Another milestone in the offseason was passed yesterday when the NFL released the schedule for 2015. And once again, the news dominated the sports pages everywhere. We posted the Cowboys schedule yesterday and took a look at some of the storylines from a Cowboys' perspective. We generally look at the schedule for advantages and disadvantages. When is the bye? What's the stretch around Thanksgiving look like? Who do we open the season with and who do we end the season with, and where?
But in terms of watching the Cowboys and how exciting our games are, what does the rest of the sports media world think? When do they especially tune into a Cowboys game? From a brief and unscientific sample, we can conclude the Cowboys and the Eagles is the game everyone wants to see. The DeMarco Murray Bowl, Parts I and II. Some sample comments:
Dallas Cowboys at Philadelphia Eagles, Week 2 Sept. 20, 4:25 p.m. (Fox) -- Philadelphia Eagles at Dallas Cowboys, Week 9 Nov. 8, 8:30 p.m. (NBC) DeMarco Murray’s revenge? The NFL’s reigning offensive player of the year couldn’t come to a contract agreement with the Cowboys, so the Eagles happily signed him. Murray or not, games between these two rivals will go a long way in figuring out who wins the NFC East. - Yahoo Sports
Week 2: Dallas Cowboys at Philadelphia Eagles The NFC East has been in a state of constant flux for a while now, with each team taking a turn at the helm. When it finally looked like the Eagles had found their stride and were poised to take a dominant place in the division heading into this past season, the Cowboys remembered that they had some quality players and quickly dispelled that notion. Seeing which of these two teams comes out on top early should be plenty interesting. - SBNation.com
Philadelphia Eagles at Dallas Cowboys Sunday, Nov. 8, 8:30 p.m. Chip Kelly’s mad-scientist routine in remaking the Eagles’ roster after the coach was given final say over player moves included the addition of running back DeMarco Murray, last season’s NFL rushing leader for the Cowboys while running behind the talented Dallas offensive line. Murray makes his return while playing for a division rival. - The Washington Post
Can't deny it, there will be something a little extra in the air when we play the Eagles this year, beyond the intense dislike of each other by the fanbases. Seeing Murray's role in the outcome will be very interesting.
Next up, the return to Green Bay and Dez Bryant's catch/non-catch.
Cowboys at Packers Sunday, Dec. 13, 4:25 p.m. Wide receiver Dez Bryant and the Cowboys return to the scene of Bryant’s infamous non-catch during last season’s NFC playoffs. The NFL stubbornly declined to change the so-called Calvin Johnson rule that led to Bryant’s apparent catch being overturned via instant replay review that helped seal the Packers’ win. The league’s competition committee did tweak the wording of the rule, but the result was a counter-intuitive rule that is virtually unchanged. - The Washington Post
Dallas Cowboys at Green Bay Packers, Week 14 Dec. 13, 4:25 p.m. (Fox) Dez Bryant returns to the scene of the crime, when his fourth-down catch in the playoffs was overturned on replay review (ask Cowboys fans, and "crime" would be the kindest word they use for that play). That was a classic game, and the two teams are more than capable of presenting another fun matchup. - Yahoo Sports
Maybe this year, we won't need to rely on a late fourth quarter catch to win.
To finish off, the Cowboys games against the defending champs and the former defending champs are bankable commodities. The game against the Patriots is noted by those outside of the Cowboys' fanbase as a contest between who you hate more.
Patriots at Cowboys, Oct. 11, 4:05 p.m. The rest of the country will no doubt turn out in droves to "hate watch" this matchup of two of the NFL’s two most despised teams. Take your pick, America: Jerry Jones or Bill Belichick? - New York Post
Haters. On the other hand, the Seahawks game represents the respect the Cowboys are now getting. Seattle, Green Bay and Dallas are thought of as the NFC contenders.
Seattle Seahawks at Dallas Cowboys, Week 8 Nov. 1, 4:25 p.m. (Fox) These two teams turned in what might have been the best regular-season game in 2014, with the Cowboys upsetting the Seahawks in Seattle. This isn’t the same Cowboys team, without Murray, but it should still be a heck of a battle. - Yahoo Sports
Seahawks at Cowboys, Nov. 1, 4:25 p.m. These teams played arguably the most entertaining game of 2014, with Dallas pulling off a 30-23 road upset behind 115 yards from DeMarco Murray. With Murray now in Philadelphia, Seattle gets the chance to return the favor. New York Post