LANDOVER, MD - NOVEMBER 16: Tony Romo #9 of the Dallas Cowboys throws a pass against the Washington Redskins during the game on November 16, 2008 at FedEx Field in Landover, Maryland. (Photo by Jim McIsaac/Getty Images)
As someone who watched the Cowboys December collapse in person last year, I can tell you I cringed when I saw the schedule released Tuesday evening. Never mind Dallas hasn't had winning December since 1996. Or, that they allowed Texas Stadium to be closed in embarrassing fashion against the Ravens. Then again, there's the 44-6 beat down in Philly, in which the Cowboys had to win to get in the playoffs. I digress, here's a look at another brutal December stretch:
12/6 @ NY Giants: New York has been a tough place to play for the Cowboys. Granted last years thumping came at the hands of a Brad Johnson/Brooks Bollinger led offense. And, the Cowboys got the better of the "Fighting Eli's" at home. Less a Plaxico Burress, we'll have to see how this Giants offenses progresses throughout the season. Still, it's NY in December. This game is tall task.
12/13 San Diego Chargers: This game couldn't have timed out worse for the Cowboys. San Diego seems to find a way to turn into the best team in the league in December, when the Cowboys decide to collapse. Add to that a few homecomings (Norv Turner, Ladanian Tomlinson), and a team loaded with talent, and this home game is not a gimme.
12/19 @ New Orleans Saints: The Cowboys got the break here with a late December, warm climate indoor game. However, the Superdome is loud, and it's very possible the Saints are this years Arizona Cardinals. A team with a loaded offense, that finds a way to reach the Super Bowl, despite its pedestrian defense. There's the nice storyline: Sean Payton, a former Cowboys assistant championed Tony Romo coming out of Eastern Illinois. And, coming off two tough games in the previous weeks Dallas may press. But, the trip to the bayou sets up the nicest of the three-road games.
12/27 @ Washington Redskins: Our nation's capital was without question the high-point of the Cowboys 2008 season. It was the return of Tony Romo, and the team had to win to stay in playoff contention. They did, and at least for a couple of weeks following the victory it appeared the ship had been righted. The Redskins are decent/good. Yes, it's a division opponent late in December on the road, but the Cowboys have proven they can go to FedEx field and win when they have to. They should do the same in this game.