The Dallas Cowboys can’t wait for the start of the regular season to begin.
Dallas will get a fresh start after its 14-6 loss at Houston Thursday night capped a forgettable 0-4 preseason.
How much should all those losses concern Cowboys Nation?
It was only the sixth team in team history the Cowboys failed to produce a preseason win.
The last time came in 2014 and proved to be of little forewarning for the season that followed.
Cowboys fans will remember that team finished 12-4 in the regular season in what proved to be the team’s best record in seven seasons. That team claimed the franchise’s first playoff victory in five seasons before losing at Green Bay in the celebrated “Dez Bryant” game. A key apparent catch by the Cowboys’ receiver was overruled by referees.
No team with legitimate Super Bowl championship aspirations has gone winless in the preseason in recent history. The only Super Bowl team in NFL history that failed to win a preseason game was the 1982 Washington Redskins. And that was in a strike-shortened season when the regular-season schedule was whittled to nine games.
More recently, the 1990 Buffalo Bills and 2000 New York Giants both stumbled to 0-4 record, but eventually lost in the Super Bowl. And the 2010 Chicago Bears were 0-4 in the preseason before losing in the NFC Championship Game.
More telling, only 11 Super Bowl winners since 1960 have finished the preseason with losing records, according to the Dallas Morning News.
The Cowboys’ primary objective in the loss at Houston Thursday night appeared to be keeping their regulars healthy for their season opener next week at Carolina.
Dallas produced only 43 points in the preseason, which is the fewest since Jerry Jones bought the team in 1989.
But ESPN.com reports that starting quarterback Dak Prescott played in only four drives in the preseason and the offense scored on three of them.
It’s the fewest preseason points for Dallas since scoring 36 points in 1987 — another strike-torn season where the Cowboys finished 7-8.
Garrett told the Morning News that the recent string of losses sting. But he also said the team accomplished its major preseason goal of thoroughly examining its roster.
“Obviously you have a lot of different objectives going into each game. It starts with playing time for your guys,” Garrett told the Morning News. “You absolutely want to win. You’re competing to win. Unfortunately that didn’t happen. We did get a chance to see a lot of our players, and I thought we got better as a team over the course of the four games.”