The Dallas Cowboys are known as “America’s Team” because they have packs of fans in all 50 states and abroad. There are so many Cowboys that just about each state has its own Cowboys fan club. I can confirm this firsthand because I belong to one in a state outside of Texas.
Besides the New York Yankees and possibly the Duke Blue Devils, there is no other sports franchise as loved and hated as the Cowboys. I mean it doesn’t even come close. Part of the reason for the Cowboys hatred stems from the Cowboys rabid fan base, who truly believe they’re going to win the Super Bowl every single, solitary year-regardless of the talent or who is under center.
But if you think the love/hate relationship is just between the Cowboys’ haters and media, well, it’s even worse within their own fan base. To put this bluntly, there is a serious case of Dr. Jekyll and Mr. Hyde of Cowboys Nation and their fandom for the Cowboys.
The Dallas Cowboys fan base has a strange case of Dr. Jekyll and Mr. Hyde when it comes to supporting this historic franchise.
I’m not sports psychologist by any stretch, but I’m a big time fan of this team. I see the chaos of emotions every single day. So I’m going to have a little fun and point out this serious case of Dr. Jekyll and Mr. Hyde of America’s Team. Let’s go!
The Dr. Jekyll of the Cowboys Nation-Super Bowl winning fans
From the mid 1960’s all the way to 1995, Dallas won five Super Bowls, had eight Super Bowl appearances, appeared in several NFC championship games, won over a dozen NFC East crowns, and literally had a winning record against every team in the entire NFL.
This is where the Dallas fan base was at its zenith. Sure, there were some lean, losing years towards the end of the Tom Landry era to the transition to the Jimmy Johnson era, (1986-1990 were losing seasons) but the fan base were on the same page when it came to this historic franchise.
All of the fans believed Landry was the best coach ever, the hole in the roof in Cowboys stadium symbolized that God wanted to see His favorite team play on Sundays, Hall of Famers Roger Staubach, Tony Dorsett, Drew Pearson, Randy White, and others were the best to ever do it. During these years, it was expected for Dallas to win every game, and the fans believed all of the aforementioned players were without criticism.
True fact: The Dallas teams of the 1970’s were a wild and talented bunch known for having wild parties, doing drugs, and basically getting away with anything. A movie tilted “North Dallas Forty” was loosely based off the Dallas Cowboys. Oops!
Criticism of America’s Team from the fan base was rare because…well all they did was win. Losing wasn’t an option. Heck, even when Dallas lost two closely contested Super Bowls to their nemesis (the Pittsburgh Steelers) back in the 70s, the fan base still believed in their team, and didn’t even place the blame on Landry or the players.
Even though Hall of Famer wide receiver Jackie Smith dropped a game-winning touchdown pass against the Steelers in Super Bowl XIII, Dallas’ fans viewed it as an unfortunate incident and would return to their rightful place at the Super Bowl the following year (which they didn’t.) This mindset continued well into the 80’s, even as Landry struggled to recapture his Super Bowl-winning ways.
Dallas’ fans, myself included, believed that Dallas would return to its glory years and win more Super Bowls. And they did, shortly after Johnson snagged a boatload of pics for running back Herschel Walker.
Although Johnson’s first two years were a struggle, the fan base came together to the tune of three Super Bowl victories in a four-year span. In 1995, Dallas had won five Super Bowls, had the most Super Bowl appearances in the NFL, and had more playoff wins than any other team.
All of those accolades added equity for the fan base to talk trash, increase expectations, and quite simply, agree with each other because of all the winning.
This is the apex of Dr. Jekyll phase where the fan base are super delusional about Dallas winning Super Bowls on the regular because the team is ultra-talented, the coaching is superb and beyond reproach, the owner is the best (Bum Bright and Jerry Jones), and fans don’t even argue with each other because they simply see this team through rose-colored glasses.
The ironic part about this phase is that Dallas’ fans believe everyone else should believe in their team like they do wholeheartedly. It’s similar to a two-year old telling their parents they didn’t eat the chocolate cookies, but the toddler’s face is covered in chocolate chips.
Denial is powerful to the fan base in this phase, which can be found in the next phase, too.
Mr. Hyde: The comically unsatisfied and hyper-critical fan.
