Dallas Cowboys: 2012 Week 17 NFL power rankings

Cowboys preview: Make-or-break stretch

August, 27, 2014
Aug 27
The end of the season has not been kind to the Dallas Cowboys in recent years. It's not been just a Jason Garrett problem, but the Cowboys lost three of their last four in 2013, their final two in 2012 and four of their last five in 2011 to finish 8-8 all three years. This year's late-season schedule is difficult -- five of the last seven away from home -- but the pivotal stretch will be early in the year to make sure the end of the year is relevant. Six of the Cowboys' first nine games are at AT&T Stadium, which has not provided the greatest of home-field advantages since opening. The Cowboys have a three-game homestand from Oct. 19-Nov. 2 against three NFC teams that they almost have to sweep to stay in contention in the division or help in the wild-card standings.

Complete Cowboys season preview.

Power Rankings: Cowboys eye rebound after drop

December, 24, 2012

Only one NFC East team left in the top 10 in this week's Power Rankings. Let's take a look at the way our division's teams stack up.

9. Washington Redskins (Last week: 8). They trade places in the rankings with the Colts, who are 10-5 and already in the playoffs while the Redskins are 9-6 and not in yet. I had them at 8 last week and kept them there (and the Colts at 9), but it's hard to argue with those who'd differ. I am one of three voters who rank them 8th. Ashley Fox has them 10th and John Clayton 12th.

14. Dallas Cowboys (10). Tied with the Texans for the week's biggest drop, the Cowboys could likely climb back into the top 10 with a win in Washington and the division title that would go with it, or finish the season in the middle of the pack where they've been all year and likely belong. I dropped them from 10 to 13 in my poll, not because I think their loss was especially bad but because I thought the Ravens, Bengals and Vikings all needed to move up. Jamison Hensley also has them 13. Clayton has them 14. Ashley and Mike Sando rank the Cowboys 15.

15. New York Giants (12). The Giants started the season at No. 3, ranked in the top 10 in 12 of the first 15 polls we did and peaked at No. 2 in Week Weeks 8 and 9. This right here is their lowest ranking of the season, and after consecutive losses by a combined score of 67-14 at the most critical time of the year, it's tough to argue. They were excellent at one point this season but now appear to be out of gas, and right now they're not a good team. John, Jamison and I have them at 15. Ashley puts them at 14 and Sando at 18.

29. Philadelphia Eagles (29). Not a lot left to say. They're trying, absolutely. They just aren't any good. Could they beat the Giants on Sunday? Sure. They almost always do. But they're going to settle in somewhere around this spot, and they've earned it. Sando and I put them 28, John and Jamison at 29 and Ashley at 30.

As always, I welcome your thoughts.