The 2019 season for the Dallas Cowboys was a disappointment to say the least. They failed to make the playoffs after going 8-8 yet again in the regular season despite leading their offense leading the league in yards per game. The cherry-on-top for this failure of a season was a 9-17 loss at Philadelphia in week 16 which gave the Eagles the lead in the division.
Thankfully, all of that is behind us now, and with a batch of new arrivals that includes head coach Mike McCarthy coming to join the team, Cowboys fans are once again feeling optimistic about the upcoming season. With sports news coming in at a trickle, one can’t help but speculate how this season might go for Dak Prescott and company.
Week 1: Cowboys @ Los Angeles Rams (Sunday Night Football)
Despite their struggles over the past decade or so, the Cowboys are still America’s team, and for that reason they will be under the brightest of lights in week one as they face Jared Goff and the Rams, who will be unveiling their nearly $5 billion stadium to the public in this game.
The Rams will be amped to show out in front of their home crowd against the most visible franchise in the league, but unfortunately for them they seem to be trending in the wrong direction. After their appearance in Super Bowl 53 in which they lost to Tom Brady and the Patriots, they failed to make the playoffs the following year. This is not just a debut for the Rams new stadium, however, it is also Mike McCarthy’s debut as the Cowboys head coach. Expect McCarthy to spoil the Rams’ housewarming party and get off to a hot start.
Prediction: Dallas wins 27-17
Week 2: Atlanta Falcons @ Dallas Cowboys
Coming off of a week one win against the Rams, Dallas returns home to face Matt Ryan and the Falcons. Like the Rams, the Falcons are also trending in the wrong direction after a Super Bowl loss to the Patriots a few years back.
While Julio Jones and Calvin Ridley might give the secondary some headaches, Atlanta’s defense (which ranked in the bottom half in the league last season) will not be able to hold up against the likes of Amari Cooper, Ezekiel Elliot, Michael Gallup, and CeeDee Lamb for four quarters. Sooner or later, the floodgates will burst and Dallas will put up some serious points against the Falcons, securing their second victory of the season in as many weeks.
Prediction: Dallas wins 35-21
Week 3: Dallas Cowboys @ Seattle Seahawks
This is where things start to get a little tricky. Dallas and Seattle have had some fantastic matchups over the last few seasons, with Seattle getting the better of Dallas more often than not. This game being at Seattle is a huge disadvantage for Dallas, who will still be trying to establish their identity under new head coach Mike McCarthy at this point in the season. To beat a quarterback like Russell Wilson, the Cowboys will have to play a near-perfect game, which they will not.
Prediction: Dallas loses 27-20
Week 4: Cleveland Browns @ Dallas Cowboys
Time to see if yet another new Browns head coach can make something out of their team. It shouldn’t be too hard for Kevin Stefanski though, as the Browns are one of the most talented teams on paper in the league.
The Browns will be a very dangerous team next season, but their success will be determined by their young quarterback, Baker Mayfield. Mayfield is prone to spurts of greatness, but he is also often very careless with the ball and turnovers are quite common for him. The X-factor in this game will without a doubt be the Cleveland quarterback, who will have to score a lot of points to keep up with Dallas’ high-powered offense. In the end though, Mayfield’s efforts will not be enough to pull the Browns to victory.
Prediction: Dallas wins 33-21
Week 5: New York Giants @ Dallas Cowboys
This will be quite an interesting matchup and also a revenge game for the Giants new offensive coordinator Jason Garrett. He will have Daniel Jones and company amped to play his former team on their home field. Unfortunately for the Giants… Jason Garrett is their offensive coordinator. He will have no tricks Dallas hasn’t seen before and will not be able to pull any rabbit out of his hat that would propel the Giants’ lackluster roster to victory. To put it in more simple terms, the talent on the Cowboys roster will overwhelm New York’s and Mike McCarthy will be looking to put an exclamation point in his first divisional matchup as a head coach.
Prediction: Dallas wins 42-14
Week 6: Arizona Cardinals @ Dallas Cowboys (Monday Night Football)
Dallas goes back to primetime football in week six, this time against the likes of Kyler Murray and DeAndre Hopkins. Unlike the Rams and Falcons, the Cardinals are trending upwards. Kyler Murray was the offensive rookie of the year last season, and Kliff Kingsbury seems to be getting his feet under him as an NFL coach.
While Arizona’s offense might trouble the Cowboys, their defense will not. The Cardinal’s defense ranked 28th overall in the league last year, and Dallas has the firepower on offense to take advantage of it. Expect another big offensive night from America’s Team.
Prediction: Dallas wins 30-24
Week 7: Dallas Cowboys @ Washington Redskins
After a three week stint at home, Dallas will meet divisional rival Washington at FedEx Field in week seven. If there is one part of Washington’s team that should make Cowboys fans nervous, it is their defensive line. With the addition of Chase Young in this year’s NFL draft, the Redskins have five first round picks along their defensive line (Chase Young, Jonathan Allen, Ryan Kerrigan, Da’Ron Payne, and Montez Sweat). Luckily for Dallas, their offensive line has been the team’s strongest aspect over the past few seasons. Other than Dak Prescott being hit a few times this game, there shouldn’t be too much cause for concern among Cowboys fans regarding this game.
