Cowboys News App [Android]

2 huge intangibles the Cowboys must address in 2023

We've gone through 11 different areas that need attention if the Cowboys want to make it back to the . From the Front Office in the first post (also see posts #2, #3, #4, #5, #6, #7, #8, #9, #10) to the 11th, Special Teams.

We've noted the needs and made suggestions on how to fill them. Some the have already done. Others they've handled differently with a few to be determined. 

But there remains two areas of concern. These are the , things that aren't fixed simply by changing the of the roster. We'll look at both of them now.


I look at the of the 21st Century and this one gif image keeps coming to mind:

This applies to the entire organization, front the to staff and on down to then players. Over 20 years of soft litter the first two-plus decades.

Whenever the needed to get off the field, whenever the game was on the line, the Cowboys were too soft. When a clutch catch needed to be made, a first down gained, or the clock run out, the Cowboys were too soft.

The coaches needed to harden these teams. They didn't. The front office needed to add steel to the organization. The added aluminum instead.

This is how you go 27 seasons in a row without making it back to the Championship game and the Super Bowl. During that time the team has won just five playoff games, all in the round.

They've lost in the Wild Card round five times. They've lost all seven games they've played in the since winning . That's 5-12 in the since 1996.


Fair or not, the expectation for the Cowboys is much higher. An expectation set by and Tex Schramm between 1960 and 1989 and continued by through the team's last Super Bowl win.

We'll repeat, Barry Switzer was the for that final championship, but that was Jimmy's team. Johnson never led an unprepared football team onto the field.

Report: Former Cowboys Head Coach Jimmy Johnson Elected to the Hall of Fame

During the first 37 years of the franchise's existence the Cowboys played in eight Super Bowls and won five of them. They went 9-7 in the NFC Conference Championship games, 15-6 in the Divisional rounds and 3-1 in Wild Card games.

That's 32-17 overall and includes missing the playoffs between 1960-1965. That's not soft at all. 

So, how do we harden the Cowboys? It starts where this entire series of posts began. In the Front Office at .


In a recent , stated that the Cowboys were going to keep approaching the off season as they always have. At least since he assumed full control over player personnel. Namely, try to retain their own and not pursue any big names in the market.

He also knocked the moves the Rams and Eagles recently made to reach the Super Bowl. We might point out that the Rams won the Super Bowl and the Eagles came pretty close themselves this year.

We also look at the big swing the 49ers made. They added Christian McCaffery after a dismal start. They rode him to the game after beating the Cowboys again in the Divisional round.

The 49ers came within a heathy of making the Super Bowl themselves. But they wouldn't have gotten that close without taking a big swing.

All three teams did so by making big moves to improve their roster. The Chiefs won their second Super Bowl in four years despite trading away one of their biggest offensive weapons. The Buccaneers signed and won a Super Bowl in 2021.

Dallas needs to stop mocking and start copying. Cut ties with players if it means being able to make room for players that can get you to the big game.

2020 NFL Trade Deadline: Will Dallas Cowboys be Buyers or Sellers?
Sep 25, 2017; Glendale, AZ, USA; Dallas Cowboys executive vice president (right) reacts alongside his father, owner Jerry Jones prior to the game against the at University of Phoenix Stadium. Mandatory Credit: Mark J. Rebilas- Sports

The Cowboys' Way has led to nearly three decades of mediocrity. The Jones family may be happy with never getting past the Divisional round, when they actually make the playoffs, but the fan base isn't.

Can anyone outside The Star say they wouldn't take a Super Bowl win this year if it meant having to rebuild for a couple of years afterward? I'd take an 8-9 or even a 7-10 season for two years if it followed a Super Bowl win. Even at least a Super Bowl appearance would be worth that.

The biggest intangible going into 2023 and beyond?

Getting the Front Office to change its mindset. The Cowboys' Way of the last 27 years just isn't cutting it.

Richard Paolinelli
Richard Paolinelli
Richard has covered sports at all levels - from local, prep, college, and professional - since 1984. He has been a fan of the Dallas Cowboys since 1969. Since retiring as a full-time sports writer in 2013, he has written and published several novels, two dozen short stories and two sports non-fiction books.

COntinue Reading


Notify of

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.

Newest Most Voted
Inline Feedbacks
View all comments

> Join our team...

-- COWBOYS ANDROID APP --Free Dallas Cowboys News App for Android