Plain and simple, this is the fan base that’s comical at its core because it longs for another Super Bowl. But they are consumed by their own criticism that they cannot acknowledge any of the good things. As a result, it lashes out at the good things this franchise has done to get back to the top.
The first example is the signing of franchise quarterback Dak Prescott to a long-term contract that makes him the highest paid signal caller in the league. Half of Dallas fan base believe Dak has proven himself and deserves every dollar and then some. They truly believe that Dak can lead Dallas to another Super Bowl and is worthy of being labeled a top-10 quarterback.
The other half of Dallas’ fan base believe Dak is overrated and can’t win the big games. They think he needs to lean on Ezekiel Elliott. That he can’t make the receivers better, he build up stats in garbage time, he can’t read defenses, he should still be the backup to Tony Romo, and he’s the primary reason why men lose their hairlines at an early age.
Regardless of how objective a fellow fan will be in defending Dak, this negative bunch will come back with one of the aforementioned reasons to why Dak is overrated. This group is so mad that it doesn’t even realize how Dak has improved every season and corrected the majority of his flaws. From supposedly not being able to read defenses to his deep ball accuracy, stats prove otherwise and Dak is on pace to do major damage as a quarterback this season.
This group of fans doesn’t want to hear about Dak’s improvements because in their minds, the standard barrier for a quarterback is Patrick Mahomes, the Grinch from Green Bay (Aaron Rodgers), Tom Brady, Lamar Jackson, and Jesus Christ himself. Anything less than them is unacceptable.
Some of these fans blame Dak for the defense being one of the worse in the league. They really believe Dak plays defense. You cannot make this stuff up.
The same goes for second-year head coach Mike McCarthy. Never mind that Coach Mac is a Super Bowl-winning coach who has coached two of the best signal callers in NFL history, this group believes Coach Mac can’t coach and blames last season’s debacle on his shoulders.
Remember, Dak was lost to a season-ending ankle injury, but somehow Coach Mac is supposed to win 11 games without his star quarterback, a banged up offensive line, while fielding the worst defense in franchise history.
Oh, this group doesn’t give Coach Mac credit for winning a Super Bowl in Green Bay because…wait for it…he had Rodgers as his quarterback. In other words (in their mindset), Coach Mac doesn’t deserve any credit for the Super Bowl victory because of the greatness of Rodgers.
Wow! You have to be kidding me.
Not only that but since Coach Mac was ousted because of his relationship with Rodgers, this group believes he’s more of a loser than a winner- not a Super Bowl winning coach. See, this group makes up more excuses on why NOT to see the positivity in the successes of Dak and Coach Mac.
The criticism isn’t just for the offensive stars, It lends itself to the defense, too. Pass rusher DeMarcus Lawrence takes the majority of the blows for the defense. For sake of argument, ditto Jaylon Smith and Leighton Vander Esch. This is about star players!
D-Law is a beast and the impartial film-watchers, PFF (Pro Football Focus) confirms, but since D-Law had low sack numbers, the Mr. Hyde segment of Cowboys Nation considers him a failure. They believe D-Law is supposed to tally 15 plus sacks, force a dozen fumbles, and get 80 tackles for a loss in order to be worthy of his huge contract.
Whenever there is a great player, they pop up to criticize. And that’s because this group doesn’t believe in rebuilding or realize that it takes time to build a consistent Super Bowl winning team. The only thing this group can agree on is that owner Jerry Jones is the sole reason for Dallas’ Super Bowl drought.
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I wrote this article because I wanted to have some fun on how Cowboys Nation acts on a daily basis. I’m on Twitter everyday, and I realize that there is no in between with this fan base. You either believe positively/objectively of this franchise or you see it negatively.
If you need proof, just read the comment section on any article written by the writers of Sportdfw and you’ll get a better understanding and reality check of the Dr. Jekyll and Mr. Hyde spectrum of this fantastic fan base. I absolutely reading the comments…LOL
I’ve been a Dallas fan since I was four years old and can tell you everything to know about this storied franchise. I remember the glorious Super Bowl wins along with the painful losses.
But I enjoy being a fan even more and having the grand opportunity to joke around with my fellow Dallas fans who want nothing more than a chance to witness American’s Team win another Super Bowl. Regardless of the criticism! BOOM!