Breaking News
More () »

Cowboys 100: Facts and stats ahead of big NFC showdown against Arizona

Arizona (10-5) has been reeling of late as they’ve lost three in a row and five out of their last eight games after beginning the season 7-0.
Credit: AP
Dallas Cowboys quarterback Dak Prescott (4) celebrates a touchdown during an NFL football game against the Atlanta Falcons, Sunday, Nov. 14, 2021, in Arlington, Texas. (AP Photo/Matt Patterson)

DALLAS — Fresh off claiming a division title last weekend, the Dallas Cowboys (11-4) will look to extend their unbeaten December into the new year as they welcome the Arizona Cardinals to Arlington on Sunday with NFC playoff seeding at stake.

The Cowboys emphatically booked themselves at least one home playoff game with a 56-14 drubbing of the rival Washington Football Team in Week 16. The victory was the fourth in a row for Dallas and gave the NFC East champions a shot at the conference’s top seed if they finish out strong and get some help.

Meanwhile, Arizona (10-5) has been reeling of late as they’ve lost three in a row and five out of their last eight games after beginning the season 7-0. The Cardinals most recently fell 22-16 to the Indianapolis Colts in a Week 16 loss that dropped them to second place in the NFC West behind the Los Angeles Rams.

With that in mind, here are 100 facts and stats as the Cowboys aim to keep pace with the rest of the NFC contenders in Week 17:


-The Cowboys are 11-4 for the sixth time in team history. Here are the final fates for the other five teams:

  • Lost divisional: 2014

  • Lost conference: 1980

  • Lost Super Bowl: 1978

  • Won Super Bowl: 1993, 1995

-Since 1990, all 65 teams that started 12-4 made the playoffs. 50 of those 65 teams won the division.

-Since 1990, all 82 teams that started 11-5 made the playoffs. 44 of those 82 teams won the division.

-The Cardinals are 10-5 for the third time in team history. The other times were 2009 and 2013. Only the 2009 team made the playoffs and they did so by winning the division.

-Since 1990, 86 of the 98 that started 10-6 made the playoffs with 38 of those 86 teams having won the division.

-The Cowboys are 32-12 against the Cardinals at home. Here are the results broken down by venue:

  • Cotton Bowl: 4-5

  • Texas Stadium: 27-5

  • AT&T Stadium: 0-2

-The Cowboys are 0-1 against the Cardinals in January. The lone game they played was the 1998 NFC Wildcard when the Cardinals beat them 20-7 at Texas Stadium on Jan. 2, 1999.

-The Cardinals are one of six teams, and the only team from the NFC, to be undefeated at AT&T Stadium.

-The Cardinals are one of four teams that have remained undefeated against Dallas in postseason play. The other three teams are Carolina, Washington, and the Colts.

-Since 1970, the Cowboys are 174-130 in late afternoon games with a 112-61 record at home.

-Since 1988, the Cardinals are 156-163-1 in the late afternoon time slot, including the playoffs, with a 33-60 record on the road.

-The Cowboys are 4-3 in their Color Rush jerseys.


-Prescott is 4-1 in the Color Rush jerseys with a 3-0 record at AT&T Stadium.

-Prescott has thrown the league’s ninth-most passing touchdowns with 29.

-Prescott’s 1.9% interception percentage is tied with Daniel Jones for the ninth-lowest in the NFL.

-Prescott is tied for the 10th-highest yards per pass attempt at 7.4.

-Prescott’s 280.6 passing yards per game are the sixth-highest in the NFL.

-Prescott’s 4,178 intended air yards are the ninth-highest in the NFL.

-Prescott’s 2,100 completed air yards are the eighth-highest in the league.

-Prescott has benefited from 1,828 yards after the catch, the eighth-most in the NFL.

-No one has been blitzed more than Prescott at 164 blitzes.

-Prescott has been pressured on 19.3% of his dropbacks, the sixth-fewest in the league.

-Prescott’s 5.0% sack percentage is the eighth-lowest in the league.

-Prescott is tied for the 10th-shortest time in the pocket at 2.4 seconds.

-Prescott has had 25 of his passes dropped, tied with Derek Carr for the eighth-most in the league.

-Prescott has thrown 107 play-action passes, tied with Kirk Cousins for the ninth-most in the league.

-Prescott’s 100.5 passer rating is tied with Kyler Murray for the fifth-highest in the NFL.


