Dallas Cowboys 101...1979

Discussion in 'History Zone' started by Hostile, Jun 27, 2007.

  1. Hostile

    Hostile The Duke

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    Row 1
    • 1 Rafael Septien, K
    • 11 Danny White, QB
    • 12 Roger Staubach, QB, Pro Bowl *
    • 18 Glenn Carano, QB
    • 20 Ron Springs, RB
    • 22 Wade Manning, WR
    • 24 Alois Blackwell, RB
    • 25 Aaron Kyle, CB
    • 26 Preston Pearson, RB
    Row 2
    • 31 Benny Barnes, DB
    • 32 Dennis Thurman, DB
    • 33 Tony Dorsett, RB
    • 34 Aaron Mitchell, CB
    • 35 Scott Laidlaw, RB
    • 36 Larry Brinson, RB
    • 42 Randy Hughes, S
    • 43 Cliff Harris, S, Pro Bowl
    • 44 Robert Newhouse, FB
    Row 3
    • 50 D. D. Lewis, LB
    • 52 Robert Shaw, C
    • 53 Bob Breunig, LB, Pro Bowl
    • 54 Randy White, DT, Pro Bowl *, All Pro
    • 56 Thomas Henderson, LB
    • 57 Bruce Huther, LB
    • 58 Mike Hegman, LB
    • 59 Guy Brown, LB
    • 61 Jim Cooper, OL
    Row 4
    • 62 John Fitzgerald, C
    • 63 Larry Cole, DL
    • 64 Tom Rafferty, G/C
    • 65 Dave Stalls, DE
    • 66 Burton Lawless, G
    • 67 Pat Donovan, T, Pro Bowl *
    • 68 Herbert Scott, G, Pro Bowl
    • 70 Rayfield Wright, E
    • 71 Andy Frederick, T
    • 75 Richard Grimmett, T
    Row 5
    • 76 Larry Bethea, DL
    • 77 Bruce Thornton, DL
    • 79 Harvey Martin, DE, Pro Bowl *
    • 80 Tony Hill, WR, Pro Bowl
    • 81 Steve Wilson, WR/CB
    • 84 Doug Cosbie, TE
    • 86 Butch Johnson, WR
    • 87 Jay Saldi, TE
    • 88 Drew Pearson, WR
    • 89 Billy Joe DuPree, TE
    Row 6
    • Tom Landry, Head Coach
    • Jim Myers, Coach
    • Ermal Allen, Coach
    • Mike Ditka, Coach
    • Dan Reeves, Coach
    • Ernie Stautner, Coach
    • Gene Stallings, Coach
    • Jerry Tubbs, Coach
    • Bob Ward, Coach
    • Don Cochren, Trainer
    • Ken Locker, Assistant Trainer
    • Buck Buchanan, Equipment Manager
    * = Starter

    :star: 1979 Cowboys Draft :star:
    1…Robert Shaw, C, Tennessee
    2…Aaron Mitchell, DB, UNLV
    3…Doug Cosbie, TE, Santa Clara
    3 time Pro Bowl...1983-85
    4…Ralph DeLoach, DE, California
    5…Bob Hukill, G, North Carolina
    5…Curtis Anderson, DE, Central State (OH)
    5…Ron Springs, RB, Ohio State
    6…Tim Lavender, DB, USC
    6…Mike Salzano, G, North Carolina
    6…Chris DeFrance, WR, Arizona State
    7…Greg Fitzpatrick, LB, Youngstown State
    8…Bruce Thornton, DT, Illinois
    9…Garry Cobb, LB, USC
    10…Mike Calhoun, DT, Notre Dame
    12…Quentin Lowry, LB, Youngstown State

    :star: 1979 Cowboys Schedule :star:
    Year 14 of 20 year winning streak

    NFC East Division Champs (7th)

