*Here's the case for why Romo is a legitimate MVP candidate, research by our own Jordan Ross.
*Jerry Jones has options when it comes to Dez's contract. Find out what they are.
*The Cowboys get talked about on CowboysHQ Discussion Boards. Get your free membership along with almost 25,000 Cowboys fans! Among the things being talked about: Coach Jason Garrett's commitment to the idea that even with so little to play for in Washington on Sunday (in regard to postseason position), "We're going to practice and we're going to play.'' ... Translation: at this early stage, this isn't yet seen by the organization as some pickup game.
Dallas has been 11-4 four other times in club history. 3/4 of those teams achieved first-round byes.
The Cowboys are 10-21 all-time on the road in season finales.
Since 2000, the Cowboys have played in the third-most season finales on the road with 10. Only Jacksonville (12) and Carolina (11) have played in more in that span.
The Cowboys are 1-9 in season finales on the road since 2000. It is the second-fewest wins. Only Houston and Arizona have fewer.
Since 2000, the Redskins are 6-3 in season finales at home, which are the sixth-most wins in that span. Two of them came against the Cowboys and on the same date (12/30).
The Dallas Cowboys are 17-14 against the Washington Redskins in December.
The Cowboys are an even 28-28 against the Washington Redskins on the road. Here is the breakdown by venue:
Griffith Stadium: 0-1
RFK Stadium: 18-20
FedEx Field: 10-7
The Cowboys’ 10-7 record at FedEx Field is the third-best in the NFC East:
NY Giants: 10-7-1
The longest winning streak the Cowboys have had at FedEx Field is four games. The Giants and Eagles each have had five-game winning streaks there.
The Dallas Cowboys are 2-6 against the Washington Redskins in season finales, which is their worst record against division rivals in a season finale:
St. Louis/Phoenix/Arizona: 4-0
New York Giants: 4-6
The Cowboys have never won a season finale in Washington. All two victories came in Dallas at Texas Stadium.
A loss Sunday would be the second time Washington swept the Cowboys and yet Dallas still went to the postseason. The other time was 1995, the Cowboys’ last Super Bowl season.
On Tuesday, Romo was selected to his fourth Pro Bowl. He has always made the Pro Bowl in years Dallas has made the playoffs, and failed to go to Hawaii when the Cowboys have failed to reach the postseason. Wednesday, by the way, was a "Romo Wednesday,'' as he continued his season rhythm of sitting out the midweek workout.
Romo is four touchdowns away from tying the franchise record of 36, which he set in 2007.
Romo’s 114.4 passer rating is the highest passer rating in franchise history for a quarterback who has started 10 or more games.
Romo’s 111.4 passer rating is just the fifth-highest among top passer ratings since 2000.
Romo’s four game-winning drives this season are second-most in the league and also second-most in a season for his career.
Romo has been injured in three out of the past four Washington games with all the injuries involving either his back or ribs.
Romo has never won a season finale on the road.
Romo has tossed 12 touchdown passes at FedEx Field, the most of any Cowboys quarterback and the third-most by an opposing quarterback in the stadium’s history.
Washington linebacker Ryan Kerrigan has sacked Romo the second-most times with five.
Redskins cornerback DeAngelo Hall has defended the most of Romo’s passes with nine. He, and former teammate London Fletcher, have the most picks against Romo with three apiece.
If Romo completes 13 passes, he will pass the late Steve McNair for 28th place in all-time completions.
If Romo has a 300-yard game, he will surpass Steve DeBerg for 26th place all-time in passing yards.
If Romo throws for three touchdowns, he will surpass Y.A. Tittle for 21st place in the all-time touchdowns list.
Currently, Romo and Staubach are tied for 94th-most interceptions with 109. A pick Sunday gives Romo sole possession of 94th place.
Romo has earned just one roughing the passer penalty this season, tied for second-fewest in the league. Meanwhile, Washington leads the league in earning roughing the passer penalties with seven.
The last finale RG3 played in was against the Cowboys on 12/30/12.
Griffin is the first Washington quarterback taken in the first round to start 36 games through his first three seasons since Norm Snead from 1961-63.
