After all the hype. All the hoopla. All the coaching changes this offseason. The Dallas Cowboys are who we thought they were. They are the same team who went 8-8 in 2011. The same team that went 8-8 in 2012. And the same team that is currently 5-5, and tied for first place in the worst division in the NFL. But it may take another losing season for the Cowboys to ultimately find success.
Nov 10, 2013; New Orleans, LA, USA; Dallas Cowboys head coach Jason Garrett reacts on the sideline during the first half of a game at Mercedes-Benz Superdome. Mandatory Credit: Derick E. Hingle-USA TODAY Sports
Cowboys owner and general manager Jerry Jones made it somewhat clear during training camp that regardless of this season’s outcome, head coach Jason Garrett’s job is safe.
"“If you’re in close here, you see how Jason is responding to obviously unsatisfactory times. And I can tell you firsthand that’s impressive. So I like that as far as looking ahead at the future. It is very good. And so that everything I’m thinking about is not only about how to beat the Giants when we open up but also about what our future is in a positive way with Jason. And I look to the future with Jason and not just through his contract that we’re sitting here with right now…But it is not what is implied when you say, ‘Well, this is an Armageddon year. Well, it is not that with me.”"
But do you really believe him? If Garrett pulls out another 8-8 season this year, which is very possible, then he keeps his job? Honestly, the three mediocre seasons aren’t all Garrett’s fault. Jerry Jones and his son, executive vice president Stephen Jones, shoulder a lot of the blame. Their decisions have negatively impacted this team: The firing of Rob Ryan as defensive coordinator in January. Their selection of tight end Gavin Escobar in the second round of this year’s NFL draft. Their salary cap limitations. Placing the franchise tag on Anthony Spencer for the second year in a row. The entire Jay Ratliff situation. A lot of the blame lands in their executive laps. But they will not fire themselves this offseason.
No. If there will be one head to roll this offseason, it will be Garrett’s’ by default. And assistant coaches Bill Callahan and Monte Kiffin’s heads should be right beside him. Current defensive line coach Rob Marinelli should become our new defensive coordinator. And Monday Night Football analyst Jon “Chucky” Gruden should be our new head coach. Unfortunately, I don’t see this happening if Dallas makes the postseason this year. And it needs to happen.
I’m not saying Dallas needs to intentionally lose . That’s ridiculous. But my biggest fear is that we go 8-8 again, and Jones thinks that’s okay. Three straight years of 8-8 are okay. That to him, it means we are almost over the hump…again. That we are one player away, one assistant coach away, one lucky break away from being a Super Bowl caliber team. An nothing…nothing is farther from the truth. This team needs a spark. It need to be resuscitated back to life.
Garrett has proven himself an ineffective coach. Whether that is because he’s young and inexperienced or because he doesn’t have the balls to stand up to Jerry Jones, it doesn’t really matter. Regardless of the various injuries or of his positive effects on Jones’ decision making, it simply has not been enough. If Dallas is going to win a Super Bowl anytime soon, it will happen quicker under Gruden then Garrett. The sooner the switch is made, the quicker Dallas can start down a more successful path. Because the one they have been on for the last three seasons is leading nowhere.