Reverse Barometer: Calling the Cowboys Schedule
Schedule release day in the National Football League is like Christmas morning for many. The only difference is that we know what’s in the presents; what order are we going to get to open them?
Actually, there really are two questions that matter this morning around the Cowboys’ 2015 schedule — How many wins are they going to get and will it be enough to repeat as champs in the NFC East?
The Reverse Barometer looks forward, game-by-game at the Cowboys’ 2015 schedule:
Sept. 13 vs. NY Giants (NBC): The Cowboys open the season in style, downing their division rivals, 31-17. Tony Romo has three touchdown passes while newcomer Adrian Peterson goes for 106 yards and a score on the ground. 1-0
Sept. 20 @ Philadelphia: DeMarco Murray punishes his former club to the tune of 138 all-purpose yards, including 103 rushing. Dallas scores points but cannot outscore Philly, as the Eagles win a shootout, 34-31. 1-1
Sept. 27 vs. Atlanta: Petersen goes off for 133 yards rushing and two scores, while Orlando Scandrick returns a pick for a touchdown in a 27-13 win. 2-1
Oct. 4 @ New Orleans (NBC): Drew Brees throws for 311 yards and three touchdowns, but it is not enough as Romo matches him with three scores of his own. Dallas wins via the kicking game, 30-27. 3-1
Oct. 11 vs. New England: Tom Brady and Romo face off in a game that breaks records for ESPN pre-game coverage throughout he week. Defense rules the day, as each team doesn’t allow much. Jason Witten catches the game-winning touchdown with under one minute remaining, 20-13. 4-1
Week 6: Bye week. Cowboys cover, even though Bye is favored by 3. (sorry, private joke).
Oct. 25 @ NY Giants: Division games are not to be taken lightly, but the Cowboys do and turn the ball over three times in a 24-22 loss on the road. Dallas looks sloppy while the Giants look sharp. Dallas sports radio thinks the sky is falling all day on Monday afterwards. 4-2
Nov. 1 vs. Seattle: Injuries take their toll on Dallas, as Peterson, Bryant, Lee and Scandrick are all sidelined. The Seahawks’ take care of business, winning 28-10. 4-3
Nov. 8 vs. Philadelphia (NBC): The Cowboys get some healthy bodies back and they are key, as Peterson goes off for 140 yards. DeMarco Murray misses the game due to a knee injury that has shelved him for six games. Sam Bradford can’t get the job done on his own. 26-13, Cowboys. 5-3
Nov. 15 at Tampa Bay: Tampa Bay’s Mike Evans puts on a clinic, catching 12 balls for 149 and three scores. But Dallas hangs right with the Bucs and comes back in the fourth quarter to win, 27-24. 6-3
Nov. 22 at Miami: Peterson runs for 127 yards and two touchdowns in a game the Cowboys never trail. Sean Lee has two interceptions. 24-13, Cowboys. 7-3
Nov. 26 vs. Carolina: Dallas turns the Panthers into a Thanksgiving feast, jumping out to a 17-0 lead and never looking back. Peterson has 109 yards rushing. 8-3
Dec. 7 @ Washington: Monday Night Football doesn’t do the Redskins any favors. Dallas gets three turnovers and is never threatened, as Bryant scores two touchdowns and catches nine balls. 27-14, Cowboys. 9-3
Dec. 13 @ Green Bay: Same song, different verse. The Cowboys simply have trouble winning in Lambeau. It’s not the Ice Bowl, but it’s a rather chilly 25 degrees at kickoff. Packers win, 24-16. 9-4
Dec. 19 vs. NY Jets: Cowboys bounce back with a solid win, 26-16, over the Jets. Peterson gains 105 yards again and rolls to two scores. 10-4
Dec. 27 at Buffalo: The Bills are in the playoff hunt and come focused and prepared. Dallas is overwhelmed with an emotional crowd and hungry players. Buffalo in the upset, 23-20. 10-5
Jan. 3 vs. Washington: Romo puts on a show, throwing for 387 yards and three touchdowns. The Redskins have no chance. 34-14, Cowboys. Final record: 11-5 and the NFC East title.