- Todd Archer, ESPN Staff Writer
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IRVING, Texas -- The NFL draft is coming up, but we break out Five Wonders on a Thursday to talk about the Dallas Cowboys' schedule.
Away we go:
I wonder just how seriously the Cowboys were considered to be the Seattle Seahawks’ opponent in Week 1. The Cowboys have five prime-time games despite their lack of playoff success in recent years and would have been a good draw. The Green Bay Packers got the nod, which will bring up the “Fail Mary” talk from the 2011 season when replacement refs were used early in the season. The Cowboys opened the 2012 season at MetLife Stadium after the New York Giants won the Super Bowl the previous season. The Cowboys won that game, too. Had the Cowboys been the pick this year you can bet the 2006 wild-card game would have been front and center with NBC showing a lot of highlights of Tony Romo’s bobbled snap.
I wonder if the Cowboys leave for London on Nov. 3, the day after they play the Arizona Cardinals. It would give them extra time to get acclimated to the time change after a long flight to get ready to play the Jacksonville Jaguars. Late last year I wondered if the Cowboys would play an East Coast game against the Giants, Philadelphia Eagles or Washington Redskins and left the next day for London. That would have been a long time on the road, so this possible schedule would seem to work better.
I wonder if the networks agree with Cowboys owner Jerry Jones when he mentioned how good of a show Dallas provided after their loss last year to the Packers. Well, not really. I know they agree with Jones on that. And that’s why the Cowboys have the maximum amount of prime-time games and could find themselves playing in prime time a sixth time thanks to the flex scheduling later in the year. The Cowboys will be playing night games on NBC (three times), CBS/NFL Network (once) and ESPN (once). I wonder if the networks would petition for more Cowboys games if the club could actually have, you know, actual playoff success, too.
I wonder what kind of record the Cowboys need to have in the first half of the season to make a playoff run in the second half. They are on the road in four of the final six games of the year. Three of their first five games are at AT&T Stadium and they have a three-game homestand in Weeks 7-9. That would appear to be the must-win territory to build up a cushion down the stretch.
I wonder if the Cowboys believe in climate change. Three of their four games in December might have them in coooooooold temperatures. We know it will be cold in Chicago for the Dec. 4 meeting against the Bears at Soldier Field. It was a ridiculous 8 degrees with a minus-9 wind chill when these teams met on Dec. 9, 2013, in what turned out to be a 45-28 Chicago win. Ten days later, the Cowboys play at Philadelphia. In the Dec. 8, 2013, game at Lincoln Financial Field, the Eagles beat the Detroit Lions in a blizzard. The Cowboys close the year Dec. 28 in Washington. It might be warm, but it might be coooooooold, too. And Redskins fans might want to hope for snow or ice so they can throw it at the Cowboys as they go off the field.