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1981 Dallas Cowboys season
Head coach Tom Landry
Home field
Results
Record 12-4
Place 1st NFC East
Playoff finish Lost Conference Championship
Timeline
Previous season Next season
1980 1982

The 1981 Dallas Cowboys season was their 22nd in the league. The team matched their previous output of 12-4.[1] They lost the Conference Championship game for the second straight season.

The season began with four straight victories, followed by two losses (including a surprising 45-14 blowout loss to the 49ers in week six). The Cowboys rebounded to win 8 of their 9 games to clinch the NFC East but had to settle for the conference's number two seed behind the 49ers.

The Cowboys easily defeated Tampa Bay in the divisional playoff to earn a rematch with the 49ers in the NFC Championship Game. The game was much closer this time, and the Cowboys still held a 27-21 lead with less than a minute to play. However, Joe Montana led a late drive and hit Dwight Clark in the famous "Catch" to give San Francisco a 28-27 victory.

Contents

Schedule

Week Date Opponent Result
1 September 6, 1981 at Washington Redskins W 26-10
2 September 13, 1981 St. Louis Cardinals W 30-17
3 September 21, 1981 at New England Patriots W 35-21
4 September 27, 1981 New York Giants W 18-10
5 October 4, 1981 at St. Louis Cardinals L 20-17
6 October 11, 1981 at San Francisco 49ers L 45-14
7 October 18, 1981 Los Angeles Rams W 29-17
8 October 25, 1981 Miami Dolphins W 28-27
9 November 1, 1981 at Philadelphia Eagles W 17-14
10 November 9, 1981 Buffalo Bills W 27-14
11 November 15, 1981 at Detroit Lions L 27-24
12 November 22, 1981 Washington Redskins W 24-10
13 November 26, 1981 Chicago Bears W 10-9
14 December 6, 1981 at Baltimore Colts W 37-13
15 December 13, 1981 Philadelphia Eagles W 21-10
16 December 19, 1981 at New York Giants L 13-10

Playoffs

Week Date Opponent Result
Division January 2, 1982 Tampa Bay Buccaneers W 38-0
Conference January 10, 1982 at San Francisco 49ers L 28-27

Standings

NFC East
W L T PCT PF PA STK
Dallas Cowboys 12 4 0 .750 367 277 L-1
Philadelphia Eagles 10 6 0 .625 368 221 W-1
New York Giants 9 7 0 .563 295 257 W-3
Washington Redskins 8 8 0 .500 347 349 W-3
St. Louis Cardinals 7 9 0 .438 315 408 L-2

References

AFC East Central West East Central West NFC
Baltimore Cincinnati Denver Dallas Chicago Atlanta
Buffalo Cleveland Kansas City NY Giants Detroit Los Angeles
Miami Houston Oakland Philadelphia Green Bay New Orleans
New England Pittsburgh San Diego St. Louis Minnesota San Francisco
NY Jets Seattle Washington Tampa Bay
1981 NFL DraftNFL PlayoffsPro BowlSuper Bowl XVI
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