- WHEN: Sunday, Oct. 6; 3:25 p.m. CDT.
- WHERE: Cowboys Stadium; Arlington, Texas.
- TV: CBS.
- SERIES RECORD: Broncos lead, 6-4 (Cowboys lead, 1-0 in the postseason).
- JOHN FOX'S RECORD: 0-6 (1-0 in the postseason).
- PEYTON MANNING'S RECORD: 2-2.
- SERIES STREAK: Denver has won the last four.
- LAST TIME: Broncos 17, Cowboys 10; Oct. 4, 2009. A last-second pass deflection by
Champ Baileyprevented a game-tying touchdown and preserved the Broncos' fourth consecutive win to open the 2009 season. Bailey's left-handed swat was his second crucial play of the game; a quarter earlier, he ended a Dallas scoring threat by intercepting Tony Romo at the Denver 3-yard-line. Bailey's end-game heroics served a fragile lead that the Broncos had only claimed 105 seconds earlier when Kyle Orton hit Brandon Marshall for a 51-yard touchdown that saw the receiver weave his way through a befuddled defense for a score that sent the home crowd into raptures. The Broncos climbed back into the game thanks to a defense that clamped down on Dallas after allowing a pair of first-quarter scores and held the Cowboys scoreless for the final three quarters.
- LAST TIME IN TEXAS: Broncos 24, Cowboys 21; Nov. 24, 2005. Ron Dayne's NFL career was mostly a disappointment after winning the 1999 Heisman Trophy at Wisconsin. But he had a few shining moments, none brighter than a 55-yard sprint on the second play of overtime to set up Jason Elam's game-winning 24-yard field goal and give Denver its most dramatic regular-season win of a strong 13-3 season. Dayne picked up 98 yards on just seven carries, including a 16-yard jaunt that put the Broncos in front 21-14 in the third quarter. But Dayne's exploits wouldn't have been possible without the work of Bailey, who returned a Drew Bledsoe interception 65 yards for the touchdown that opened the scoring in the first quarter.
NOTING THE GAME:
- This will be the Broncos' first regular-season game at Cowboys Stadium, and one of two games this year to take place at stadia in which they've never before played a game that mattered. Denver has lost its last six trips to new venues heading into 2013 (Ford Field and Reliant Stadium in 2007, Bank of America Stadium in 2008, Lucas Oil Stadium and Lincoln Financial Field in 2009 and Wembley Stadium in 2010).
- If Tony Romo avoids injury in the next three-plus months, he will be the first quarterback to start multiple games for the Cowboys against Denver since Troy Aikman, who was 2-1 as Dallas' starter in the series. Since Aikman's retirement, Ryan Leaf, Drew Bledsoe and Romo have all started -- and lost.
- The Broncos will start a fifth different quarterback against Dallas in the last 15 years (John Elway 1998, Brian Griese 2001, Jake Plummer 2005, Kyle Orton 2009). Since 1992, Elway is the only Broncos quarterback to start multiple games against Dallas, playing in the 1995 and 1998 contests. But an injury forced him out of the 1992 game, which led to the bizarre Tommy Maddox/Shawn Moore rotation. Maddox threw three touchdown passes, but also had four interceptions. Moore had neither a touchdown or interception in the 31-27 loss.
- In the last six games against Dallas, seven different Broncos have thrown touchdown passes: Elway (4), Maddox (3), Orton (2) and one each for Griese, Plummer, Hugh Millen and Arthur Marshall. Millen relieved an injured Elway late in the 1995 game; Marshall, a wide receiver, hit Cedric Tillman for an 81-yard score to give Denver a 27-24 fourth-quarter lead against the eventual world champions in the Dec. 6, 1992 game. Marshall completed another pass for a touchdown the following season and has the Broncos' all-time record for quarterback rating (with no minimum of pass attempts), with an impossible-to-top 158.3 mark.
- The Cowboys bring out the best in Bailey. He has intercepted them in each of his two games against them as a Bronco, and his first career interception came in his first NFL game, for Washington in 1999.
- History tells us to expect a close game. The average margin in games played between the teams in Texas is 5.6 points, and the last two games (both played at the since-demolished Texas Stadium) have been decided by a combined five points.
- Do not be surprised to see the largest crowd for a regular-season game in Broncos history for the contest. The current record is 91,020, set for an Oct. 28, 1984 clash with the Raiders at the Los Angeles Memorial Coliseum. The Cowboys have had eight regular-season attendance figures larger than that since moving to Cowboys Stadium in 2009, including three last year.
- The Cowboys haven't worn their traditional white jerseys in a home game against the Broncos since 1995. The last two games the teams played in Texas saw Dallas wear early-1960's throwback uniforms. The Broncos joined the Cowboys by dusting off the orange jerseys with light blue helmets and the famous "horse and D" logo for the 2001 game, but went with their usual modern road whites for the 2005 trip.