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Record predictions for the 2021 Dallas Cowboys season

A look at how the Cowboys might do in 2021.

NFL: Dallas Cowboys at New York Giants Brad Penner-USA TODAY Sports

We are finally within a week of opening night. Soon Dak Prescott will lead the team into the home of the defending Super Bowl Champion Tampa Bay Buccaneers and look to take home a W and start the season off 1-0.

2021 could be a special year for the Dallas Cowboys and with every thing out in front of them and game one fast approaching. The Cowboys finished last year 6-10 and saw their season crumble as Prescott was carted off the field in early October. However, it’s a new season, Dak is healthy, and the defense has some fresh new faces to help turn the unit around.

What will 2021 bring the Cowboys? We asked our BTB front-pager writers to come up with their own Cowboys record prediction for the upcoming regular season. Let us know which prediction you think has the best chance to come true, and tell us what you think their record will be this season in the comments section below.

BTB’s season predictions:

Tony Catalina - 13-4

I am bought in to this team and this quarterback. I am confident enough in Dan Quinn turning this defense around enough to be a middle of the pack defense that should be enough to compliment this prolific offensive attack. Call me optimistic, unrealistic, and say I’m too positive all you want, that’s fine with me. Yes, I could I see the Cowboys dropping a game here and there they should’ve won. Of course, it happens every year. However, as I go through the schedule there are some very winnable stretches to be had in this year. I am not afraid of the Tampa Bay Buccaneers and I think the Cowboys could surprise some people. However, besides that game, weeks 2-6 are winnable and the Cowboys could very well see themselves head into the bye week 5-1. Health will be important as always, but if they are able to manage that aspect I could see the Cowboys running away with the division and could threaten deep into the playoffs.

RJ Ochoa - 11-6

Ultimately this team should easily win the NFC East. That may seem like overconfidence, but given the state of the division it should easily belong to Dallas. They get to play quarterbacks like Sam Darnold, Teddy Bridgewater, Jameis Winston, Ryan Fitzpatrick, Daniel Jones, and Jalen Hurts which should help this new-look defense be better. It’s bold to assume that the offense will just take care of itself, but at this point it has to. Let’s get to the playoffs.

Tom Ryle - 12-5

I may be guzzling far too much Kool Aid, but I think the Cowboys’ offense will be what we think they are, and the defense will be good enough to not force them to score 40 points a game to win. They have two real winners in rookies Micah Parsons and Osa Odighizuwa, and free agents Keanu Neal and Demontae Kazee seem to have locked down starting jobs. All look to be upgrades over what they had last season. The only thing that will slow the offense is what killed it last year, and we are not going to say any more about that other than hoping it is not nearly as bad this season. I am not worried about the rust factor for Dak Prescott. At most, it may take him some of the first game to find his groove, and the extensive time in the Dakyard with his receivers should shorten the adjustment. Many of the other new players seem to have clear roles, and I have a lot of faith in what Dan Quinn and his assistants are doing. We have been disappointed before, but this does feel different in Mike McCarthy’s sophomore season.

David Howman - 11-6

The Cowboys have one of the easier schedules this year by most metrics, but their hardest games are really, really hard. They face both of last year’s Super Bowl teams, both on the road, and have four of their six divisional games right at the end of the year.

Still, this is a team that feels destined for a big improvement from last year. We know what Kellen Moore can do with a healthy Dak Prescott, and the basic law of regression (or in this case progression) towards the mean suggests that the defense won’t be a liability. That’s a combination that should be able to win the division without too much trouble, although the Cowboys always find a way to keep things interesting.

Brian Martin - 12-5

Call it the optimist in me or wishful thinking, but I believe the Dallas Cowboys are going to be a tough team to beat in 2021. Dak Prescott and Company have the ability/talent to be one the most feared and potent offenses in the league this season if they can stay healthy. There’s not a single opponent on their schedule they shouldn’t be able to match point for point with. But, how many wins and losses they are able to accumulate will hinge on how much more improved the defense will be under the tutelage of Dan Quinn. If he can turn them into at least a middle-of-the-road unit, Dallas should enjoy a deep playoff run and perhaps a Super Bowl appearance this year.

Aidan Davis - 10-7

This season, similar to the past ten the Cowboys have played, is filled with question marks. Whether it be the defense, the level of coaching that Mike McCarthy is capable of providing, the impact that Dan Quinn will have, or the return of a healthy Dak Prescott, it is difficult to get a read on this team. Barring injury, this is once again a very talented roster. But transforming talent into wins has been the Cowboys’ biggest problem for years now. However, with another year under McCarthy I enter the season cautiously optimistic. The season will likely be filled with unexpected wins and unfathomable losses. If the Cowboys beat the Buccaneers in week one and lose to the Panthers in week four, I wouldn’t be entirely surprised. Thus, ten wins is less of a game-by-game prediction, and more of a projection of how far this offense can carry the team. Behind the Comeback Player of the Year, I expect the Cowboys to play the Cardinals in week 17 up one game on the Football Team with the tie-breaker. After winning against Kyler Murray, Dallas can rest their starters against the Eagles in week 18 and prepare for the postseason.

Terence Watson - 12-5

I have the Cowboys going 12-5 this season, thanks in part to the return of their star quarterback Dak Prescott. His presence on the field for the offense will add a new dimension lost for this team last year, the real threat of a passing game. That in turn will boost the production from running backs Ezekiel Elliott and Tony Pollard who should start seeing less defenders in the box to stop the run. But the main reason I have this team going 12-5 is based on how hopeful I am that this defense will rebound. They were the biggest reason for this team’s 6-10 record last season, inability to stop anyone when it counted. The man who will lead this turn around, Dan Quinn, has brought a swagger back to this defense and that along with a more simplistic defensive scheme should make this defense who has all the talent you could want, live up to the expectations of we Cowboys faithful.

Matt Holleran - 11-6

I think it’s clear the Cowboys are the best team in the NFC East. Dallas has the best quarterback by a wide margin, and that’s a huge deal in today’s NFL. The Cowboys’ offense has a chance to be the best in football, and if Dak Prescott and the offensive line are able to stay healthy I think they will be. Ezekiel Elliott is going to have a huge bounce-back season, and Dak has a legit shot at MVP is he’s able to play all 17 games. I think Dan Quinn and first-round pick Micah Parsons will make huge impacts on the defensive side of the ball, leading the Cowboys to go from the worst defense in football in 2020 to around league average this season. All in all, I think the Cowboys are a very good team, if healthy, but I still believe they are a little ways from being a true Super Bowl contender. Teams like the Buccaneers, Chiefs, Packers, and Bills all are much more well-rounded than the Cowboys are. Still, I have the Cowboys winning the NFC East with a 11-6 record, but once again being eliminated in the Divisional Round.

OCC - 12-5

The 2021 record prediction comes down to one fairly simple question: On a scale of 0-17, how much do you believe in the offense?

For me, that number is probably somewhere between 11-12. I have a very high confidence in the 2021 offense, and barring an accumulation of injuries, it should be a top five unit in the league. The defense, while improved, will probably still see the Cowboys offense play in a fair number of close games, where one lucky or unlucky bounce of the ball will determine the outcome of the game, so they are bound to lose some close ones. The team will likely benefit from playing in the decrepit NFC East, and if they go 5-1 in the East, they’d need to go 7-4 or 6-5 outside the division - which doesn’t seem insurmountable, even for a team that will still have some growing pains on defense.

We discussed a season prediction for the Dallas Cowboys this year in the latest video on the Blogging The Boys YouTube Channel.

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