When Tony Romo went down for the second time in Week 12 with a clavicle injury, it spelled the end of the Cowboys' season. The Cowboys went 3-1 with Romo in the lineup, and 1-11 without him.
Not much may have been expected from Sean Lee this season. The linebacker missed the entire 2014 season with an ACL tear. But Lee not only led the Cowboys in tackles this season with 76, but he set career highs in tackles, assisted tackles (52) and sacks (2.5). Lee also made headlines when he opted to not play in the Cowboys final game. Had he, he would have received $2 million, as he would have played over 80 percent of the Cowboys' defensive snaps. But a hamstring injury would have hampered his play, and Lee didn't want to disrespect his teammates.
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It was by no means spectacular, but when Jason Witten went upfield against the Washington Redskins and caught a seven-yard pass, he became one of just 12 people with 1,000 receptions in the NFL, and just the second tight end. Witten would also set a Dallas franchise record later on, after catching a ball in 118 consecutive games.
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It wasn't necessarily a blowout by the Buffalo Bills, as the final score was only 16-6, but the complete lack of offense for the Cowboys was just absolutely painful. Kellen Moore was completely ineffective, and the Cowboys couldn't even manage a single touchdown in the game.
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At the beginning of the season, Darren McFadden was just one of a few running backs fighting for some carries. But after the Cowboys were forced to cut Joseph Randle, it became McFadden's backfield, and he took it by storm. McFadden ended his year with 1,089 yards rushing, passing the 1,000 yard mark for the second time in his career.
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Best offseason aquisition
Entering the 2015 draft, La'el Collins was one of the best offensive lineman available, but teams avoided him after he was scheduled to speak with police following the shooting death of a pregnant woman Collins had a relationship with. But Collins would go undrafted, and he accepted a free agent bid from Jerry Jones to come to the Cowboys. Collins would solidify one of the best offensive lines in the NFL, starting in 11 games.
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The biggest surprise of the season was the Cowboys' signing of Greg Hardy. The uber-talented defensive end-turned free agent would normally have tons of teams knocking on his door. But a 2014 suspension for domestic violence turned teams away. But not the Cowboys.They signed Hardy, and were promptly rewarded with six sacks. They even stuck by Hardy's side as more information came out about the domestic violence incident.
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Dez Bryant signed a five-year, $70 million deal prior to the season, and he was supposed to play like the a top receiver in the NFL. He didn't, even when Romo was in the lineup. Injuries cost him seven games, but even when he was in the lineup, he seemed disinterested and sometimes unwilling to give it his all. He set career lows in virtually every statistical category. It was a season to forget for Bryant.