Although the Dallas Cowboys underwent some tremendous changes since their last Super Bowl win, there were also many things that stayed the same heading into the 1995 NFL season. And one of them was Emmitt Smith. The Cowboys’ 1st round draft pick out of Florida in 1990 was entering his sixth season in the NFL. Already a two-time Super Bowl champion, NFL MVP and Super Bowl XXVIII MVP winner, Smith‘s resume was complete. He had also won three rushing titles and was considered one of the top two backs in the league with Barry Sanders. So what was in store for Emmitt in 1995? How about the best rushing season of his career.
Emmitt Smith Dominant 1995 NFL Season
The Cowboys now had a year under coach Barry Switzer going into the 1995 NFL season. Switzer replaced two-time Super Bowl winning coach Jimmy Johnson prior to the 1994 NFL season. What remained was a very talented team that had made the last three NFC Championship title games and won two of them. In 1995, they also added All-Pro cornerback Deion Sanders to the squad, a season after being brought into San Francisco. He played a big part in the 49ers 1994 Super Bowl run and in the process, dethroned the two-time champion Cowboys by defeating them in the NFC Championship game earlier in the year. New season, new hope and Smith made sure there were no new problems for the Cowboys.
Starting in Week 1 on Monday Night Football, Smith shredded the New York Giants for 163 yards on only 21 carries in a 35-9 romp in the Meadowlands. He also had 4 TDs that game. The strong start to the season continued as he opened his 1995 campaign with 4 straight 100 yard games. In Week 3 against the Minnesota Vikings, Smith tallied 150 yards rushing on 20 carries and 2 TDs in 23-17 win on the road.
Smith finished with eleven 100 yard games that season. His highest rushing yardage in a game came against the Atlanta Falcons in Week 8. He carried the ball 26 times for 167 yards and 2 TDs in the 28-13 road win. It was also one of 7 games that season Smith had 2 or more rushing TDs.
Smith, Cowboys Back to Winning Super Bowls
The Cowboys under second year coach Switzer finished 12-4. They would go on to win Super Bowl XXX with a 27-17 victory over the Pittsburgh Steelers, their 3rd Super Bowl win in four years. For Emmitt Smith, he set career highs in rushing yards (1,773) and rushing TDs (25 – which was a NFL record at the time). In the process he captured his fourth and final rushing title. This was definitely a sensational season for the NFL’s all-time leading rusher.