During July, the Last Word On Sports NFL department will be analyzing the schedules of every team in the NFL and ranking each game in order of difficulty (with one being the most difficult). This series will be split up into the eight most difficult games (ranked 1-8) and the eight easiest games (ranked 9-16) for each team. In this article, the Dallas Cowboys easiest games are the focus.
Dallas Cowboys Easiest Games in 2016
9. Week 3 vs Chicago Bears
The Cowboys will have a tough time covering Bears wide receiver Alshon Jeffery. He broke out last season as one of the fastest receivers in the league. The Cowboys may need to put double coverage on him during the entire game.
10. Week 11 vs Baltimore Ravens
The Cowboys and Ravens both finished with a 4-12 record last season. The difference is the Cowboys finished 4-12 after losing one player. The Ravens finished 4-12 after losing several players, including wide receiver Steve Smith Sr and quarterback Joe Flacco, both of whom tore their ACLs.
The Ravens will have Flacco and Smith back, as well as running back Justin Forsett, who broke his arm last season. The Cowboys will have another tough day on their hands with this Ravens team.
11. Week 16 vs Detroit Lions
The Lions have given the Cowboys much trouble throughout their past couple of meetings. In 2011, the Lions overcame a 34-3 lead to win in Dallas. In 2013, the Lions drove 60+ yards in just seconds to beat them in Detroit. In the 2014 wild card round, the Lions held a 14-0 lead in Dallas. No matter what it is, they must find a way to beat the Lions in simple fashion.
12. Week 12 vs Tampa Bay Buccaneers
The Buccaneers have not had much luck in Dallas in recent memory. However, quarterback Jameis Winston did lead the Bucs to big road wins last season, including a win in New Orleans over the Saints. Dallas will be hoping that what happened to them last year in Tampa won’t happen this time around.
13. Week 13 vs Philadelphia Eagles
The Eagles are looking they will be the 4-12 team in 2016 that the Cowboys were in 2015. They are looking like they will start quarterback Sam Bradford, who has thrown 10+ interceptions in all but two seasons throughout his career. With the team that they have and the home crowd behind them, pulling out the win should be no problem.
14. Week 17 at Philadelphia Eagles
Just like with the games against the Giants and Redskins, the only real difference is change of fandom and change of scenery. Dallas should be able to close out the regular season with a win.
15. Week 4 at San Francisco 49ers
This 49ers team is so bad, they don’t even know who their starting quarterback is. One of their quarterbacks went from NFC champion to being benched. Their other quarterback has started just a few games, so he could possibly also be a mediocre quarterback. The Cowboys are looking at a win in San Francisco.
16. Week 9 at Cleveland Browns
It’s the Browns. Any team can beat the Browns, no matter if it’s in Cleveland or otherwise. The Browns currently have a first round bust in Robert Griffin III , who looks like will start for them when they begin their season. Surrounding RGIII is a wide receiving corp that is mainly rookies. Dallas will win this game. There is no doubt about it.
These were the eight easiest games of the 2016 season. Also be sure to check out the eight most difficult games.