[Part of this series I am going to write about the times when my teams have severely disappointed me. As sports fans, we dedicate a lot of time and emotion to these events. Being a sports fan in Texas I have had my fair share of devastating losses.]
Anger, disbelief, disappointment, this game fully encapsulates what it is like being a Dallas Cowboys fan. In 2008, week 17, Dallas at Philadelphia. If you win, you are in. Revisiting this game is like a cigarette being put out on my arm. Facing the hated Philadelphia Eagles, the Cowboys walked into a buzz-mill. The Philadelphia crowd at The Linc were charged. Brian Dawkins was leading a chant, everyone in that stadium were going nuts.
I all of a sudden did not feel good about this game. The passionate hate the Eagles have towards the Cowboys is maniacal. They were presented a chance to go to the playoffs and if they win, not only are they beating the Cowboys but they also eliminate them from the playoffs. It was like blood in the water.
The second quarter is when it got ugly. Donovan McNabb lead the Eagles to a touchdown. Next series Tony Romo throws an interception, and the Eagles score a touchdown on that drive. The Cowboys defense stifle the Eagle offense on the next drive and they have to punt. Pacman Jones goes to return the punt but fumbles it right back to the Eagles. There were only 5 seconds left in the half, so the Eagles were able to kick a last-second field goal. 27-3 at halftime.
I was at my older brother’s house watching this game. Anger and disbelief engulfed the room.
“Wade Phillips is a fucking joke”, Steve (my brother) said.
I was working through scenarios of how we were only down 3 touchdowns. Still a whole half left, we could still win. I am an optimistic fan.
The third quarter begins. The Cowboys do a trick play where Romo laterals it to Jason Witten and he throws it to a wide-open Terrell Owens and now they are in the red zone.
“Now we are cooking” a regrettably corny statement by me.
Next play Romo is strip-sacked and the Eagles return it for a touchdown.
Next drive, Romo leads the Cowboys on another good drive. Throws a screen to Marion Barber who tries to run out of bounds. Somehow the Eagles defender strips the ball and the ball magically stays inbounds and the Eagles return for another touchdown. The next drive Romo is flushed out of the pocket and is strip-sacked again.
The score was 44-6. The woman I had previous relations with (my ex), kept me asking to leave. Just kept asking me why I was still watching the game. My cousin Alex came to my defense.
“Leave him alone. This is the last time he is going to be able to see his team until next season”.
That comment spoke to my soul. That’s exactly how I felt. Let me seeth in my disappointment! As a die-hard fan, I will sustain these bruises of heart-ache. When the Cowboys actually win again, it will all be worth it.