NFL.com just broke down the 10 best games to watch this upcoming season, and the 49ers made the list with a highly anticipated showdown against an old rival.
We don't quite know when the San Francisco 49ers will play all of their 17 regular-season games this season (the scuttlebutt is that it'll be announced on Thursday, May 11).
But, we do know which teams the Niners will play.
Of the eight home games San Francisco will get, one of them will be against arguably the biggest rival the 49ers have: the Dallas Cowboys.
Granted, between the mid-1990s and early 2020s, that rivalry was mostly dormant. Neither team met in the playoffs for an extensive period of time, and the Niners' rivalries shifted within the division against teams like the Los Angeles Rams and Seattle Seahawks.
Although fans of both teams can probably recall just how personal the rivalry used to be back in the 1990s. The 1970s, too.
However, San Francisco has ended Dallas' playoff campaigns in back-to-back years, hanging on in a thriller at AT&T Stadium two seasons ago and then knocking off quarterback Dak Prescott and Co. last January in the divisional round at Levi's Stadium.
Payback for all those times when the Cowboys eliminated the 49ers in the playoffs?
Either way, a regular-season game between these two storied rivals sounds about right in light of what has happened over the last two years, and NFL.com is paying attention to just that.
NFL.com lists 49ers vs. Cowboys as a top-10 game to watch in 2023
The Niners will play both the AFC North and the NFC East this season, meaning a game against Dallas will be on the docket.
That's the one NFL.com's Nick Shook placed at No. 4 on his list of most-tantalizing games of the 2023 NFL schedule:
"The Cowboys reached each of the past two postseasons with lofty hopes -- and each time, those hopes were spoiled by the 49ers, a team that might not have appeared superior on paper but ended up being the better of the two when everything was on the line. In the 2022 Divisional Round, San Francisco picked off Dak Prescott twice, squeaking out a close win despite scoring just one total touchdown (the other 12 points came via Robbie Gould's leg). It wasn't an explosive game, but it was a gripping one, the latest showdown to help reignite the fire in a rivalry that dates back to the 1960s. These teams' next meeting is likely to be just as good."
It's good that Shook is paying homage to the decades-long rivalry while also looking forward to the next chapter.
The Philadelphia Eagles, who beat San Francisco in the NFC Championship game last January, appear on that list twice (once versus quarterback Aaron Rodgers and the New York Jets) and make it to the No. 1 spot in a Super Bowl grudge match versus the Kansas City Chiefs.
While that makes sense, given what happened last February, it'll be another chapter between the 49ers and Cowboys that'll capture The Faithful's attention spans.