Jul 22, 2013; Oxnard, CA, USA; Dallas Cowboys defensive coordinator Monte Kiffin during drills at training camp at the River Ridge Fields. Mandatory Credit: Jayne Kamin-Oncea-USA TODAY Sports

Keeping Kiffin, is it the Right Move?

The Cowboys season has been over for almost two weeks. Fans were expecting some coaching changes, but so far nothing has happened. Monte Kiffin is one coach whose job security was under question. In his first year, Kiffin coached the worst defense in the league in terms of yardage. As a result of this, many fans were calling for Kiffin’s head. For now it looks like Kiffin will keep his job, but is that the right decision?

It was very apparent that Kiffin’s defense was not effective this year. He preached a bend don’t break philosophy, but the defense snapped in his hands. There are a couple of reasons why this happened. Injury was a huge factor, especially with the loss of Sean Lee. No team had more defensive players suit up than the Cowboys, who had 41 different players on defense. If we learned anything from 2012, it’s that injury plays a huge factor on defense.  Rob Ryan was unfairly fired because of injuries. If we fired Kiffin, could we potentially be repeating history? I doubt it, but I do believe that Kiffin deserve some time and patience.

I believe that the Tampa 2 can succeed in the NFL. However it requires the right kind of personnel, which the Cowboys don’t have. Prior to Kiffin’s arrival, the Cowboys ran Rob Ryan’s system which was the complete opposite of the Tampa 2. Rob had a 3-4, aggressive, man coverage scheme, while Kiffin ran a 4-3, conservative, zone scheme. The Cowboys have some talented players on defense, but they struggled in Kiffin’s scheme. Most notably, Bruce Carter and Morris Claiborne had trouble in the new scheme. If Kiffin gets another year to improve his personnel, I can see the Dallas defense succeeding.

Consistency is a very important part of the NFL. If you take a look at the Browns organization, they are perennially non-contenders. This is because they have no consistency as a team. It seems like every year they switch their quarterback, coach, or front office in hope that change will lead to improvement. Sometimes it works, but patience is needed as well. Kiffin can succeed in Dallas despite an abysmal season. If we give him time and patience, there is a chance that his defense can succeed.

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