2012 NFL Power Rankings: Cowboys end year on down note

USA TODAY Sports

Another 8-8 season has Dallas in the middle of the pack in SB Nation's NFL power rankings.

Under Jerry Jones' watch, a franchise that was once the envy of the NFL has become the definition of mediocrity, a reality that has been overshadowed by the blinding media spotlight under which it plays.

Dallas has won one playoff game in the last 15 years, and after another disappointing face-plant in a do-or-die Week 17 game against an NFC East rival, the Cowboys will finish the season at 8-8 for the second consecutive season.

As a result, they're right in the middle of the final batch of power rankings from SB Nation:

18. Dallas Cowboys (LW: 14, 8-8): They call him Big Game Tony Romo.

From a national perspective, it's no surprise the big story of the game was Romo, who has a disturbing habit of playing his worst games on national TV -- i.e. against high-quality competition.

But, as anyone who has been watching Dallas all season knows, for all of his flaws, it's hard to pin too much of the blame on what's going in Dallas on the Cowboys' high-profile QB.

After all, the Cowboys have been mediocre since long before before Romo came into the picture, and if their history of drafting under Jerry Jones is any indication, they'll be mediocre long after he leaves.

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