49ers 2020 NFL schedule: Rivalry vs. Cowboys renewed in Week 15

Dallas Cowboys offense against the San Francisco 49ers defense (Photo by Christian Petersen/Getty Images)
Dallas Cowboys offense against the San Francisco 49ers defense (Photo by Christian Petersen/Getty Images) /

It’s been a while since both the San Francisco 49ers and Dallas Cowboys were expected to be good. In 2020, however, the Niners and Cowboys figure to renew their historic rivalry once more.

The San Francisco 49ers hold a 15-13-1 regular-season record against the Dallas Cowboys, which only tells a tiny part of the whole story.

Some younger fans may think the Seattle Seahawks are the Niners’ top rivals. Perhaps the Green Bay Packers are up there, too.

Yet the San Francisco-Dallas rivalry goes back much further and is far more historic. Going back to the 1970s, when the Cowboys seemingly ended the 49ers’ playoff hopes every year, to “The Catch” in the 1982 NFC Championship game and even that cringe-worthy quote from former Cowboys head coach Jimmy Johnson, “How ’bout them Cowboys?” after beating the Niners in the 1993 NFC Championship game, Dallas and San Francisco have shared no shortage of heated rivalry moments.

Both teams have to find success in order for a rivalry to mean anything, though. And it’s been a while since both teams were good and played each other the same season.

That’s expected to change in 2020.

The Niners visit the Cowboys in Week 15 on a nationally televised Sunday Night Football bout at AT&T Stadium. Coming off a tough Super Bowl loss last February to the Kansas City Chiefs, the 49ers are expected to be in the playoff picture, much like the situation the last time the Niners were in Dallas back in 2014.

San Francisco won that game 28-17, by the way, and Niners fans completely took over AT&T Stadium.

Those aren’t red chairs below:

49ers, Cowboys
Tony Romo #9 of the Dallas Cowboys against the San Francisco 49ers (Photo by Ronald Martinez/Getty Images) /

The 49ers weren’t particularly good the last two times the Cowboys came to Levi’s Stadium; Dallas ultimately winning back-to-back yearly visits in 2016 and 2017.

Yet the Niners figure to be a much tougher challenge against a Cowboys squad, which also improved during the offseason. Particularly during the NFL Draft, when Oklahoma wide receiver CeeDee Lamb, frequently tabbed as the top prospect at his position, fell to Dallas at No. 17 overall. Cornerback Trevon Diggs, taken at No. 51 overall in Round 2, also had first-round talent.

So it shouldn’t be surprising The Action Network listed the Cowboys’ over-under odds at 9.5 wins, surely bolstered by the NFL Draft additions last April.

And if Dallas rides a hot streak in a relatively weak NFC East, that Week 15 bout versus San Francisco should mean quite a lot.

At least it got Fox Sports thinking:


Unlike the 1970s and even the 1990s, surely different than a few years ago, the 49ers are expected to head into this renewed rivalry game as the better team. While Dallas is vying for a playoff berth, San Francisco is just now opening its Super Bowl window.

Either way, both teams are good again. And the rivalry will be renewed.

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Hopefully, this Week 15 bout will carry serious implications for both teams, sparking what is one of the league’s top-heated rivalries between two longtime storied franchises.