As we gear up for training camp and the start of the 2008 season, I decided to take one last look back to 2007. We approached last season with a sense of cautious optimism that the Cowboys could improve upon the up and down season of 2006. Wade Phillips was the new sheriff in town who brought a much different attitude to an extremely talented team but it was unknown if his style would translate to a successful campaign. Tony Romo was in his first full year as the Cowboys' starting quarterback and it was up in the air which Romo would show up; the magical leader of October and November, or the inexperienced and mistake-prone quarterback of December. Would the defense be able to rebound from an abysmal last month of the season as they learned a much more aggressive system under Wade Phillips?
While the season eventually ended in bitter disappointment no one could have predicted the success the Cowboys would go on to have during 2007 regular season. Franchise records were shattered by Tony Romo and Terrell Owens while DeMarcus Ware and Terence Newman established themselves as some of the best at their positions. The Cowboys finished the year with a record of 13-3, one of the best regular seasons in the history of the Dallas Cowboys. Throughout the year we were witness to countless incredible plays and feats of athleticism, perseverance through adversity and a resolve to do whatever it takes to win.
In the next few weeks leading up to training camp, Blogging The Boys will countdown the top moments of the 2007 season. There were many to choose from and it was not an easy task to narrow it down to just ten. With a season like the Cowboys had last year I could just have easily made a top 50 list, but we just don't have the kind of time.We start the countdown at number ten.
#10: Brett Favre's final game at Texas Stadium.
Week 13: November 29, 2007
Green Bay Packers @ Dallas Cowboys
This was the NFC game of the year as the top two teams in the conference squared off against each other for the upper hand in the rights to home field advantage in the playoffs. The storylines surrounding the game were endless: Tony Romo going up against his childhood idol Brett Favre, the questions on whether the Cowboys defense would be able to contain the high flying Packers offense, and whether Brett Favre would be able to shed his Texas Stadium demons. Favre had never won against the Cowboys on their home field but it was thought that he would be able to get past that in the middle of one of the best seasons of his great career.
Out of the gate the Cowboys' defense was intent on making Favre uncomfortable and it paid off tremendously. Whether it was the relentless pressure brought on by DeMarcus Ware and endless blitzes or Favre having flashback of his previous failures in Dallas, the Packers offense never got going against the Cowboys. The Cowboys played near perfect defense against the spread formations of the Packers and showed incredible discipline on a flea flicker early in the second quarter. Favre never had time to get comfortable in the pocket and was intercepted twice, both of which quickly turned into touchdown passes by Tony Romo. The only hiccup came when the Packers' Ryan Grant exploded for a 62 yard touchdown run that tied the score at 10. The touchdown was the first play after DeMarcus Ware was wrongly flagged for being offsides on third and six, a play that resulted in a hurried incomplete pass.
Favre was knocked out of the game after his second interception when Nate Jones' helmet collided with Favre's elbow. He finished the game just 5 of 16 for 56 yards, zero touchdowns and two interceptions. When Favre left the Cowboys were winning 27-10 with ten minutes left in the first half. Tony Romo had already thrown three touchdowns. The Cowboys would go on to win the game and would eventually earn home field advantage in the playoffs.