I know Jerry Jones loves his Dallas Cowboys.
He also has a good head for business, taking the Cowboys from a value of 100+ million when he bought the franchise, to 2+ billion today. In many ways, he’s shown the NFL the way to make their teams more profitable and marketable.
And Jerry cares deeply about winning, I’m sure, because winning attracts fans and fans, in the business of football, are the customer base. What business person wouldn’t want to make the product they sell more attractive to customers?
This is why I can’t buy the reasoning that Jerry makes decisions that stroke his ego or save face rather than making decisions that are best for the Cowboys. The only time I can think of that he may have done that was when he and Jimmy Johnson, his hand picked head coach that led the Cowboys to two straight SuperBowl wins, parted ways. Even with that, his hand may have been forced.
It would be simple to blame Jerry for the split, as most people do, citing his infamous quote that any of 500 other coaches could have taken that Cowboys team to the SuperBowl. It’s not that simple. Jimmy Johnson, in the years since, has admitted to wanting to leave and/or playing a bigger part in their split than was public at the time. Do you really think that Jerry Jones wouldn’t have kept Jimmy for a couple more years, knowing it was probably best for the Cowboys, had Jimmy wanted to stay?
Their super-sized egos simply could no longer co-exist. In that scenario, should an owner buckle to his employee just to not rock the boat, effectively creating a roll reversal? Of course not. No business owner would, nor should they. I wouldn’t put up with that, and you wouldn’t either.
I also know that Jerry Jones and his son, Stephen, each have 23 years experience in the NFL. Jerry played football in college, so did Stephen. They know football. Stephen is on the NFL’s competition committee. Jerry has the title of GM of the Dallas cowboys and Stephen is the teams salary cap czar and is the defacto Asst GM.
Not every NFL team has a GM, while other teams have a GM and Asst GM and an Executive Vice President of Player Personnel. Many of these teams executives have less than 23 years experience. So, what about Jerry Jones and Stephen Jones respective experience and knowledge of the game of
football makes either of them unqualified to be a GM? I know I’m a candle in the wind on this, but I have no problem with Jerry and/or Stephen being the GM as well as the owner of the Cowboys.
Do I agree with all the moves Jerry makes with his team? No. Not at all. (for one, I would have moved heaven and earth to get Sean Payton as our head coach) Because I, like the rest of CowboysNation, like to think the team is mine, though I haven’t spent millions – literally – on the Cowboys like Jerry has. I pretend to have a vested interest in the team, but it’s purely emotional. If the Cowboys don’t win another game and eventually disappear from the NFL landscape, I’ve lost nothing. The Jones’ on the other hand could lose millions not to mention respect and their current livelihoods in that improbable scenario.
It’s not that hard, really, to present arguments in favor of the Jones’ and their running of the Dallas Cowboys. But I’m not going to sit here and apologize for them either. Jerry has the teams best interest at heart, but knowing and accepting that truth does not always fit with the directions he takes with the team.
We should trust Jerry’s decisions, because he is the owner of the Dallas Cowboys. We should trust for the reasons I wrote about above. We should trust, but we don’t. We still don’t.
So where is the disconnect?
Maybe it’s because Jerry does things backwards sometimes. He makes the changes he needs to make, but not necessary in any logical order.
The easiest example of that is back in when he chose Jason Garrett as his offensive coordinator before he had a head coach in place. We look at that and think what head coach is going to accept that? Even though assistants sign separate contracts with a team and often times, when a head coach is fired, his assistants that he picked are retained by the team. The perception, however, is that the head coach, because he is hired first, gets to pick his assistants, but that’s not always the case.
The most recent backwards move was firing DC Rob Ryan and completely overhauling the defense. While CowboysNation was not impressed with the defense, I’m pretty sure the consensus was that the offense needed attention first. The defense probably needed overhauling and it looks like those plans were in the works well before the season was over, but we are left wondering if the much needed offensive overhaul is coming. Had Jerry just made all the defensive and offensive coaching moves around the same time even, we would have trusted that more.
For me, one of the things that speaks to a disconnect is the ‘Romo friendly’ phrase that has been preached by Jerry Jones for the last few years. I believe Jerry has a great deal of faith/hope in QB Tony Romo, as I do, but year in and year out, the team is not Romo friendly at all.
Garrett lets Andre Gurode, a trusted center for Romo, go with absolutely no replacement. That position has been in flux since and is directly responsible for some of Romo’s early season regression. Then you switch offensive tackles in ’11 then switch again in ’12 and looks like a switch again in ’13. The receivers run sloppy routes and the offensive, while boringly predictable, requires play calls that are so complicated and have so many check downs that every play looks like an audible and the ball barely gets snapped in time. ‘Romo friendly’?
Jerry and Stephen are more than qualified, more than capable, to make the decisions and run their Cowboys. Their goal is the same as CowboysNation’s. That goal is to have a winning team that makes the playoffs and competes for a SuperBowl every year.
Jerry Jones loves his Dallas Cowboys
CowboysNation loves it’s Dallas cowboys
So where is the disconnect?