Dallas Cowboys and the NFL since 1996

I take an overall view of the team/season from year to year, but can still find room to follow trends over several years or decades. Post 96 season saw the continuing diminishing of a dynasty. The firing of Jimmy to be replaced with Switzer was not just a replacement of head coach, but removal of the strongest voice in the draft room.

The next 7 years saw a catastrophe (is there a stronger word?) in the draft room and trades that affected the draft room. Jerry figured winning championships was a fairly simple thing considering they did not plan ahead with contract length and needs in draft strategy, roster building, and coaching tree.

Parcells was hired to assist in building momentum towards the new stadium by bringing back a steadier product. He definitely missed having Belichick, but brought a more serious atmosphere tilted towards winning games. Better but not outstanding drafts. Much better with regards to player development from lower tier players. The record was up and down with Romo developing, old QB’s playing their last cards, and transition on the offensive side of the ball.

Wade Phillips inherited a very good group of defenders and a hungry Romo and better offensive talent. The Cowboys had a great season in 2007 but had a poor showing in the divisional round (their best chance since 1996 to get to the NFCCG). A very sloppy game by Dallas. Wade struggled to ever get the team to the same level and lost his job after a blowout a couple seasons later. Lots of poor drafts during his tenure. Garrett was awarded the job after Phillips and was mostly meh early on. Poor drafts until 2011 when the Cowboys finally decided that using premium picks on offensive lineman can help the win column and offensive production. When the Cowboys drafted Zach Martin instead of Johnny Manziel, there was clearly a change in the draft room.

The past decade has shown the most promise for the squad having a better draft organization (not the best but way better than many other squads). The team has adopted a draft and build the roster pretty much solely via the draft during this time. The Romo era gave way to the Dak era and the Cowboys have generally been a consistent productive team in the regular season. So consistent that my belief is the front office team is satisfied with the results and want to perpetuate the results with little to no regard to playoff success. That’s where I’m at. The front office team basically says without actually saying that they are fully satisfied with the results the past 2 seasons.

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