Wednesday News & Notes

Defensive end Greg Ellis and linebacker DeMarcus Ware shared the team lead with eight sacks.

* The Cowboys' 2006 opponents have been set. Along with the traditional NFC East foes Philadelphia, Washington and the New York Giants, the Cowboys will face off against the NFC South and AFC South. By finishing third in the NFC East this season, the Cowboys' other two opponents will be Detroit from the NFC North and Arizona from the NFC West. Here is where those games will take place next season:

Home: N.Y. Giants, Philadelphia, Washington, New Orleans, Tampa Bay, Detroit, Houston, Indianapolis.

Away: N.Y. Giants, Philadelphia, Washington, Atlanta, Carolina, Arizona, Jacksonville, Tennessee.

* With their 9-7 record this season, the Cowboys finished tied with Miami, Minnesota and San Diego. With a .523 opponents' winning percentage this season, the Cowboys will draft 18th overall in the first round.

* Running back Julius Jones missed out on his preseason goal of 1,700 yards and 20 touchdowns.

So he set his sights on rushing for 1,000 yards and making history. With Thomas Jones of Bears already over the 1,000 yards, the Jones brothers seemed poised to become the first siblings to top the 1,000-yard barrier in a season in NFL history.

With Julius Jones needing 42 yards against the Rams' 30th-ranked run defense, it seemed like a sure bet.

It wasn't.

Julius Jones gained only 35 yards on 15 carries to come up 7 yards short.

* Quarterback Drew Bledsoe was sacked 49 times in 2005 following five sacks against the Rams. It is the most sacks of a Cowboys quarterback since Don Meredith's 58 in 1964. It was also the Bledsoe's fifth season of 40 or more sacks.

* Defensive end Greg Ellis and linebacker DeMarcus Ware shared the team lead with eight sacks this season. By doing so, Ellis becomes just the second Cowboy in club history to lead the team in sacks for five consecutive years. Jethro Pugh also led the team five straight years from 1968-72. Ellis has now led the Cowboys in sacks six times during his career, the second most in club history behind Harvey Martin's mark of seven seasons leading the club in sacks. Ware's eight gave him the second most in club history by a linebacker. He also posted the third-best single-season sack total by a rookie in club history.

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