It wasn't even a month ago, but after an embarrassing 34-18 loss to the Chicago Bears on Monday, the Cowboys find themselves having to chase the season in the same way they had to last year.
With the Cowboys Stadium roof open under a clear night, Tony Romo was intercepted five times and had two of those picks returned for touchdowns.
Almost a year ago to the day, the Cowboys found themselves chasing the season after a 34-30 loss to Detroit and never recovered, finishing 8-8 and missing the playoffs. The Cowboys blew a 27-3 lead that day and Romo had two interceptions returned for touchdowns by the Lions to kick-start Detroit's comeback.
And like that Lions game, Monday's loss leads into the Cowboys' bye week.
"You don't need this as a wake-up," tight end Jason Witten said. "We knew what this game meant."
A win meant 3-1, progress, a potential wild-card tiebreaker down the road and a sense of accomplishment through the first quarter of the season. A loss means 2-2, inconsistency, the loss of a wild-card tiebreaker down the road and a sense of befuddlement with a first-team offense that has totaled three touchdowns in the last three games.
Now the Cowboys have to wait until Oct. 14 to play again, and they will have only one day of practice this week thanks to NFL rules. After Wednesday's workout, they will be off from Thursday to Sunday.