-Murray, a former Allen Eagle, is making his second start in AT&T Stadium. Here is how other former Texas High School Football quarterbacks have fared in AT&T Stadium:

  • 2010 — Vince Young: 1-0

  • 2010-18 — Drew Brees: 2-2

  • 2011-18 — Matthew Stafford: 1-3

  • 2012-13 — Nick Foles: 1-1

  • 2012-13 — Robert Griffin: 1-1

  • 2013 — Christian Ponder: 0-1

  • 2013 — Matt Flynn: 1-0

  • 2014 — Andrew Luck: 0-1

  • 2014-18 — Colt McCoy: 1-1

  • 2016-20 — Andy Dalton: 2-3*

  • 2020 — Baker Mayfield: 1-0

  • 2020 — Kyler Murray: 1-0

  • 2020 — Garrett Gilbert: 0-1*

  • 2020 — Jalen Hurts: 0-2

*includes total as a Cowboys starter

-Murray is tied with Matthew Stafford for the third-highest yards per pass attempt at 8.1.

-Murray is tied with Jalen Hurts for the fifth-highest yards per completion at 11.8.

-Murray throws for 273.7 passing yards per game, the eighth-highest in the NFL.

-Murray is tied for the 10th-highest intended air yards this season at 8.0.

-Murray is tied with Hurts and Kirk Cousins for the eighth-highest completed air yards per completion at 6.2.

-Murray is tied with Josh Allen for the fifth-highest completed air yards per pass attempt at 4.3.

-Murray’s receivers are tied with Hurts’ for the sixth-most yards after the catch with 5.6.

-Murray’s targets are tied with those of Russell Wilson for the fifth-most passes dropped at 3.6%.

-Murray is in the pocket for the fifth-shortest amount of time at 2.3 seconds.

-Murray has been pressured on 20.5% of his dropbacks, the eighth-lowest in the NFL.

-Murray has scrambled out of 25 throws, the ninth-most in the NFL.

-Among quarterbacks with at least 20 scrambles, Murray is tied with Hurts and Justin Herbert for the third-highest yards per scramble at 8.1.

-Murray has thrown 68 times out of run-pass option, the sixth-most in the NFL.

-Murray’s 597 passing yards out of run-pass option are the fourth-most in the league.

-Murray is tied with Josh Allen for the fourth-most runs out of run-pass option with 25.

-Murray is 1 of 28 QBs this season with at least one game-winning drive and a fourth quarter comeback.


-Elliott has 899 rushing yards, the seventh-most in the NFL.

-Elliott has picked up 505 yards before contact, the sixth-most in the NFL.

-Elliott is tied with Derrick Henry, Austin Ekeler, and Jalen Hurts for the fifth-most rushing touchdowns with 10.

-All 10 of Elliott’s touchdowns have come inside the red zone, tied with Damien Harris and Ekeler for the fourth-most in the NFL.

-Elliott is tied with James Conner for the second-most rushing yards in the red zone with 121.

-Among running backs with at least 200 carries, Elliott is tied with Henry for the fourth-most yards per carry in the league with 4.3.

-Elliott has taken 24 carries on third down, the seventh-most in the NFL.

-Elliott has picked up 109 yards on third down, the ninth-most in the NFL.

-Elliott is tied with Harris, Boston Scott, Ryan Tannehill, and Taysom Hill for the most rushing touchdowns on third down with three.

-Elliott has picked up 16 third down conversions on the ground, tied with Antonio Gibson for the fourth-most in the NFL.


-This is the 72nd week that a McCarthy coached team has held undisputed first place in the division and his 14th with the Cowboys.

-The Cardinals were the team that got McCarthy fired with four games to go in the 2018 season. Arizona beat Green Bay 20-17 at Lambeau Field on Dec. 2, 2018 in McCarthy’s final game with the Packers.

-As a Cowboys coach, McCarthy is 0-1 against the Cardinals. Here is how other Cowboys head coaches have fared against the Cardinals:

  • Tom Landry: 33-19-1

  • Jimmy Johnson: 7-3

  • Barry Switzer: 7-1

  • Bill Parcells: 3-0

  • Chan Gailey: 3-2

  • Dave Campo: 2-3

  • Wade Phillips: 0-1

  • Jason Garrett: 1-3

-McCarthy is 3-5 overall against the Cardinals as head coach, including the playoffs, with a 2-2 record at home.

-McCarthy is 20-16 against the NFC West with a 13-5 record at home.

-McCarthy’s 20-16 record against the NFC West is his third-best against a particular NFC division:

  • NFC North: 55-25-2

  • NFC East: 27-16

  • NFC West: 20-16

  • NFC South: 16-15


-With a win last year over Dallas, Kingsbury joined Pop Ivy (1960), Ray Willsey (1961), Ray Prochaska (1961), Chuck Drulis (1961), Wally Lemm (1962), Joe Bugel (1990), Dave McGinnis (2000), Ken Whisenhunt (2008), and Bruce Arians (2014) as the only Cardinals coaches to defeat the Cowboys in their first try.

-Kingsbury is 4-0 against the NFC East with a 2-0 record on the road.

-Kingsbury is 1-4 in prime time. His only win was last year in Week 6 on Monday Night Football against the Cowboys.

-Kingsbury is 3-1 in the Central Time Zone.

