Perfect Timing for Cowboys Bye
The timing was perfect for the Cowboys to get a break and the break was more than just the bye week. The break also came in the fact that the Cowboys gained a lot of ground on several teams while they sat back in a hot tub or couch or recliner. As the Cowboys relaxed and healed, the first place Eagles got man-handled by the Packers, which put Dallas back into a first place tie in the NFC East. The Lions lost to the Cardinals to drop to the same 7-3 record as the Cowboys which could have meaning down the road if it comes to a wild card spot in the playoffs. New Orleans lost again to fall to 4-6 and way behind in any wild-card scenario. Seattle lost to St. Louis to go to 6-4 and the Giants dropped to 3-7 along with the Redskins to pretty much make it a two-team race in the division.
All of this happened without the Cowboys having to do anything. I think a well-timed bye is sometimes the best week a team can have. No risk of injury, Tony Romo gets healthier and the Cowboys get all kinds of up-side from other teams taking hits in the standings. The only team with a better record in the NFC at this point is the Cardinals, who just keep winning despite who’s under center. They are certainly the class of the conference up to this point, but they still have to face Seattle twice, Atlanta and San Francisco once each. Somebody has to lose those games and anyone who does is good news for the Cowboys. Winning your own games is the only thing that a team can really control, but for a team to just make the playoffs or get home field or go far into the post-season, they need good things to happen that are out of their control. The Cowboys are in a great position in both respects.
The fact that the Eagles gave up 53 points to the Packers has to be effecting their Philly heads; another plus for the Cowboys who have to face the Eagles twice still. When Philly is confident, they’re a very scary team, but start putting doubt into their heads (as in 53 points) and all kinds of wonderfully messed up thoughts start to fill their brains. The Cowboys come out of this bye with their next game against the horrible Giants, and they still have a bad Bears team and an even worse Redskins team after that. If those are the only wins the Cowboys get for the rest of the year they would finish 10-6. That’s if they drop both of the Philadelphia games and the game to the Colts. A 10-6 record would surely be better than most thought the Cowboys would have and probably be enough for a playoff spot. If a few other scenarios take place out of the Cowboys control, they could be looking at a first round home game – and then the fun really starts.
All of this might seem a little too optimistic but Sunday’s bye was perfectly timed for Dallas, and when a team has a good to great season, good fortune has to play a role – and the Cowboys are WAY over due for good fortune to look their way.