When the clock struck midnight last Saturday we all celebrated what we hope to be a prosperous New Year in 2017.
While the Dallas Cowboys are still looking to use the first month and change to cap off a project they began way back in 2016, some details concerning next season’s iteration of the Dallas Cowboys became crystal-clear known when the 2016 NFL Regular Season came to a close Sunday night.
The 2017 Dallas Cowboys opponents, both home and away, are now fully-known.
2017 #DallasCowboys Opponents: Home: LA, SEA, KC, SD, GB, NYG, WASH, PHI. Away: ARI, SF, DEN, OAK, ATL, NYG, WASH, PHI.
How Do We Know Who We’re Playing And Where?
NFL schedules are an easy thing to understand once you understand them – shocking, I know. This is obviously applicable to all teams, but for the purposes of understanding how it works we’ll use the Cowboys.
Dallas plays in the NFC East, so their division foes account for six of their 16 games (three home and three away). Every year they rotate divisions that they play from both conferences. In 2016 the Cowboys played both the NFC North and AFC North, in 2017 they have the NFC West and AFC West. The locations of these alternate as well. If you remember in 2013, last time we played the AFC West, we hosted Denver and Oakland… where we travel next season.
That all allots for 14/16 games; where do the other two come from? The Cowboys won the NFC East in 2016, finishing in 1st place. As they are already playing the entire NFC West in 2017, they play the teams that finished in the same place as them from the other two NFC divisions. This is how we know that we play the Green Bay Packers and Atlanta Falcons.
What Immediate Takeaways Do We Have?
In terms of home games, there’s two things that stick out to me. First of all this will be the first time that the Cowboys host the Los Angeles Rams in AT&T Stadium, but it will also be the first trip that the Kansas City Chiefs take to the facility that opened in 2009.
There are three really interesting things when considering the road games for the 2017 Cowboys:
- Dallas will travel to Denver. It’s always fascinating to see how that altitude influences games.
- The Cowboys will travel to Oakland, will it be for the last time? There’s much speculation that the Raiders could be moving, and as the Cowboys won’t travel to play the Raiders again until 2025, one would have to wonder where that game will be taking place.
- Super Bowl LIII will be played in the new home of the Atlanta Falcons – hopefully the Cowboys are in it – but the Cowboys will get to see what the stadium is all about in its first season. When the Cowboys visit Atlanta they’ll be doing so in the Falcons’ brand new stadium.