The Giants are the only NFC East team against whom Griffin has a losing record. He is 3-2 against Philadelphia and 2-1 against Dallas.
Griffin has an 87.2 passer rating against the Cowboys, which is his lowest against any NFC East team.
Griffin has been sacked by the Cowboys just eight times in his career, tied with Tampa Bay for fifth-most in his career.
Cowboys defensive end Anthony Spencer’s three sacks against Griffin are the fifth-most against him in his career.
Dallas cornerback Orlando Scandrick is the only defender currently on the team to have picked off Griffin.
The second-biggest play of Griffin’s career, a 68-yard touchdown to receiver Aldrick Robinson, came against the Cowboys on Thanksgiving 2012.
The fewest yards Griffin has thrown in a complete game and won was 100, which he did against the Cowboys on 12/30/12.
Griffin has a 5-2 December record.
Murray is the first Cowboys running back since Emmitt Smith in 1998-99 to make consecutive Pro Bowls.
Murray also joins Emmitt, Tony Dorsett, Calvin Hill, and Herschel Walker as the only Cowboys running backs to make multiple trips to Hawaii.
Murray is just 29 yards away from breaking Emmitt’s mark of most rushing yards in a single season at 1,773. The fewest yards Murray has ever gained in a single game as a starter is 24 yards.
Since 2011, the Cowboys are 7-1 in December when Murray scores a rushing touchdown compared to 1-7 when he does not.
The last 3-4 team Murray has rushed for 100 or more yards against was Washington earlier this season on Oct. 27 when he carried the ball 19 times for 141 yards.
This is the second time in Murray’s career he has rushed for a touchdown through four-straight games, tying a career-high.
The only receiving touchdown of Murray’s career so far has been that 10-yard touchdown catch to win the game 24-23 last season on Dec. 22.
Garrett would become the first head coach since Tom Landry to be swept twice by the Redskins.
Garrett is 1-3 in season finales with the lone finale victory coming in 2010 to give Dallas a 6-10 finish.
Garrett is 5-3 against Washington in his career, which ties Bill Parcells for the best mark through the first eight games:
Tom Landry: 3-3-2
Jimmy Johnson: 4-4
Barry Switzer: 4-4
Bill Parcells: 5-3
Jason Garrett: 5-3
Garrett is 10-3 on the road in the NFC East.
Garrett has achieved an 11-win season in his first four complete years as Cowboys head coach. Here is how long it took other Cowboys coaches:
A win Sunday would make Garrett just the fifth head coach in franchise history to lead Dallas to a 12-wins-or-more season.
Gruden would be the first Washington head coach since Steve Spurrier to win a season finale in his first season.
With a loss, Gruden would join Lud Wray, Curly Lambeau, and Richie Petitbon as the only head coaches in franchise history to achieve just four wins in their inaugural season.
With a win, Gruden would join William Dietz and Turk Edwards as the only coaches in team history to record five wins in their first season.
Gruden would become the first Washington head coach in franchise history to sweep the Cowboys in just his first season. Comparatively, Dallas has had five of their eight head coaches who have done so (Switzer, Gailey, Campo, Parcells, Garrett).
If Gruden could defeat the Cowboys, he would have three NFC East wins, which would join Jim Zorn, Joe Gibbs, and Bill Austin as the only first-year Washington head coaches to do so.
Kevin Burkhardt and John Lynch will be calling the game Sunday, just as they did on Dec. 22 last season when Romo led Dallas to a 24-23 win with a herniated disc. Both teams have not had Burkhardt and Lynch since that game.
Burkhardt and Lynch are the eighth broadcast team to call a Cowboys-Redskins game for FOX. Here is a look at the other pairings:
1994-1999 – Pat Summerall and John Madden
1994-1999 – Dick Stockton and Matt Millen
2000-2001 – Sam Rosen and Bill Maas
2002 – Pat Summerall and Brian Baldinger
2002-present – Joe Buck, Troy Aikman, and Cris Collinsworth (until 2004)
2003-04 – Dick Stockton, Daryl Johnston, and Tony Siragusa
2010-present – Kenny Albert, Daryl Johnston, and Tony Siragusa
2013-present – Kevin Burkhardt and John Lynch
Kevin Burkhardt used to call Dallas Cowboys games with ex-Cowboy quarterback Danny White on Compass Media Network’s Dallas Cowboys radio broadcasts. The Cowboys were 16-16 when he called their games.
