After the Dallas Texans folded in 1952, there had not been an NFL (National Football League) team south of Washington DC. In 1960, however, the Dallas Cowboys debuted in the NFL as an expansion team and played in the East Division of the National Football Conference (NFC). Headquartered in Valley Ranch in Irving, Texas, the team plays its home games at the AT&T Stadium in Arlington, Texas. To this day, the Cowboys have gone a long way from being an expansion team. Not only does the franchise share the record of most Super Bowl appearances (with Pittsburgh Steelers), they are also the only NFL team to record 20 straight winning seasons that is yet to be challenged and defeated. With an estimated value of approximately $3.2 billion, the Cowboys are the most valuable team in the NFL and tied at 2nd with FC Barcelona for most valuable sports team in the world.The Dallas Cowboys is currently owned by Jerry Jones and coached by Jason Garrett who was also a former football player.
The Dallas Cowboys has on their belt 5 League Championships on the Super Bowl (1971, 1977, 1992, 1993 and 1995), 10 Conference Championships – 2 from NFL Eastern and 8 from NFC, and 21 Division Championships – 3 from NFL Capitol and 18 from NFC East, together with a total of 30 NFL Playoffs Appearances. Indeed, the Dallas Cowboys have already gone a long way, but they would not be where they are right now without the various players of the time. The following are the top 10 players in the Dallas Cowboys History
10. Mel Renfro
Melvin Lacy Renfro was a two way-football player, an All-American halfback and defensive back when he was still attending the University of Oregon in his collegiate years. He also earned All-Pacific Conference recognition three times and was one of the only two-time All-American in university history. Renfro was drafted by the Dallas Cowboys in the second round of the 1964 NFL Draft. After playing for 14 seasons, he has played 174 games and had 52 intercepts and 3 touchdowns. In the 1970 NFC Championship Game, Renfro had a key interception which helped lead his team to Super Bowl V. He joined the Dallas Cowboys Ring of Honor in 1991 and was elected to the Pro Football Hall of Fame in 1996.
9. Bob Hayes
Robert Lee Hayes was a wide receiver in the NFL. Aside from being a football player, Hayes is also an Olympics gold medallist in Athletics. He was drafted by the Dallas Cowboys in the seventh-round of the 1964 NFL Draft. Hayes was the second player in franchise history to exceed 1,000 years which he was able to do in his rookie year. He was a three-time Pro Bowler and was also a three-time All-Pro. He was also a player of the team when they won the NFC Championship in 1970 and 1971. In 2001, he was inducted to the Dallas Ring of Honor and was eventually inducted to the Pro Football Hall of Fame in 2009.
8. Rayfield Wright
Larry Rayfield Wright was an offensive tackle, but was drafted by the Dallas Cowboys in the seventh round of the 1967 NFL Draft as a tight end. Wright was a six-time Pro Bowler and a six-time All Pro. He was also part of the winning team in the Pro Bowl Championship in 1972 and 1978. He was also declared the 1972 NFLPA NFC Offensive-lineman of the Year. Wright became a member of the 1970s NFL All-Decade Team and was inducted into the Dallas Cowboys Ring of Honor in 2004 and into the Texas Sports Hall of Fame in 2005.
7. Randy White
Randall Lee White was a defensive tackle drafted by the Dallas Cowboys in the 1975 NFL Draft as the franchise’s first pick. He was a nine-time Pro-Bowler as well as a nine-time First-Team All-Pro. He was a member of the NFC Championship winning team in 1975, 1977, and 1978 and the Super Bowl in 1978 where he became a co-Super Bowl MVP. In 1974, he received the Outland Trophy and the Lombardi Award and became the UPI Lineman of the Year. White was inducted in the Dallas Cowboys Ring of Honor in 2004 and into the Pro Football Hall of Fame in 1994.
