It’s like choosing your favorite kid, but some Cowboys championships are superior to others.
FRISCO – Super Bowl Guarantee: Kansas City Chiefs vs. Philadelphia Eagles in Sunday’s LVII will be disappointing…in DFW.
Why? Because once again, for the 27th straight year, the NFL’s most popular and profitable team will be involved with no more than spectators eating wings and reviewing commercials.
Super Bowls without the Dallas Cowboys are grand spectacles. But Super Bowls with the Dallas Cowboys are Spectacular Bowls.
Today, the Cowboys’ sole post-season “success” is contributing to Pro Bowl Games victories. And fans – and oddsmakers – are of course already looking forward to next season.
Hard to fathom 27 year olds living in DallasI have no idea what it’s like to watch the Cowboys in the Super Bowl. I was lucky enough to witness three of the five Cowboys’ Super Bowl victories as a writer for the Fort Worth Star-Telegram. The other two I saw on TV and remember—both times—my parents let me go to school the following Monday because it was a “Cowboys Vacation.”
Since it’s been so long — and since we’re just not that excited about a championship game involving the hated Eagles — let’s mothball the Cowboys’ Super Bowl victories and rank them. There are five. And they all represent the same thing: a championship season. But for different reasons and personal preferences, some are better than others.
5. XII 1978 Cowboys 27, Broncos 10 – Beating former teammate Craig Morton and Denver’s hyped “Orange Crush” defense was satisfying, but beating an unlucky opponent who made a record eight turnovers hardly felt great. The defense dominated, with co-MVPs Randy White and Harvey Martin leading a pass rush that allowed just eight completions for 61 yards. The sloppy Cowboys committed 12 penalties, lost the ball twice and got Roger Staubach sacked five times – and still won in a blowout. By far Dallas’ worst-played championship.
4. XXVIII 1994 Cowboys 30, Bills 13 – About as ho-hum as a Super Bowl can get, it was another expected outburst from another overmatched Buffalo Bills team in the wake of Dallas’ bigger victory over the San Francisco 49ers in the NFC Championship Game. The Cowboys actually trailed at halftime, but dominated the second half 24-0 by simply giving the ball to Emmitt Smith. The win gave Dallas back-to-back titles, something only since duplicated by the Denver Broncos (1998-99) and New England Patriots (2004-05).
3. XXX 1996 Cowboys 27, Steelers 17 – Finally, the Cowboys exacted revenge on the old rival who defeated them twice in the 1970s Super Bowls. That in itself made this one memorable. But honestly, the sensation was blunted a bit by the coaching of Barry Switzer, Larry Brown’s MVP and a hint that the dynasty was coming to an end. In hindsight we should have enjoyed this more at the time. Because we’re still waiting for the next one.
2. XXVII 1993 Cowboys 52, Bills 17 – Waiting 15 years for a new title was worth it when Garth Brooks and Michael Jackson performed at the Rose Bowl. Troy Aikman threw four touchdown passes and only Leon Lett’s premature celebration prevented Dallas from setting a Super Bowl record for most points.
1. VI 1972 Cowboys 24, Dolphins 3 – There’s always a special place in your heart for your first love and Super Bowl. Devastating title game losses to the Green Bay Packers were eventually mitigated by a dominant defense and Bob Lilly’s epic 29-yard sack of Bob Griese. “Next Year’s Champions” no more. Tom Landry finally smiling still gives us goosebumps. The feeling was 70 percent joy, 30 percent relief, and 100 percent super.
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This story was originally published on February 8, 2023 at 7:31 AM.