Burkhardt has only called one Redskins game, a Week 11 encounter in Philadelphia in 2013. Washington lost.
John Lynch has called three Cowboys games in his career. Dallas is 2-1.
Lynch has called four previous Redskins games since becoming an analyst in 2008. The Redskins are 1-3.
The Cowboys hold an 18-9 advantage over the Redskins on FOX.
Cowboys-Redskins has been played on 5/7 possible broadcast networks. Here is a breakdown of the Cowboys’ record against the Redskins by network:
Jason Garrett holds a 23-17 record on FOX.
This week’s referee is Jerome Boger, whose last officiated Cowboys game was the Giants-Cowboys game on Oct. 19. Dallas is 5-4 when Boger referees. Here are the results:
2006 — @Titans, 45-14 — W
2006 — @ATL, 38-28 — W
2008 — @NYG, 14-35 — L
2009 — SEA, 38-17 — W
2010 — NO, 27-30 — L
2011 — BUF, 44-7 — W
2013 – @KC, 16-17 – L
2013 – @NO, 17-49 – L
2014 – NYG, 31-21 – W
The Dallas Cowboys have only ever had fewer penalties than their opponent 5/9 times under Jerome Boger:
2006 — Titans: 5/55; DAL: 5/61
2006 — ATL: 8/68; DAL: 4/32
2008 — NYG: 8/65; DAL: 9/55
2009 — SEA: 6/53; DAL: 5/43
2010 — NO: 4/30; DAL: 4/19
2011 — BUF: 3/12; DAL: 8/74
2013 – KC: 10/45; DAL: 5/27
2013 – NO: 6/44; DAL: 11/82
2014 – NYG: 6/40; DAL: 6/46
Jerome Boger is tied for the second-best home team winning percentage in the league:
Ed Hochuli: .786
Gene Steratore: .714
Jerome Boger: .714
Tony Corrente: .643
Jeff Triplette: .643
Bill Vinovich: .600
Pete Morelli: .571
Craig Wrolstad: .571
Walt Anderson: .533
Bill Leavy: .500
Carl Cheffers: .500
Terry McAulay: .500
Walt Coleman: .429
John Parry: .429
Brad Allen: .429
Clete Blakeman: .429
In terms of home teams having fewer penalties than their opponents, Boger’s percentage drops to fifth-best in the NFL:
Terry McAulay: .786
Tony Corrente: .769
Brad Allen: .786
Bill Vinovich: .667
Jerome Boger: .643
Jeff Triplette: .643
Craig Wrolstad: .615
Walt Anderson: .600
Walt Coleman: .643
Carl Cheffers: .536
Pete Morelli: .462
Ed Hochuli: .429
Clete Blakeman: .357
Gene Steratore: .357
Bill Leavy: .308
John Parry: .286
Washington is 6-3 when Boger referees their games. Here are the results:
2007 – CHI, 24-16 – W
2008 – PHI, 10-3 – W
2009 – Rams, 9-7 – W
2010 – @DET, 25-37 – L
2010 – @JAX, 20-17 – W-OT
2011 – @CAR, 20-33 – L
2012 – NYG, 17-16 – W
2013 – SD, 30-24 – W-OT
2014 – @HTX, 6-17 – L
Additionally, Washington has won the penalty battle 6/9 times with Boger:
2007 – CHI: 9/49; WAS: 7/48
2008 – PHI: 3/20; WAS: 3/25
2009 – Rams: 6/45; WAS: 5/35
2010 – DET: 10/77; WAS: 7/65
2010 – JAX: 7/66; WAS: 5/40
2011 – CAR: 13/105; WAS: 3/26
2012 – NYG: 9/73; WAS: 4/56
2013 – SD: 7/63; WAS: 7/65
2014 – HTX: 6/45; WAS: 7/71
Dallas has yet to lose a challenge when Boger goes under the hood (4/4). Additionally, opponents are 0/3 on challenges, and Replay Assistant is 1/2 with just one of those verdicts benefiting the Cowboys.
