ARLINGTON, TX - AUGUST 21: Dallas Cowboys team owner Jerry Jones looks on during a preseason game against the Tennessee Titans at Dallas Cowboys Stadium on August 21, 2009 in Arlington, Texas. (Photo by Tom Pennington/Getty Images)
It is true that the Cowboys are in first place, a game ahead of the Eagles; true also, though, is that the best December in recent memory was that of 2007, when the team went 2-2 and were beaten by the Giants in the divisional round of the playoffs. And, as you surely know if you are the owner of either some degree of literacy or a television, Dallas hasn't won a playoff game since 1996.
After meeting with the players, Jones spoke to reporters, outlining his discourse on humbleness and December struggles.
"This is a time when there shouldn't be anybody smug, shouldn't be anybody feeling full of themselves by where we are," Jones said. "We should really sit down here and see because we may not, on an individual basis, ever get to be in a spot like this again.
"So, let's spend the next six weeks really blocking everything out as much as we can and zero in on the playoffs."
Because Jones is a hands-on owner (maybe the most hands-on owner in the game), this sort of thing shouldn't surprise anyone; the owner and general manager often addresses the team after games. But this is the sort of thing that irks the more fervent Jerry-critics deeply.
It certainly seems that he's preaching to the choir in this case; that questions concerning the month of December began to surface en masse in early- to mid-November has ensured that even the newest additions to this Cowboys team are now well-versed in the team's recent late-year struggles.
"If you play the Eagles, the Giants, the Ravens and the Steelers, it's going to be a tough month no matter when you're doing it," Romo said, alluding to the December schedule in 2008. "Does that give you an excuse? No, because you've got to go beat them. At some point, you're going to have to beat them anyway to accomplish your goals. It's all about improving each time you're out there; if you do that consistently, December will take care of itself."