The 2020 Cowboys a new head coach in the building, a QB yet to be signed, an elite level RB, and a receiving corps that has the potential to be one of the best in the league. With the schedule now out and all the road trips, homestands, bye-weeks, and prime-time games named we can begin to predict just how the year will go.
Vegas lists the Cowboys with an over/under of 9.5 at the time of writing, with a slight lean in the betting towards the over. Is this a realistic prediction or should we be expecting more (or less) from a tricky schedule?
2020 Cowboys off to a decent start
With a largely intact team, assuming Dak gets into camp on time, the main question is how much of an impact new HC Mike McCarthy has on performances from the off. Given a roster that has underperformed over the last few seasons, expectations are very high for opening day.
While not the easiest opening, a road-trip to LA against the Rams isn’t the same proposition it was two years ago, and we expect a close fought game with the Cowboys coming out on top. With a home game against the Falcons coming off a short week up next, the 2020 Cowboys look to start the season 2-0.
A tricky trip to Seattle follows, and despite the confidence from that early start the Cowboys drop their first of the season and return to Dallas for an all-important homestand. I think these three games are the perfect launchpad for the Cowboys and wins against the Browns and Giants will be reasonably comfortable.
In the final game of the three-game stretch, the Cardinals are a team on the up but are no match for a 2020 Cowboys team that at this point has some real momentum rolling as they play their second Monday night game in 6-weeks and put up another W to take their record to 5-1
Despite a new Head Coach in Washington, there’s really not much to fear from the Redskins at the moment, so another comfortable win. The Eagles in Philly are another prospect altogether and I see the four-game win streak ended here, as the Cowboys drop to 6-2 before returning home to beat Pittsburgh in the final game before the bye-week.
The second half is where you make your money
A tough trip to Minnesota isn’t the ideal way to return to action after your bye-week in some ways, but it should mean the boys are back in fighting mood straight away and I think they harass Kirk Cousins to the point of exhaustion and move to 7-2.
A short-week heading into the Thanksgiving home game against the Redskins really shouldn’t pose too big a problem, and this win takes the 2020 Cowboys to 8-2 heading into a road trip to Baltimore. With the Ravens at home, and a defense that is so hard to break down in Baltimore, Dallas will drop their third game of the season.
A comfortable win in Cincinnati will lead us into arguably the hardest three-game stretch all season. The 49ers will come in and look to run the ball down our throats and keep the ball out of the hands of Jimmy Garoppolo. However, unless Jimmy can beat this D, I don’t see Mike McCarthy letting that happen easily.
In probably the hardest fought game of the season, I think the 49ers have just too much and the Cowboys lose their first home game of the season. At 9-4 heading into the last two games, both divisional games, the 2020 Cowboys will need to be on their mettle.
With Carson Wentz and the Eagles coming to down, assuming Wentz is actually healthy all season, this is the pivotal game that will decide between another lost season and a playoff season. This time Dallas will get the job done and move to 10-5, before closing out the season with a more comfortable win in NY against the Giants.
Finishing the season at 11-5 and winning the division in his first year Mike McCarthy will have found out a lot about his team along the way. The playoffs are a whole other season, but I think this roster has the makings of a contender this season, assuming a nice and easy camp for once.
If you a gambling man or woman, I would jump on the overs this season. It may become from squeaky towards the end of the season but at the end of the season, I think you’ll be sitting on a nice little winner with these 2020 Cowboys.