The 2019 Cowboys are one of the most disappointing, underachieving groups in recent memory.
Those same Cowboys will more than likely host a playoff game next month.
Three quarters of the way into the 2019 season, both of these statements are very true about this version of the Cowboys. Following a blowout home loss to the now 9-3 Buffalo Bills, the Cowboys are officially reeling. Two straight losses have brought Dallas back down to .500, and have allowed the also-struggling Philadelphia Eagles a clear path to the playoffs.
For a team that entered 2019 as a Super Bowl contender, these Cowboys have been wildly disappointing. And this is true regardless of how these final four games go.
In recent years, head coach Jason Garrett has skated by some criticisms due to the team’s success in the division. Winning the NFC East three of the last five years, and being in the de-facto NFC East title game the three seasons previous to this run, Dallas has arguably been the class of their division each year under Garrett.
This is objectively good, no question about it. If the goal every year is to win the Super Bowl, then winning your division is the likely first step towards that goal.
What’s also true, however, is that the NFC East is the worst division in the conference. While the Eagles have been a perennial playoff team as of late, the bottom of this division has been an absolute joke.
And while credit should be given to the Cowboys for defeating the teams they “should” beat, being the best of bad options isn’t good enough.
Winning bad divisions is fine, the New England Patriots do it every year. But the Patriots also win playoff games year in and year out. The Patriots live in their conference title game. The Cowboys live with divisional round losses.
I’m not saying that because the Cowboys aren’t comparable to the greatest dynasty we’ve ever seen, Jason Garrett should be fired. But, winning a bad division is just not good enough.
Being the best of the worst group in football is not good enough.