The Dallas Cowboys (5-5) will host their hated rival the Washington Redskins (4-6) in the annual Thanksgiving game in Cowboys Stadium this year. The Cowboys and Redskins rivalry dates back to October 9, 1960. It was once considered one of the biggest NFL rivalries of all time and one of the greatest in all of pro sports.
In 1960, the National Football League approved a franchise for Dallas, and Murchison, along with Bedford Wynne, was the franchisee or license holder. A motivating factor in the NFL’s decision to award a license for Dallas was the establishment of the American Football League (AFL) by Lamar Hunt, another Dallas area businessman. Hunt, in helping create the AFL, established a professional football presence in Dallas, and the NFL realized the urgency with which they needed to address a potential market gain by the upstart league and a loss for the established organization.
For the most part, Murchison was a hands-off owner, delegating a great deal of operational control of the Cowboys to General Manager Tex Schramm, Coach Tom Landry and Scouting/Personnel Director Gil Brandt. His general attitude was to hire experts and let them execute the aspect of the business that fell in their expertise. Hence, Landry enjoyed absolute authority over the day to day running of the actual team; Brandt was unhindered in the area of drafting and scouting players, and Schramm oversaw many of the team’s day to day administrative concerns. This laissez-faire attitude has been credited by many Cowboys fans as the driving force in the team’s 20 consecutive winning seasons from 1966–1985. By not interfering with his coaches and staff, Murchison did not create an atmosphere of second guessing and arguments over player selection or credit for the team’s success.
In 1984, Murchison sold the Dallas Cowboys to an investment syndicate led by Bum Bright, a Dallas area businessman who had a background in banking/financial services and in oil/gas production. Bright in turn sold the Cowboys to Jerry Jones in 1989 following several losing seasons.
Cowboys and Redskins Team History
- Texas oilman Clint Murchison Jr. bought the song rights for “Hail to the Redskins” in 1958 for $2,500.
- The Redskins won the first meeting between the two teams 26 to 14 in Griffith Stadium. It was the only game the Redskins (1-9-2) would win that year and that year the Dallas Cowboys (0-11-1) was winless.
- Dallas Cowboys leads the all-time regular season series 62-40-2.
- Washington Redskins leads the all-time postseason series 2–0.
- Cowboys DE Harvey Martin tosses a funeral wreath into Washington’s locker room after a 35-34 Cowboys win that clinched the NFC East on the last day of the 1979 season.