Prediction: Dallas wins 24-14
Week 8: Dallas Cowboys @ Philadelphia Eagles (Sunday Night Football)
Despite all of the rumors surrounding Carson Wentz saying that he is a subpar leader, he is without a doubt a superstar quarterback (injury concerns aside). The fact that Wentz was able to beat Dallas last year with the crop of wide receivers they had is a testament to Wentz’s abilities. Although I do not see Philadelphia’s first round pick Jalen Reagor becoming a household name anytime soon, he will be a welcome presence for Wentz, who was throwing to ex-college quarterbacks last season. I expect these two teams to split their series this season, and the Philadelphia crowd will propel their Eagles to victory in the first contest between the two teams.
Prediction: Dallas loses 28-24
Week 9: Pittsburgh Steelers @ Dallas Cowboys
The classic rivalry will be renewed for the first time since 2016, when Dallas triumphed 35-30. The Steelers have a defense that will keep offensive coordinator Kellen Moore tossing and turning at night, but it will not be enough for Pittsburgh to triumph.
The Steelers do have some offensive weapons that could cause problems in JuJu Smith-Schuster and James Conner, but those two players alone will not be able to win the game all by themselves. Pittsburgh and Dallas have pretty similar teams, but the Cowboys have a more talented roster and that is what will win them the day in week nine.
Prediction: Dallas wins 30-21
Week 10: Bye Week
Week 11: Dallas Cowboys @ Minnesota Vikings
In 2019, the Cowboys had a very frustrating loss to Minnesota that left a lot of fans shaking their heads. If you recall, Dak Prescott was having one of his better games when head coach Jason Garrett decided to “establish the run” on the final drive of the game. Garrett tried to force Ezekiel Elliott on the Vikings, whose run defense was like a brick wall that game. Dallas, of course, ended up losing the game.
With Garrett gone, though, hopefully this result will not be repeated. Let’s hope McCarthy lets Prescott run wild against Minnesota this time.
Prediction: Cowboys win 28-27
Week 12: Washington Redskins @ Dallas Cowboys (Thanksgiving Day)
Please, let’s try and not think about what happened last season against the Bills. While Washington and Dallas usually play each other pretty closely, I expect this season to be different. Mike McCarthy will know by this point that losing on Thanksgiving day is unacceptable for a Cowboys head coach. And with a substandard Washington team on the slate, McCarthy will do everything in his power to put on a show for the home crowd on the national day of thanks.
Prediction: Dallas wins 35-17
Week 13: Dallas Cowboys @ Baltimore Ravens
Oh boy, if there is a single game that I could pick this season that makes me the most nervous, it would have to be this one. Lamar Jackson is coming off of an MVP season and the Ravens only got better in the offseason. Their unique style of play will have the Dallas defense reeling throughout the game. Dallas’ offense might be able to keep them in the game for three out of the four quarters, but Lamar and company will be too much to handle.
Prediction: Dallas loses 31-21
Week 14: Dallas Cowboys @ Cincinnati Bengals
First overall pick Joe Burrow might very well develop into a star in this league, but for the time being he is a rookie quarterback with little-to-no talent surrounding him on his team. Burrow will be going from arguably one of the most talented college football teams of all time to the NFL team with the least amount of talent on it. It will be interesting to see how he adjusts to the league after such a lauded senior year of college. For the time being, though, the Bengals will struggle and the Cowboys will come out of this game with an easy win.
Prediction: Dallas wins 33-13
Week 15: San Francisco 49ers @ Dallas Cowboys (Sunday Night Football)
After enjoying a lot of success all season, the Dallas offense will meet quite possibly the most stingy defense in the league in week 15. The 49ers were in position to win the Super Bowl last season and will be just as tough to play against this year. Mike Shanahan is an elite head coach and will be able to gameplan just right against Dallas. Defensive end Joey Bosa will become quite acquainted with Dak Prescott in this contest and the 49ers will come out on top.
Prediction: Dallas loses 24-13
Week 16: Philadelphia Eagles @ Dallas Cowboys
The Cowboys will be in the playoff race at this point, looking to secure their spot in the postseason by knocking off their hated rival. In a game that will be described as the polar opposite to last season’s embarrassment in week 16, Dallas’ offense will catch fire and really try to lay it on Philadelphia. Also, even though Carson Wentz is mega-talented at the quarterback position, he has struggled against teams with a winning record as of late. The Cowboys will clinch a playoff berth and embarrass their divisional rival all in one game.
Prediction: Dallas wins 35-17
Week 17: Dallas Cowboys @ New York Giants
With the division wrapped up with a little bow around it, Dallas will not have a need to play their starters for much of this game. Unless of course if they are in position to secure the number one seed, which they probably will not be in.
Joe Judge and Jason Garrett will get to take their frustrations out on Andy Dalton and the rest of the Dallas backups, providing revenge (however so slight) for Jason Garrent as he faces his former team for the second time.
Prediction: Dallas loses 21-14
Dallas will be in prime position to win their division this year. There might be some bumps along the way and some growing pains in McCarthy’s first season as head coach, but offense is primed to put up some big numbers this year and the defense was improved in the offseason. Of course, winning 11 games in the regular season will not be enough to satisfy most Cowboys fans, who have been deprived of a Super Bowl for over two decades. It remains to be seen if this team has what it takes to win the big one, I guess we’ll find out soon enough though.
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