    9/2/79…Won @ St. Louis Cardinals, 22-21
    9/9/79…Won @ San Francisco 49ers, 21-13
    9/16/79…Won vs. Chicago Bears, 24-20
    9/24/79…Lost @ Cleveland Browns, 7-26
    9/30/79…Won vs. Cincinnati Bengals, 38-13
    10/7/79…Won @ Minnesota Vikings, 36-20
    10/14/79…Won vs. Los Angeles Rams, 30-6
    10/21/79…Won vs. St. Louis Cardinals, 22-13
    10/28/79…Lost @ Pittsburgh Steelers, 3-14
    11/4/79…Won @ New York Giants, 16-14
    11/12/79…Lost vs. Philadelphia Eagles, 21-31
    11/18/79…Lost @ Washington Redskins, 20-34
    11/22/79…Lost vs. Houston Oilers, 24-30
    12/2/79…Won vs. New York Giants, 28-7
    12/8/79…Won @ Philadelphia Eagles, 24-17
    12/16/79…Won vs. Washington Redskins, 35-34

    6-2 @ Dallas
    5-3 on the road

    Points scored...371, 23.2 ppg
    Points allowed...313, 19.6 ppg

    12/30/79...Lost vs. Los Angeles Rams, 19-21

    All time franchise record...172-104-6
    All time Post Season Record...15-11

    THUMPER Papa

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    1979 was the end of an era for the Cowboys as it was Roger Staubach's final season. It was a tough year in many ways as Jethro Pugh retired, Ed "Too Tall" Jones retired to take up boxing, and All-Pro Safety Charlie Waters tore up his knee in pre-season and was out for the year.

    Still, we won the division in a close race with the Eagles but I still can't figure out the tie-breaker that was used, but it was very close as both teams went 11-5 with 2 losses in the division, one to each other and one to the Redskins each. Going into the final weekend of the season all 3 teams (Cowboys, Eagles, and Redskins) were tied at 10-5 and the division would be decided in the Dallas/Washington game.

    We had the #1 offense in the NFC and Staubach had the best year of his career and ranked first again. Tony Hill and Drew Pearson both gained over 1000 yards receiving and Dorsett had over 1100 yards rushing.

    The defense suffered with 3 starters missing but Randy White, Harvey Martin, Bob Breunig, and Cliff Harris had excellent seasons and kept us respectable throughout, but we weren't the dominating defense we had been last year.

    In the final game of the season against the Redskins, with the division title on the line, Roger Staubach played the best game of his career. Down 34-21 with less than 7 minutes to go, Roger took over the game. He hit Ron Springs with a TD pass with 3 minutes to go. Then Larry Cole stuffed John Riggins short of a first down and got the ball back with about a minute to go. Staubach then hit Tony Hill for a TD pass with 39 seconds to go in the game for a 35-34 victory and the division title.

    In the playoffs we faced the Rams for the 5th time in the 70s. Three times we had obliterated them and once they stole a win from us (1976) and knocked us out of the playoffs. With the way Staubach and the rest of the team had been playing lately I just knew we would annihilate them again.

    The Rams had barely made the playoffs with a 9-7 record and only made it in because they played in the worst division in football. The NFC East had 3 teams who won 10 games or more and it had come down to the final seconds before it was decided who would win it.

    The game started out well for us as we sacked Rams QB Vince Ferragamo in the endzone for a safety but the Rams came back in the 2nd quarter with 2 TD passes while we managed only a FG after failing to score from inside the Rams' 20. Down 14-5 in the 2nd half we took over and scored a TD in both the 3rd and 4th quarters to take a 19-14 lead late in the game.

    I thought that lead would hold as we had the Rams stuck around midfield with time running out but then WR Billy Waddy caught a pass and the DB slipped trying to make the tackle and he ran all the way for the score. We got the ball back but with not enough time left to make a run and were knocked out of the playoffs by 2 points again by the Rams.

    It was a very disappointing end to a great season and a lousy way for Staubach to go out. Roger hadn't played a particularly great game completing less than half his passes but the Rams had a very good pass defense and, other than the last TD pass, didn't fare any better against us.

