TOM LANDRY

TOM LANDRY

Class of 1990
Coach
(Texas)
1960-1988 Dallas Cowboys

Thomas Wade Landry. . .Noted for impassive, sideline demeanor. . . Perfected flex defense, multiple offense, revived shotgun (spread) offense. . .29-year tenure with one team tied NFL record. . .Career record: 270-178-6. . .270 wins third most ever. . .Had 20 straight winning seasons, five NFC titles, two Super Bowl wins. . . Defensive back, punter with Yankees (AAFC), Giants (NFL), 1949-1955. . .Born September 11, 1924, in Mission, Texas . . .Died February 12, 2000, at age of 75.

Tom Landry was selected as the head coach when the Dallas Cowboys started their first National Football League season in 1960. He remained in that capacity for 29 seasons until new ownership opted for new field leadership after the 1988 campaign.

At the time of his retirement, only George Halas, who coached the Chicago Bears for 40 years, surpassed his 29-year tenure with one club. It took Landry a few years to develop his young club into contender status but, once he did, the Cowboys enjoyed exceptional success for more than two decades.

The Cowboys under Landry had their first winning season and their first NFL Eastern Conference championship in 1966. They didn't fall below .500 again until 1986. During that period, Landry's teams had 20 straight winning seasons, 13 divisional championship, five NFC titles and victories in Super Bowls VI and XII. The Cowboys also played in Super Bowls V, X and XIII.

His regular season career record is 250-162-6 and his record counting playoffs is 270-178-6. Only Halas and Don Shula top his 270 career wins. Landry gained a reputation as a great technical innovator, as well as an inspirational leader. He introduced the "flex defense" and "multiple offense" in the 1960s. In the 1970s, he restructured the "shotgun" or "spread" offense and, in the 1980s, he embraced and helped develop the "situation substitution" concept of handling his player talent.

Landry was an excellent player in the pros. He was a defensive back, punter and kick returner with the 1949 New York Yankees in the All-America Football Conference and with the New York Giants in the NFL between 1950 and 1955. He recorded 32 career interceptions and had a 40.9-yard punting average. He served the Giants as a player-coach in 1954 and 1955 before becoming a full-time defensive coach from 1956 to 1959.

Team Year W L T PCT. W L PCT. W L T PCT.
Dallas Cowboys 1960 0 11 1 .042              
Dallas Cowboys 1961 4 9 1 .321              
Dallas Cowboys 1962 5 8 1 .393              
Dallas Cowboys 1963 4 10 0 .286              
Dallas Cowboys 1964 5 8 1 .393              
Dallas Cowboys 1965 7 7 0 .500              
Dallas Cowboys 1966 10 3 1 .750 0 1 .000        
Dallas Cowboys 1967 9 5 0 .643 1 1 .500        
Dallas Cowboys 1968 12 2 0 .857 0 1 .000        
Dallas Cowboys 1969 11 2 1 .821 0 1 .000        
Dallas Cowboys 1970 10 4 0 .714 2 1 .667        
Dallas Cowboys 1971 11 3 0 .786 3 0 1.000        
Dallas Cowboys 1972 10 4 0 .714 1 1 .500        
Dallas Cowboys 1973 10 4 0 .714 1 1 .500        
Dallas Cowboys 1974 8 6 0 .571              
Dallas Cowboys 1975 10 4 0 .714 2 1 .667        
Dallas Cowboys 1976 11 3 0 .786 0 1 .000        
Dallas Cowboys 1977 12 2 0 .857 3 0 1.000        
Dallas Cowboys 1978 12 4 0 .750 2 1 .667        
Dallas Cowboys 1979 11 5 0 .688 0 1 .000        
Dallas Cowboys 1980 12 4 0 .750 2 1 .667        
Dallas Cowboys 1981 12 4 0 .750 1 1 .500        
Dallas Cowboys 1982 6 3 0 .667 2 1 .667        
Dallas Cowboys 1983 12 4 0 .750 0 1 .000        
Dallas Cowboys 1984 9 7 0 .563              
Dallas Cowboys 1985 10 6 0 .625 0 1 .000        
Dallas Cowboys 1986 7 9 0 .438              
Dallas Cowboys 1987 7 8 0 .467              
Dallas Cowboys 1988 3 13 0 .188              
Career Total 250 162 6 .605 20 16 .556 270 178 6 .601

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