History and League Success
The Cowboys entered the league as an expansion team in 1960, the same year that the American Football League began play (and also placed a team in Dallas). Though the Cowboys would have far less on-field success (losing all but one game its inaugural season, that being a tie with the New York Giants), they would outlast the AFL team in Dallas, which would relocate and become the Kansas City Chiefs.
For the first three decades the team was led by Tom Landry (a devout Methodist) and, led by quarterback Roger Staubach (a devout Catholic), the team would ultimately play in five Super Bowls, winning two. Overall, the Cowboys have played in eight Super Bowls (second-most behind the New England Patriots), winning five (tied with the San Francisco 49ers for second-most behind the Patriots and the Pittsburgh Steelers). The Cowboys and Steelers have the distinction of being the only teams to face each other in three different Super Bowls.
Notwithstanding that the team has not been to the Super Bowl in a quarter-century, financially it is annually among the most valuable sports franchises, of all types, in the world.
In 1970, Texas historian Robert A. Calvert co-authored with Donald E. Chipman and Randolph B. Campbell The Dallas Cowboys and the NFL, an inside study of the organization and financing of the team. The book covers only the first nine years of the Cowboys.
NFC East Rivals
- New York Giants
- Philadelphia Eagles
- Washington Football Team (Dallas' rivalry with Washington is considered among the tops of all NFL rivalries)
- Book review of The Dallas Cowboys and the NFL by Robert A. Calvert, Donald E. Chipman, and Randolph Campbell (1979) in jstor.org., accessed October 15, 2010; material no longer on-line.