Dallas Cowboys Are on Their Worst Streak for Points Allowed in Franchise History

There was precious little to be thankful for on Thanksgiving Day as far as the Dallas Cowboys were concerned. An NFC East matchup with potential crucial ramifications in the playoffs race ended with the Cowboys suffering a humiliating 41-16 shellacking in front of their fans against the Washington Football Team, marking Dallas' second consecutive loss on Turkey Day and the third in the last four years.

The Cowboys dropped to 3-8 with the loss and are now rock-bottom of the NFC East, while Washington improved to 4-7 and took control of the division at least until Sunday, when the 3-7 New York Giants take on the Cincinnati Bengals, before the 3-6-1 Philadelphia Eagles host the Seattle Seahawks on Monday Night Football.

The Cowboys arrived into Thanksgiving on the back of a much-needed 31-28 win in Minnesota last week, but the feel-good factor swiftly evaporated. Dallas hung in the game for three quarters and trailed by four points ahead of the final period, only to be outscored 21-0 in the fourth quarter.

Dallas has now conceded at least 20 points in each of its 11 games this season, the longest such streak in franchise history, as per NFL Research.

The Cowboys have allowed at least 20 points in all 11 games this season.

That surpasses a pair of 10-game streaks (2013-2014, and 1962-1963) as the new longest streak of allowing 20+ points in Cowboys franchise history.

— NFL Research (@NFLResearch) November 27, 2020

Up until this season, Dallas had allowed opponents to score at least 20 points for 10 consecutive games just twice in its history and never in a single-season—the Cowboys first streak spanned the final nine games of the 1963 season and the opener the following year, while the second streak began in Week 8 of the 2013 season and ended in Week 2 of the following season.

To make matters even worse, Washington hadn't scored more than 27 points so far this season—managing the feat in Week 1 against the Eagles and in Week 10 against the Detroit Lions—and had last put up 40 or more points in Week 16 of the 2016 season.

Even more chastening for Dallas, Washington arrived into the game with an offense ranked 29th out of 32 NFL teams in terms of points scored, 28th in total yards and 27th in average yards and average points per drive.

While hardly stellar, on Thursday night Washington offense was extremely efficient, racking up 338 yards of total offense, which included 182 rushing yards as Antonio Gibson became the first rookie since 1948 to score three rushing touchdowns on Thanksgiving.

The Football Team converted seven of his 13 third-downs and two his four red zone trips returned points and scored a defensive touchdown when defensive end Montez Sweat intercepted a pass from Andy Dalton and returned it for a 15-yard touchdown in the fourth quarter.

However, such is the dismal state of the NFC East that the loss did not end the Cowboys' playoffs hopes.

While Washington is currently on a two-game winning streak, it has the eighth-hardest remaining schedule in the NFL—as calculated by their opponents' combined winning percentage so far this season.

The Football Team faces back-to-back road games against the Pittsburgh Steelers—who are the only team left undefeated in the NFL this season—and the San Francisco 49ers, followed by home games against the Seattle Seahawks and Carolina Panthers and a trip to Philadelphia in Week 17.

Dallas, on the other hand, has the second-easiest remaining schedule in the NFL with games against the Giants and the Eagles, plus the Cincinnati Bengals, who have just lost Joe Burrow for the season to an ACL injury, and the 49ers.

The 6-4 Ravens, who the Cowboys face on the road in Week 13, are the only team with a winning record left on the schedule for Dallas.

The Eagles have the fifth-hardest remaining schedule in the league. Aside from NFC East matchups against Dallas and Washington, they still face trips to Green Bay and Arizona, as well as home games against the Seahawks and the New Orleans Saints.

Meanwhile, four of the Giants' remaining games are against teams in the thick of the playoff race—the Seahawks, Arizona Cardinals, Cleveland Browns and Baltimore Ravens—while the other two are against the Cowboys and the Bengals.

Andy Dalton, Dallas Cowboys
Andy Dalton #14 of the Dallas Cowboys reacts during the third quarter of the game against the Washington Football Team at AT&T Stadium on November 26 in Arlington, Texas. The Cowboys lost 41-16 and fell to 3-8. Tom Pennington/Getty