    Tamp Bay beat the Eagles and faced the Rams in the NFC Championship game, losing a close, defensive battle 9-0. The Rams looked very good against the Stealers in the SB and held a lead going into the 4th quarter but Pittsburgh scored 2 TDs in the 4th and won it 31-19.

    Many people blamed Too Tall's absence as the reason we didn't go back to the SB as his boxing career didn't work out and he returned to the team the following season, but there were a lot of reasons why we didn't repeat as NFC Champs that year, he was just one of them.

    Our running game was not as effective as it had been in 77 or 78 as Landry tried to limit Dorsett's carries to preserve his body. Tony had 250 carries and the other 3 RBs (Newhouse, Springs, & Laidlaw) had 260. That was a good idea but the other RBs weren't nearly as explosive as Dorsett and we reverted back to where we were in 1976. The passing game was very potent though but with more reliance on the deep passes rather than mixing it up more. I felt we didn't utilize Preston Pearson and DuPree enough and went deep too often.

    Losing Charlie Waters was also a big hit to us as he was the key to our pass defense and our INTs went down as did our sacks. The combination of losing Jones and Waters was too much for the defense to overcome IMO.

    I kept hoping that Staubach would change his mind about retiring as it was obvious that he was still at the peak of his game but he was ready to go and wasn't the kind of person who changes his mind once it is made up.

    Still, we had a great team and would contend for a number of years before having to rebuild so there was always hope.
  3. Hostile

    Hostile The Duke

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    The final game of the year against the Redskins is still the best football game I ever watched. It was literally winner take all. The team that won the game was going to be NFC East Champions. The loser was missing the playoffs and going home.

    Even though we were down 34-21 late in the 4th quarter I just had this feeling that Roger Staubach could win it, and that's exactly what he did. I don't think I ever saw him better than in those final 2 drives. It was unbelievable how calm he was and how the team just rallied around him. Even the defense suddenly just played like their lives depended on it.

    In the DVD history of the Cowboys Mark Murphy, the Safety for the Redskins talked about how confident his teammates were that the game was in hand and how he just dreaded Roger having the ball and time on the clock.

    Before the game some of the Redskins had a black funeral wreath delivered to the Cowboys locker room. After the game "Beautiful" Harvey Martin took the wreath marched over to the Redskins locker room, opened the door, yelled an insult at the Redskins, and threw the wreath into their locker room. Right in the middle of their team prayer.

    We lost in the playoffs to the Rams and in March of that off season Roger Staubach retired. I felt like part of me was dying when he did. What a fantastic leader and QB Roger Staubach was, and more importantly, what a great man.
  4. lurkercowboy

    lurkercowboy Well-Known Member

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    This was the first season that I followed the Cowboys from start to finish. Before this, I only watched a few playoff games. I'm glad that I had the chance to watch Staubach play.

    The team had a slump in midseason this year but pulled out of it at the end to beat the Giants, Eagles and Redskins. A good way to end a slump right?

    I'll never forget the Thanksgiving game that season. Earl Campbell ran all over the Dallas D, missing Thomas Henderson who was cut that week. Also, the rookie Dallas Center Robert Shaw was dominated by Houston NT Curley Culp. Still it was a close game. My Redskin fan cousins were whooping it up.

    Dallas played in the Hall of Fame game that season against the Raiders by the way. The playoff tiebreaker between Dallas and the Eagles was conference record.
  5. bbgun

    bbgun Benched

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    Yeah, me too. That 14-3 loss to Pittsburgh was particularly disappointing, as Roger was knocked out with yet another concussion. Losing Too Tall, Waters and Hollywood Henderson was just too much to overcome. And I can still see Billy Waddy streaking across the middle. Before Dwight Clark, that was "The Catch."

    Roger walks off field after loss to Rams.
  6. lurkercowboy

    lurkercowboy Well-Known Member

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    Fun season. Bad Steeler game of course. My TV reception was terrible that day.

    We only needed a field goal to win the playoff game after that Waddy TD. I fully expected to win the game even after that, especially with Staubach at the helm. But we all know how it turned out.

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