Back in the day, Tony Dungy was not only one of the best coaches in the NFL but also one of the most respected coaches and leaders.
He took a Tampa Bay Buccaneers franchise that spent its first 20 years as a laughingstock and helped make it into a winner by building a culture there, then he took an Indianapolis Colts team that has been perennial bridesmaids and led them to a Super Bowl championship.
These days, Dungy makes a living as an analyst for NBC’s “Football Night In America,” and he feels the San Francisco 49ers may have an easy time with the Dallas Cowboys in the NFC Divisional playoff round this weekend.
He didn’t point to any specific matchup or aspect of the game, however.
Rather, Dungy pointed out a quirk in the scheduling that favors San Francisco – it played its Wild Card game on Saturday, while Dallas played on Monday.
As good as the Cowboys looked tonight I think they have very little chance against the 49ers next week and it’s not their fault. There are very few examples EVER of teams winning Monday night road game then Sunday road game. Now give SF ( a great team) an extra day of rest. Tough pic.twitter.com/zmwAu8I7jv
— Tony Dungy (@TonyDungy) January 17, 2023
Football is a violent, grueling sport, and it is especially grueling and violent when a team has to go up against the 49ers’ physical and dominant defense.
When a team has had less rest than the 49ers, it is a recipe for failure.
On paper, this would look to be a competitive matchup, as the Cowboys have a solid quarterback in Dak Prescott, two productive running backs, a Pro Bowl wide receiver in CeeDee Lamb, and multiple Pro Bowlers on defense.
But rest and preparation time matter in the playoffs, and combined with the fact that this contest will be played at Levi’s Stadium, Dallas’ reduced rest and preparation time means it faces an uphill climb.