DALLAS COWBOYS LOOKING LIKE an 8-8 TEAM THIS YEAR
The cowpokes won't be winning many rodeos this year. Here's why:
1) Dallas plays a challenging schedule this year with a whopping ten games against head coaches with Super Bowl experience, plus two games against New York's Joe Judge who has won Super Bowl rings as an assistant coach with New England.
2) Dallas opens on the road at a city where they have never won. Their first nine opponents are all projected to field better teams this year than last. Dallas has only one easy game on their schedule, and that isn't until Week Fourteen at Cincinnati. By that time rookie quarterback Joe Burrow will have almost an entire season's experience under his belt.
3) Dallas took advantage of an easy division schedule last year, with games vs. Eli Manning, Case Keenum, rookie Daniel Jones, rookie Dwayne Haskins, and head coaches Pat Shurmur and Jay Gruden, and interim head coach Bill Callahan. That won't be the case this year. Jones and Haskins will both show improvement in their sophomore year and the coaching staffs of both teams are greatly improved.
4) Dallas lost a ton of talent this past year. Defensive coordinator Rod Marinelli is gone, and also Robert Quinn, Maliek Collins, Travis Frederick, Jeff Heath, Byron Jones, Jason Witten, and more.
5) Dak Prescott sat out the offseason program in a contract dispute. He will enter the season either disgruntled over not having a new contract, or disgruntled over the team taking too long to give him a new contract. In either case, he will not be happy and is likely to play half-heartedly.
6) Kellen Moore is a second year offensive coordinator and will be going up against some of the best defensive minds in the league. Those are chess matches he is not likely to win.