6. Tony Dorsett
Anthony Drew Dorsett was a running back drafted by the Dallas Cowboys in the first round of the 1977 NFL Draft. In the same year, he was named the NFL Offensive Rookie of the Year. Dorsett was a four-time Pro Bowler and a three-time All-Pro. He was also five-time All-NFC. Along with the preceding players, Dorsett was part of the winning team in the NFC Championship in 1977 and 1978, and the Super Bowl Championship in 1978. To this day, he holds the NFL record of longest rushing play (99 yards) and the eight-leading rusher of all-time. In 1994, he was inducted into the Pro Football Hall of Fame, College Football Hall of Fame, as well as the Texas Stadium Ring of Honor and the Dallas Cowboys Ring of Honor.
5. Michael Irvin
Michael Jerome Irvin was a wide receiver drafted by the Dallas Cowboys in the first round of the 1988 NFL Draft. He was named the Pro Bowl MVP in his first play in the Pro Bowl 1991 and continued to be a Pro Bowler for the next four years. He was also a three-time All-Pro and a member of the winning team in the Pro Bowl Championship in 1993, 1994 and 1996. His team also won the NFC Championship in 1992, 1993, and 1995. In 1995, he made the NFL single season record of eleven 100-yard games. He was inducted to the Dallas Cowboys Ring of Honor in 2005 and into the Pro Football Hall of Fame in 2007.
4. Bob Lilly
Robert Lewis Lilly originally started as a defensive end but midway through his career, he was moved to the position of defensive tackle. He Debuted with the Dallas Cowboys in 1961 and ended his career with the same team in 1974. He was an eleven-time Pro Bowler and with his team winning in the year 1972. In the same game, he made the NFL record of 29-yard sack. He was a nine-time All-Pro and ten-time All-Conference selection. He was not only a member of the 1960s All-Decade team but also of the 1970s All-Decade Team. Lilly was the first inductee of the Dallas Cowboys Ring of Honor and was eventually inducted to the Pro Football Hall of Fame in 1980.
3. Troy Aikman
Troy Kenneth Aikman was a quarterback drafted by the Dallas Cowboys as the number one overall pick in the 1989 NFL Draft. In his collegiate years, Aikman was an All-American and a receiver of the Davey O’Brien Award in 1989. In his professional career, he was Sporting News All-Pro in 1993 and a three-time UPI All-NFC. He was a six-time Pro Bowler, winning 3 championships (1992, 1993, and 1995) and grabbing the MVP award in 1992. In 1996, he was declared Walter Payton Man of the Year. Aikman was inducted into the Dallas Cowboys Ring of Honor in 2005 and into the Pro Football Hall of Fame one year after. In 2008, he was also inducted into the College Football Hall of Fame.
2. Emmitt Smith
Emmitt James Smith, Jr. was a running back drafted by the Dallas Cowboys in the first round of the 1990 NFL Draft. Smith was an eight-time Pro Bowler, with three years as part of the winning team and clinching the title of Pro Bowl MVP in the year 1994. He was also a five-time All-Pro and a six-time All-NFC. Aside from this, he was also a four-time NFL rushing leader which eventually led him to being declared as NFL’s all-time rushing leader, breaking the record made by Walter Payton. He was inducted into the Dallas Cowboys Ring of Honor in 2005 and eventually into the Pro Football Hall of Fame in 2010. To this day, Smith is the holder of the NFL records in career rushing yards, career rushing touchdowns, and career 100-yard rushing games.
1. Roger Staubach
Roger Thomas Staubach was a quarterback drafted by the Dallas Cowboys in the 10th round of the 1964 NFL Draft. Staubach, however, was only able to debut professionally in the year 1969 due to his military commitment. He was a six-time Pro Bowler, winning two Championships, one in the year 1972, where he also received the Pro Bowl MVP award, and the other in 1978. Staubach was also a five-time NFC Champion. In 1971, he received the NFL MVP award and the NFC Player of the Year. He was inducted into the College Football Hall of Fame in 1981, into the Dallas Cowboys Ring of Honor in 1983, and finally into the Pro Football Hall of Fame in 1985.