Washington is 2/5 on challenges with Boger with opponents going 1/5. Replay Assistant challenges are 1/8 with five of those decisions benefiting Washington.
Jerome Boger has a son, Tra Boger, who tried out for the Green Bay Packers in 2006 and the Tampa Bay Buccaneers in 2007 at the defensive back position.
Dez Bryant has 39 catches for 542 yards and five touchdowns against the Redskins. The catches and touchdowns are the most by a wide receiver against Washington since 2010.
Bryant is the first Cowboys receiver since Miles Austin to go to his second-straight Pro Bowl.
Jason Witten has the most catches against Washington since 1960 with 104. The next closest pass-catcher is Michael Irvin with 96.
Witten’s 1,170 yards against Washington are the most since 2003. The next closest is Jeremy Maclin with 748.
Witten is currently tied with Terrell Owens for second-most touchdowns against Washington with seven. If Witten gets one more, he will tie Anquan Boldin for the most since 2003.
This is just the third season out of Witten’s 12 to have not been selected for the Pro Bowl.
Witten is currently tied with Randy White for fourth-most Pro Bowl appearances in team history.
Witten is second to Larry Allen for most appearances by an offensive player.
FedEx Field is tied for seven-most false starts by opponents with 11.
One of the scenarios that gives Dallas a first-round bye is a tie between Green Bay and Detroit. Since 1974, when the NFL instituted overtime, there have been 20 tie games. 2/20 of those tie games occurred in December.
Since 1974, the Green Bay Packers have played in the most tie games with five.
The last Cowboys quarterback to win a season finale on the road was Stephen McGee when he led Dallas to a 14-13 victory over the Philadelphia Eagles in 2010. The last one before that was Troy Aikman in 1995 on Christmas Day.
The last NFL MVP to win the award despite not playing all 16 games was Aaron Rodgers in 2011, though that was due to Mike McCarthy resting Rodgers. In the context of being injured, it was Steve McNair in 2003.
The only Cowboys quarterback to make the Pro Bowl despite the team failing to reach the playoffs was Eddie LeBaron in 1962.
Washington hasn’t had a first-round quarterback start every game in a season since Jason Campbell, who did it twice from 2008-09.
This is the first time since the year 2000 the Cowboys have failed to send a defensive player to the Pro Bowl.
The last time the Cowboys sent three offensive linemen to the Pro Bowl was 2008.
Travis Frederick joins Dave Manders, Ray Donaldson, and Mark Stepnoski as the Cowboys’ Pro Bowl centers.
Michael Irvin leads the franchise in most Pro Bowl appearances by a wide receiver with five.
Michael Irvin is tied with Roy Green and Sonny Randle for the most touchdown catches against Washington with 13.
Washington quarterbacks are tied for second-most intentional grounding penalties in the league with two.
The Redskins defense is tied for fourth in earning the most intentional grounding penalties with two.
The Cowboys and Redskins are tied for fifth-most roughing the passer penalties in the league with three each.
Washington has been the beneficiary of the “invalid fair catch signal” penalty twice this season.
The Dallas Cowboys are 3-3 on 12/28. Here are the results:
1969 – CLE, 14-38 – L
1975 – @MIN, 17-14 – W
1980 – Rams, 34-13 – W
1996 – MIN, 40-15 – W
2003 – @NO, 7-13 – L
2008 – @PHI, 6-44 – L
The Dallas Cowboys have four birthdays to celebrate on 12/28, including that of cornerback Everson Walls, who is tied for most interceptions against Washington since 1960:
Mark Washington, CB, 1970-1978 – 12/28/1947
Everson Walls, CB, 1981-1989 – 12/28/1959
Darrick Brownlow, LB, 1991 & 1994 – 12/28/1968
Vince Agnew, CB, 2012 – 12/28/1987