History Says Beating Texans Would Put Cowboys on Path to Playoffs | NBC 5 Dallas-Fort Worth
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History Says Beating Texans Would Put Cowboys on Path to Playoffs

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    NEWSLETTERS

    If the Cowboys are able to beat the Texans Sunday at AT&T Stadium, their storied history suggests they’ll have an 87 percent chance of making the playoffs.

    In their 55-year history the Cowboys have started a season 4-1 on 15 occasions. Of those 15, they went on to make the playoffs 13 times. A victory over Houston obviously wouldn’t assure Dallas of anything in a young NFL season just crawling into October, but at 4-1 they would certainly be on the right track to their first post-season berth since 2009.

    The Cowboys, favored by almost a touchdown over their intrastate rivals, are also attempting to win four consecutive games, something they haven’t achieved since 2011.

    But, more importantly, at 4-1 the Cowboys would put themselves in a positive position that only twice in their history has failed to produce a playoff appearance.

    The last 4-1 start by Dallas came in 2008, when the addition of Pacman Jones was supposed to be the final piece to a puzzle that fell apart the year before, despite a 13-3 season. That team stated hot, but plummeted down the stretch and lost a win-or-go-home finale in Philadelphia by an embarrassing 44-6. The only other 4-1 start that cratered came in 1984, when the Gary Hogeboom-quarterbacked Cowboys lost their last two games to finish 9-7.

    Thirteen other 4-1 starts continued into the postseason, including Super Bowl championships in 1995 and 1992 and a loss in Super Bowl X in 1975.

    1966  Yes 10-3-1    Lost NFL Championship Game

    1967  Yes  9-5    Lost NFL Championship Game

    1972  Yes  10-4     Lost NFC Championship Game

    1975  Yes  10-4     Lost Super Bowl 10

    1979  Yes  11-5     Lost Divisional Playoff Game

    1980  Yes  12-4     Lost NFC Championship Game

    1981  Yes  12-4     Lost NFC Championship Game

    1982  Yes  6-3     Lost NFC Championship Game

    1984  No  9-7     Lost final two games of season

    1985  Yes  10-6     Lost Divisional Playoff Game

    1992  Yes  13-3     Won Super Bowl 27

    1994  Yes  12-4     Lost NFC Championship Game

    1995  Yes  12-4     Won Super Bowl 30

    2003  Yes  10-6     Lost Wild Card Game

    2008  No   9-7     Lost final two games of season

    A native Texan who was born in Duncanville and graduated from UT-Arlington, Richie Whitt has been a mainstay in the Metroplex media since 1986. He’s held prominent roles on all media platforms including newspaper (Fort Worth Star-Telegram, Dallas Observer), radio (105.3 The Fan) and TV (co-host on TXA 21 and numerous guest appearances, including NBC 5). He currently lives in McKinney with his wife, Sybil, and two very spoiled dogs.