|1970 Dallas Cowboys season|
|Owner||Clint Murchison, Jr.|
|Head coach||Tom Landry|
|Home field||Cotton Bowl|
|Division place||1st NFC East|
|Playoff finish||Won Divisional playoffs (Lions) 5–0|
Won NFC Championship (at 49ers) 17–10
Lost Super Bowl V (vs. Colts) 16–13
The Cowboys scored 299 points and allowed 221 points. For the fifth consecutive season, the Cowboys finished first in their division. In 1970, the club made its debut on Monday Night Football. The Cowboys lost to the St. Louis Cardinals 38–0. The Cowboys made it to their first Super Bowl and lost to the Baltimore Colts.
|1970 Dallas Cowboys draft|
|1||23||Duane Thomas||RB||West Texas State|
|2||49||Margene Adkins||WR||Henderson County J.C.|
|3||66||Charlie Waters *||S||Clemson|
|3||75||Denton Fox||DB||Texas Tech|
|4||101||John Fitzgerald||C||Boston College|
|7||179||Don Abbey||LB||Penn State|
|13||335||Mark Washington||CB||Morgan State|
|14||361||Julian Martin||WR||North Carolina Central|
|16||413||Seabern Hill||DB||Arizona State|
|Made roster † Pro Football Hall of Fame * Made at least one Pro Bowl during career|
The Cowboys had to overcome many obstacles during the regular season. Fullback Calvin Hill, the team's second leading rusher with 577 yards and 4 touchdowns, was lost for the year after suffering a leg injury late in the regular season. And wide receiver Bob Hayes was benched by head coach Tom Landry for poor performances on several occasions.
Most significantly, the Cowboys had a quarterback controversy between Craig Morton and Roger Staubach. Morton and Staubach alternated as the starting quarterback during the regular season, but Landry eventually chose Morton to start Super Bowl V because he felt less confident that Staubach would follow his game plan (Landry called all of Morton's plays in Super Bowl V). Also, Morton had done extremely well in the regular season, throwing for 1,819 yards and 15 touchdowns, with seven interceptions, earning him a passer rating of 89.8. In contrast, Staubach, although a noted scrambler and able to salvage broken plays effectively, threw for 542 yards, and only two touchdowns with eight interceptions, giving him a 42.9 rating.
Hayes was the main deep threat on the team, catching 34 passes for 889 yards (a 26.1 yards per catch average) and 10 touchdowns, while also rushing 4 times for 34 yards and another touchdown, and adding another 116 yards returning punts. On the other side of the field, wide receiver Lance Rentzel recorded 28 receptions for 556 yards and 5 touchdowns.
However, the main strength on the Cowboys offense was their running game. Rookie running back Duane Thomas rushed 151 times for 803 yards (a 5.1 yards per carry average) and 5 touchdowns, while adding another 416 yards returning kickoffs. Fullback Walt Garrison, who replaced the injured Hill, provided Thomas with excellent blocking and rushed for 507 yards and 3 touchdowns himself. Garrison was also a good receiver out of the backfield, catching 21 passes for 205 yards and 2 touchdowns. Up front, Pro Bowl guard John Niland and future Hall of Famer tackle Rayfield Wright anchored the offensive line.
The Cowboys had their lowest regular season (6–2 vs. Cleveland Browns) and playoff (5–0 vs. Detroit Lions) scoring games in franchise history. The playoff victory over Detroit on December 26 remains the lowest scoring postseason game in NFL history. Through the 2018 season, they are the only games to finish with those scores.
For the first time, the Cowboys defeated the Green Bay Packers; this year's game was on Thanksgiving on the new artificial turf of the Cotton Bowl. Green Bay had won the first six contests, four in the regular season (1960, 1964, 1965, 1968) and two in NFL championship games (1966, 1967). The Packers won the next meeting in Green Bay in 1972.
|1||September 20||at Philadelphia Eagles||W 17–7||1–0||Franklin Field||59,728||Recap|
|2||September 27||New York Giants||W 28–10||2–0||Cotton Bowl||57,236||Recap|
|3||October 4||at St. Louis Cardinals||L 7–20||2–1||Busch Memorial Stadium||50,780||Recap|
|4||October 11||Atlanta Falcons||W 13–0||3–1||Cotton Bowl||53,611||Recap|
|5||October 18||at Minnesota Vikings||L 13–54||3–2||Metropolitan Stadium||47,900||Recap|
|6||October 25||at Kansas City Chiefs||W 27–16||4–2||Municipal Stadium||51,158||Recap|
|7||November 1||Philadelphia Eagles||W 21–17||5–2||Cotton Bowl||55,736||Recap|
|8||November 8||at New York Giants||L 20–23||5–3||Yankee Stadium||62,938||Recap|
|9||St. Louis Cardinals||L 0–38||5–4||Cotton Bowl||69,323||Recap|
|10||November 22||at Washington Redskins||W 45–21||6–4||RFK Stadium||50,415||Recap|
|11||November 26||Green Bay Packers||W 16–3||7–4||Cotton Bowl||67,182||Recap|
|12||December 6||Washington Redskins||W 34–0||8–4||Cotton Bowl||57,936||Recap|
|13||at Cleveland Browns||W 6–2||9–4||Cleveland Stadium||75,458||Recap|
|14||December 20||Houston Oilers||W 52–10||10–4||Cotton Bowl||50,504||Recap|
Division opponents are in bold text
|New York Giants||9||5||0||.643||6–2||6–5||301||270||L1|
|St. Louis Cardinals||8||5||1||.615||5–3||6–5||325||228||L3|
Note: Tie games were not officially counted in the standings until 1972.
|Divisional||Detroit Lions||W 5–0||Cotton Bowl||69,613||Recap|
|NFC Championship||January 3, 1971||at San Francisco 49ers||W 17–10||Kezar Stadium||59,364||Recap|
|Super Bowl||January 17, 1971||vs Baltimore Colts||L 13–16||Orange Bowl||79,204||Recap|
NFC Divisional Playoff
NFC Championship Game
Super Bowl V
Chuck Howley became the first defensive player, and only member of a losing team to be the Super Bowl's Most Valuable Player.
|Dallas Cowboys 1970 roster|
Rookies in italics
Awards and records
- Chuck Howley, Most Valuable Player, Super Bowl V
- Mel Renfro, Pro Bowl Defensive Most Valuable Player
- Bill McGrane (1990). "A Mad, Mad, Mad Super Bowl," The Super Bowl: Celebrating a Quarter-Century of America's Greatest Game. Simon and Schuster. ISBN 0-671-72798-2.
- Lea, Bud (November 27, 1970). "Cowboys end Packer jinx, 16-3". Milwaukee Sentinel. p. 1, part 2.
- Lea, Bud (October 2, 1972). "Patched up Pack jolts Dallas". Milwaukee Sentinel. p. 1, part 2.
- "Dallas Cowboys at Philadelphia Eagles - September 20th, 1970". Pro-Football-Reference.com. Retrieved September 15, 2019.
- "New York Giants at Dallas Cowboys - September 27th, 1970". Pro-Football-Reference.com. Retrieved September 15, 2019.