“Home field advantage” has been a topic for the Dallas Cowboys for a long time. Even in some of their most successful seasons overall, the Cowboys haven’t always enjoyed an advantage from playing at AT&T Stadium. But if victorious in its final two home games this season, Dallas will have accomplished something rarely seen in Jerry’s World.
Since losing the season opener to Tampa Bay at home, the Cowboys have reeled off six-straight wins at AT&T Stadium. They have two left in the regular season, this Sunday against the Houston Texans and the big Week 16 showdown with the Philadelphia Eagles.
If the Cowboys finish with an 8-1 record at home this year, it will be only the third time since they moved into the new stadium that they’ve finished with just one loss. They went 7-1 in 2016 and 2018. Of course, those were before the 17th game was added last year.
Believe it or not, things weren’t any better at Texas Stadium. The last time that the Cowboys went 7-1 in Irving was 1999 and before that was in 1992. There was another long gap between 1992 and 1985.
The last time that Dallas was perfect at home was in the 1980-1981 seasons, when they went 16-0 over those two years.
While mainly a point for novelty and trivia, establishing home dominance isn’t just for the geeks. There’s a mystique when you go into certain places with a clear advantage, be it the crowd noise, weather, or whatever else makes that stadium part of the challenge for the visiting team.
So far in its 13-year history, Jerry’s World has mystified visiting fans but not really been intimidating to visiting NFL teams. Their delight in trying to embarrass America’s Team quickly takes over and overrides any awe from the facility.
Home field will mean a little more than usual this Sunday in the interstate rivalry game with the Houston Texans. The two Texas franchises have only met five times before in regular season games, and the Cowboys have a narrow 3-2 edge in that series. They’ve gone 2-0 so far in the games played at home; one at AT&T at the other at Texas Stadium.
With the Texans coming in cold at 1-10-1 this year, this should be a great record-padding opportunity for the Cowboys. It would leave them with one remaining home game before the playoffs; Christmas Eve against the Eagles. Assuming Dallas handles its business this Sunday, getting to 8-1 at home would be just another goal on the line against Philadelphia.
Of course, we’re far more concerned with Dallas potentially winning the NFC East and playoff positioning. But putting some more respect on AT&T Stadium’s name would be a nice side accomplishment, and getting a rare eight wins at home in 2022 would certainly help.