In the three seasons before last season, the Dallas Cowboys were the very definition of mediocre. Three straight 8-8 seasons. Three straight Week 17 win-and-in games, and three losses in those games--to the Giants in 2011, the Redskins in 2012 and the Eagles in 2013.
But through all that mediocrity, the interest in the Cowboys remained among the most visible teams in the NFL.
So what’s the reason for this--for the interest in the Cowboys remaining high through good seasons and bad?
According to Bob Costas, the host of NBC’s Football Night in America, it’s a combination of tradition--people either love or love to hate the Cowboys, and both of those camps will watch the games--and the presence of colorful characters like, say, our esteemed owner and general manager.
Costas explained his thinking on Monday night at the University of Texas at Arlington, where he was a special guest as part of the Maverick Speaker Series.
“The Cowboys are like the Yankees, they’re like Duke, they’re like Notre Dame,” Costas said. “Many, many people love them. Some love to root against them, but people are always interested in them. And even when the Cowboys have had relatively mediocre seasons, 8-8 seasons, they always have compelling characters, bigger-than-life characters. Jerry Jones is not a wallflower.”