Dallas Cowboys should embrace villain status if they’re the only NFC team allowed to have fans

Jerry Jones, Dallas Cowboys. (Photo by Tom Pennington/Getty Images)
Jerry Jones, Dallas Cowboys. (Photo by Tom Pennington/Getty Images) /

The Cowboys can take special advantage of a recent decision by Texas Governor Greg Abbott.

No matter what the NFL looks like in 2020 — assuming games can actually be played at all! — this season is going to stand out as a strange kind of outlier forever. Perhaps the most bizarre component in store for us? Stadiums meant to hold upwards of 70,000 fans that are forced to go eerily empty due to coronavirus restrictions.

Not every stadium is guaranteed to be desolate, however. Texas Governor Gregg Abbott announced this week that sports teams in the Lone Star State will be able to operate their stadiums at 50% capacity — and no one can take fuller advantage of this than the Dallas Cowboys, who can take their status as a hated, envied super-brand to even greater heights.

If the Dallas Cowboys are the only NFC team allowed to play games with fans in attendance this season, they should relish the opportunity to make a heel turn.

Will Dallas Cowboys have an unfair home-field advantage?

The Cowboys don’t win the big one every year, but that hasn’t stopped them from becoming not just the most valuable franchise in the NFL, but the single most valuable in all of global sports, per Forbes. They’re an industry unto themselves. As a commodity, they’re at the sporting mountaintop. As a result, they’re already the most-hated team of plenty of football fans all over.

That only makes this year’s opportunity to embrace the role of supervillain even more attractive. In the annals of “hate us ‘cuz they ain’t us,” this Cowboys season can and should exist in the Pantheon.

Rival teams will have 40,000 reasons to hate Big D even more when the action hits AT&T Stadium. And instead of shying away from their unique status and insisting to critics that the decision was out of their hands, Jerry Jones and Co. need to lean into this.

At the very least, such swaggering bravado can pose as a distraction from the Dak Prescott contract standoff.

At most, it tees up the ultimate victory lap if and when the Boys wrest the NFC East title from the equally prideful Eagles.

This Dallas Cowboys rookie could be a star in 2020. light. More