-Kingsbury is the third coach in franchise history to lead the Cardinals to a 10-5 record. The other two coaches are Whisenhunt (2009) and Arians (2014).

-Kingsbury is 3 for 9 on challenges for his career with an 0 for 2 rate in 2021.


-This is the 21st game in the series to be broadcast on FOX. Here is the breakdown by network:

  • CBS: 56

  • FOX: 20

  • ABC: 7

  • ESPN: 3

  • TNT: 3

  • NFL Network: 1

-Joe Buck and Troy Aikman are the 68th different commentator pairing to do a game in the series. Their last call was on Nov. 2, 2014, in a 28-17 loss at AT&T Stadium.

-The Cowboys are 44-51 when Buck does play-by-play for their games.

-Dallas is 50-57 when Aikman does commentary for their games.

-The first Cowboys game that Pat Summerall and John Madden called together on CBS was on Oct. 4, 1981, when Dallas visited the St. Louis Cardinals, who prevailed 20-17.

-The Oct. 4, 1965 game between the Cowboys and Cardinals was actually a Monday night game on CBS, and it was not joined in progress until 9:50 p.m. on KRLD-TV due to Pope Paul VI’s mass at Yankee Stadium.


-This week’s referee is Scott Novak. The Cowboys are 1-1 with Novak’s crew making the calls:

2019 – @NE, 9-13 – L

2021 – @MIN, 20-16 – W

-The Cowboys have had fewer penalty yards once in two games with Novak:

  • 2019 – NE: 6/56; DAL: 7/50

  • 2021 – MIN: 7/57; DAL: 11/96

-Novak is tied for the second-lowest (.429) home team winning percentage.

-Novak is tied for the seventh-lowest percentage (.500) of home teams with fewer penalties.

-The Cardinals are 0-1-1 with Novak:

  • 2019 – DET, 27-27 – T

  • 2020 – DET, 23-26 – L

-The Cardinals have had fewer penalty yards in each game with Novak:

  • 2019 – DET: 9/59; CRD: 7/35

  • 2020 – DET: 7/46; CRD: 7/38

-Novak’s games are tied for the sixth-highest sacks (4.8) per game.

-Novak calls the eighth-most offensive holding calls (2.7) per game.

-The Cowboys have yet to challenge Novak, and the same goes for opponents. Replay Assistant is 2/2 with one of those calls benefiting the Cowboys.

-The Cardinals are 0/1 challenging Novak. Opponents have yet to challenge Novak. Replay Assistant is 1/4.

-Novak has the fourth-highest (4 for 7, .571) coaches challenge overturn rate.

-Novak is tied for the fifth-highest (6 of 10, .600) booth review overturn rate.


-The Cowboys lead the NFL with 33 takeaways.

-The Cardinals are tied with the Houston Texans for the eighth-most takeaways with 24.

-The Cowboys have generated 169 pressures, the third-most in the NFL.

-The Cardinals have generated 39 sacks, the ninth-most in the league.

-The Cowboys are tied with the Tennessee Titans and Cleveland Browns for the 10th-most sacks in the league with 37.

-The Cardinals have blitzed 181 times, the fourth-most in the league.

-The Cowboys have given up 2,058 yards after the catch, the third-most in the NFL.

-The Cardinals have generated 71 tackles for loss, tied with the Texans for the eighth-most in the league.

-The Cowboys have produced 103 quarterback hits, the third-most in the NFL.

-Opposing quarterbacks have produced a 74.1 passer rating against the Dallas defense, the third-lowest in the NFL.

-The Cardinals have the eighth-highest red zone conversion rate at 62.1%.

-The Cardinals have the ninth-best average starting field position at their own 29.6-yard line.

-The Cowboys and Cardinals are tied with the Patriots and Jets for the eighth-highest rushing yards per carry at 4.5.

-The Cowboys are 5-2 on Jan. 2:

  • 1971* – SF, 14-3 – W

  • 1981* – TB, 38-0 – W

  • 1993 – @NYG, 16-13 – W-OT

  • 1998* – CRD, 7-20 – L

  • 1999 – NYG, 26-18 – W

  • 2004 – @NYG, 24-28 – L

  • 2010 – @PHI, 14-13 – W


-The Cardinals are 3-3 on Jan. 2:

  • 1982* – @WAS, 0-28 – L

  • 1993 – @ATL, 27-10 – W

  • 1998* – @DAL, 20-7 – W

  • 1999 – @GB, 24-49 – L

  • 2004 – TB, 12-7 – W

  • 2010 – @SF, 7-38 – L


-The Cowboys have two birthdays to celebrate on Jan. 2:

  • 1947 – Calvin Hill, RB, 1969-74

  • 1995 – Jordan Chunn, RB, 2019

Do you think the Cowboys will pick up the 57th win all-time against the Cardinals? Share your predictions with Mark on Twitter @therealmarklane.

Before You Leave, Check This Out