Most critical stretch revealed during Cowboys 2024 schedule release

The Dallas Cowboys can make or break their season during this daunting four-game stretch.
Dallas Cowboys, Dak Prescott
Dallas Cowboys, Dak Prescott / Kyle Terada-USA TODAY Sports

Everything the NFL does is huge. Something as simple as announcing the schedule turns into an event, and every team gets in on the fun with video releases to unveil theirs. The Dallas Cowboys have made a few interesting ones in the past but their 2024 release left much to be desired.

Moving on from the video, there's a lot to unpack with the Cowboys' schedule this year. First, they start off with a Week 1 matchup with the Cleveland Browns, in a game that will be called by Tom Brady. They'll also finish the year out with a meeting with Dan Quinn and the Washington Commanders.

But what's the most critical stretch of the schedule in 2024?

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Cowboys most critical stretch immediately follows bye week

Dallas has a tough game in Week 6 when they host the Detroit Lions. They defeated Detroit 20-19 in late December last season to end a two-game losing streak. It was a controversial win and will be a huge storyline when they meet again. The Cowboys will then go into a bye week, and while there will be intrigue to spare surrounding the Detroit matchup, the four-week stretch after the bye could decide the season's fate.

Week 8 will begin the gauntlet, with Dallas traveling to San Francisco to take on the 49ers. Last year, the Cowboys were tabbed "pretenders" despite being 3-1 since they beat up the Giants, Jets, and Patriots while laying an egg against the Cardinals.

Beating San Francisco would have proven they belonged, but they were routed 42-10. It was another frustrating showing against a team that's been a bully to them for years. All eyes will again be on the Cowboys when the two meet again.

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It doesn't get easier after that one either, with a road game against the Atlanta Falcons — led now by Kirk Cousins — followed by home games against the Philadelphia Eagles and Houston Texans. All four games could easily end in defeat if the Cowboys aren't careful, with the Atlanta meeting potentially being the ultimate trap game.

Dallas can make up ground with the Commanders and Giants on the slate after that, but if they don't come out of the Week 8-11 stretch looking competitive, it could start an awful downward spiral.

Randy Gurzi


Arizona State grad