The number 4 has taken a special importance for the Cowboys over the last couple of seasons.
Last year, it was their total number of wins. The 2015 Cowboys were plain bad, finishing with that infamous 4-12 record and facing tremendous quarterback problems.
This year, rookie quarterback sensation Dak Prescott wears it. The man who has solved any of those quarterback woes. The man who has outdone himself week after week, making everyone wonder just how he lasted until the 4th round.
As of November 22nd, 2016, the number 4 means even more than expected. It is the Cowboys magic number to clinching the NFC East.
That’s right, we can already start talking about their magic number. This year has been absolutely insane.
What’s a magic number, you ask?
Simply put, it is the combination of Cowboys wins and New York Giants losses which are required for another NFC East crown. The Giants currently sit at 7-3, 2 games behind Dallas, and will face the Cowboys on Sunday Night football in just a few weeks. Before that meeting, the Giants face the winless Cleveland Browns, and the ever-dangerous Pittsburgh Steelers.
Staff writer Jess Haynie will get into the nuts and bolts of the entire playoff picture later this week, but as it stands right now that December 11th battle could ultimately decide the division. However, it is still highly likely the Cowboys could win the division even if they end up being swept by the second place Giants.
No matter how they get there, the Cowboys can just about guarantee themselves as division champs if they finish the season 4-2. I know, 2 losses seems absurd right now based on how they are playing, but at some point there will be another loss. Right? Maybe not.
Washington (6-3-1) also poses a threat to the Cowboys division title hopes, but will need to defeat the Cowboys this Thursday to keep those aspirations realistic. If they were to lose Thursday, it would be nearly impossible for Washington to pass the Cowboys with 4 losses.
Of course, the year the Cowboys start off 9-1 is the one year the rest of the NFC East decides not to be totally mediocre. Regardless, the Cowboys have a chance to run away with this thing, starting with a potentially huge win on Thanksgiving.