The 1979Dallas Cowboys season was their 20th in the league. The team was unable to improve on their previous output of 12–4, winning only eleven games.1 They qualified for the playoffs, but lost in the Divisional round.
The Cowboys still possessed a great offense, but suffered defensive losses as defensive tackle Jethro Pugh and safety Mark Washington retired, safety Charlie Waters missed the season with injury, Ed "Too Tall" Jones left the team while he embarked on a professional boxing career (Jones would return in 1980), and Thomas "Hollywood" Henderson was cut in November for erratic play and behavior. The season began 8–2 before a three-game losing streak placed the season in jeopardy (one of the three being a 30–24 loss to Houston in which Oilers coach Bum Phillips declared the Oilers as "Texas's Team"). The team rallied to win their final three to finish at 11–5 and gain the number one seed in the NFC.
In the season's final regular season game against the Redskins, with the NFC East Title at issue, Roger Staubach rallied the Cowboys from a 34–21 deficit in the last four minutes to win, 35–34. It turned out to be Staubach's last win. The Cowboys were upset at home in the divisional playoff by the Rams and Staubach retired after the season.