE

Larry Allen broke his right hand during 2000 training camp, but he played every game that season for the Dallas Cowboys to earn a sixth-consecutive Pro Bowl spot.

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PLAYOFF CONTENDER

Larry Allen missed most of the 2002 season with injuries that required surgery. He returned in 2003 to earn his eighth Pro Bowl nomination, and he helped lead the Cowboys to the playoffs.

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ALL-DECADE

Allen played his final two seasons with the 49ers and again continued to pile up Pro Bowl nominations. He would be selected to 11 Pro Bowls and was a member of the All-Decade Teams of the 1990s and 2000s.

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INTO THE SUNSET

Larry Allen signed a one-day contract with the Dallas Cowboys in 2008, so he could retire with the team that drafted him.

AROUND THE NFL: Adrian Peterson foresees topping Emmitt Smith’s record in 2017

Jul 27, 2013; Mankato, MN, USA; Minnesota Vikings running back Adrian Peterson (28) as he leaves the field at training camp at Blakeslee Fields. Mandatory Credit: Bruce Kluckhohn-USA TODAY Sports

This year’s Minnesota Vikings are in goal-setting mode.

Pass rusher Jared Allen says Michael Strahan’s single-season record of 22.5 sacks is “absolutely reachable,” and Adrian Peterson repeatedly has talked about running for 2,500 yards.

Peterson didn’t stop there. Fresh off his dominant 2,097-yard campaign, Peterson is thinking long-term: Specifically, Emmitt Smith’s NFL record of 18,355 rushing yards. (Watch video HERE)

Peterson is 9,506 yards away, and Dan Wiederer of The Star Tribune has done the math. If Peterson stays on his career pace of 98.4 yards per game, he’ll top Smith in Week 4 of 2019.

Peterson says he’ll get there sooner.

“I’ve been in the league seven years,” Peterson told Wiederer. “I’m already right around (9,000). Calculate it out … Let’s think. Maybe get a couple 2,000-yard seasons … I’ve got … Hmmm … 2017.”

Drilling down, Peterson targeted Week 16 of that campaign, which charts out to 120.3 yards per game without a hiccup.

Emmitt Smith Rushing Stats:

AROUND THE NFL - Adrian Peterson foresees topping Emmitt Smith's record in 2017 - The Boys Are Back blog 2013

Adrian Peterson Rushing Stats:

AROUND THE NFL - Adrian Peterson foresees topping Emmitt Smith's record in 2017 - AP stats - The Boys Are Back blog 2013

COWBOYS AT&T STADIUM: NBC Sports will debut new Red-Zone 360-degree view in Giants-Cowboys opener

COWBOYS AT&T STADIUM - NBC Sports will debut new Red-Zone 360-degree view in Giants-Cowboys opener - FreeD - The Boys Are Back blog 2013

OXNARD, Calif. NBC Sports and the Dallas Cowboys announced that they will work with Replay Technologies Inc. to provide a unique, new 360-degree “FreeD” look at red-zone plays for viewers watching NBC football telecasts and fans at the game in AT&T Stadium. 

“FreeD” (free dimensional video) will debut during the Sept. 8 Sunday Night Football New York Giants-Dallas Cowboys opener.  In addition, NBC Sports will use the system for the October 5 Notre Dame-Arizona State game, and the October 13 Redskins-Cowboys SNF game (in addition to any Cowboys home games flexed into primetime) at AT&T Stadium.  Fans in the stadium will also see “FreeD” replays on the scoreboard at all home games, as well as on Cowboys local programming during the season.

The “FreeD” system will utilize 24 high-speed cameras mounted in the stadium — 12 in each red zone placed on both sides of the field from the 20-yard line to the goal line and in the back of each end zone — to provide replays of key red-zone plays from a 360-degree perspective, enabling fans to see the action seamlessly.

“We are excited to partner with NBC Sports to bring a new look at replays to our fans,” said Charlotte Anderson, Dallas Cowboys executive vice president. “We are always striving to be on the cutting edge of technology and innovation.   Just as our center hung video board has changed the way our fans view the game, we believe that this ‘FreeD’ technology will add a unique viewing dimension for our fans at every game.”

NBC Sports and Dallas Cowboys Replay Technologies unique new 360-degree FreeD red-zone - Cowboys AT&T Stadium - The Boys Are Back blog 2013

This :35 second video will blow your mind … Click HERE to check it out

“The Cowboys are the perfect partner, because AT&T Stadium is the most technologically advanced stadium in the world, and the organization is constantly striving to provide the best entertainment experience for their fans,” said Fred Gaudelli, coordinating producer of Sunday Night Football. “Being able to seamlessly move from side to side and around an entire play without switching shots will entertain and inform the fans at the stadium and watching our telecast. Fans will think they are playing a video game or watching a Sci-fi movie, but they’ll actually be viewing football as never presented before.”

RELATED: ‘FreeD’ brings 360-degree camera views to NBC football this fall

FreeD brings 360-degree camera views to NBC football this fall - Dallas Cowboys AT&T Stadium - The Boys Are Back blog 2013

Sure, the Palace in Dallas, newly rechristened AT&T Stadium in a naming rights deal worth upwards of $19 million a year, may be a $1.2 billion monument to excess to Texas-style size and excess. But that doesn’t doesn’t mean the high-end gadgetry inside can’t be put to good use. 

This season, in conjunction with Replay Technologies Inc., the Dallas Cowboys and NBC Sports will introduce 360-degree, “FreeD” replay views for red-zone action (from the 20-yard line to the end zone), available for viewers watching NBC’s football broadcasts, local Cowboys broadcasts in Dallas, and those inside the stadium staring up at 23,040 square feet of center-hung LED Diamond Vision display. Twenty four cameras – 12 on each side of the field – placed strategically allow depth and color to be calculated for every pixel within visible coverage. The information is then built into 3D models enabling fully orbiting views without switching cameras. The effect is like a combination of The Matrix-style “bullet time” and the latest Google Maps animations, with any moment of action viewable from almost any conceivable angle.

The system makes its maiden NFL voyage on Sept. 8, when the Dallas Cowboys host the New York Giants and will be used again on October 13th when Dallas hosts Robert Griffin III and the Washington Redskins. Fans of college football will also get a taste of FreeD when Notre Dame plays Arizona State on the 5th of October, at AT&T Stadium as part of this year’s “Shamrock Series.”

Fred Gaudelli, producer of “Sunday Night Football” for NBC, told the Television Critics Association Sunday the decision to place the system in Dallas was no accident. “It literally takes a month to install this system,” he said. “Obviously, we’re doing games every single week. So there’s only one system in the world.  We basically had to put it in a stadium we knew we were going to be at least twice. Pray for three times.” 

No sport has a larger, more dedicated television watching audience than the NFL. FreeD promises fresh views of a football game’s most critical moments. (Including potentially soul crushing, late game mistakes). The upcoming NFL season contains a nearly endless array of compelling questions. If, for you, one happens to be “If Tony Romo and The Matrix had a baby, what would it look like?” 

Your answer is coming.

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