Quarterback Mark Brunell started 33 games across three seasons (2004-06) for the Washington Redskins, leading them to a playoff appearance in 2005.
Along the way, Brunell appeared in four Redskins-Cowboys rivalry games, leading his burgundy and gold to a 2-2 record, throwing 75-for-129 with eight touchdowns.
Looking back on the games years later, Brunell has a lot of fond memories of the games, regardless of what the seasons had in store for the Redskins.
As the Redskins prepare to enter the second Dallas game of the season with a disappointing 3-11 mark, Brunell said that a team's record will be the furthest thing from players' minds.
"Forget about everything that has led up to this moment, with all the distractions that have been going on. Once the game starts, it’s about two football teams with great traditions."
Sunday marks the 108th overall meeting and the 106th regular season clash between the division rivals.
The Redskins trail the all-time regular season series, 40-63-2.
A victory on Sunday would give the Redskins’ three wins in their last four games against the Cowboys, a series that has been streaky in recent years.
"It would be a tough game to bet on because of the rivalry, because of what this game means and all the things that have been going on in Washington," Brunell assessed. "Many times, teams that have things like this going on come together and just play football.
"They say, 'Forget everything else, let’s go out and play football.'"
And the Cowboys certainly have their demons this season.
On defense, the Cowboys are yielding the second-most yards per play and the most yards per game in the league.
That breaks down to the fourth-worst run defense and the dead-last pass defense in the NFL, yielding third-down conversions at a higher rate than 29 other teams.
All of that plays into the hands of
If the Redskins can improve ball security this week at FedExField, they will have a chance to win what could be a high-scoring affair.
"I think it will be a good football game," Brunell said. "We’ve got our work cut out for us; Dallas hasn’t exactly been lighting it up so I think it’ll be a good matchup."