Mike McCarthy responds to Jerry Jones’ ever-changing HC comments

LANDOVER, MARYLAND - DECEMBER 12: Head coach Mike McCarthy of the Dallas Cowboys looks on against the Washington Football Team during the third quarter at FedExField on December 12, 2021 in Landover, Maryland. (Photo by Rob Carr/Getty Images)
LANDOVER, MARYLAND - DECEMBER 12: Head coach Mike McCarthy of the Dallas Cowboys looks on against the Washington Football Team during the third quarter at FedExField on December 12, 2021 in Landover, Maryland. (Photo by Rob Carr/Getty Images) /

Dallas Cowboys head coach Mike McCarthy was a guest on the Rich Eisen Show on Tuesday, and the interview was fascinating, to say the least.

As we all know at this point, Cowboys owner Jerry Jones spent significant time toying around and mincing words in terms of what was going to happen with his entire coaching staff after this season ended a few weeks too soon.

At first, Jones refused to solidify the head coach’s future. Then, he said he was going to keep McCarthy all along, and responded, “You never heard that from me” when pressed on his apparent waffling.Then, Jones said the owner himself was the reason Dan Quinn stayed in Dallas, and the wishy-washy comments on McCarthy were all part of the ploy to keep Quinn in town. Then, the GM said Quinn would be a great candidate for head coach of the Cowboys.

In summary, Jones has been all over the place and poor McCarthy hasn’t been able to get a word in… until now.

Eisen was not shy about asking him about the ever-changing comments from the Cowboys’ GM. “Part of the criticism about your job seems to be coming from the man who writes your checks, to be very honest with you,” Eisen said. Eisen then pointed out that the story where Jones is quoted as saying, “Mike knows that someday somebody other than him will be the head coach of the Dallas Cowboys” is literally on the team’s website!

Eisen asked McCarthy how he felt about that, and McCarthy hilariously replied, “Oh, so we have an hour, correct?” Yikes. The head coach said he usually tries to turn a blind eye to that sort of thing, but also feels it’s “part of the landscape.” He continued:

"“I’m the leader of this football team. And, I’m about winning. And, thats all ive ever focused on and thats all I ever will focus on. Are these narratives unusual? Definitely. I’ve never dealt with anything like this. Do I wish I didn’t have to come on here and answer questions about it? Ya. No doubt about it. I wish we were talking about something else.”"

Wow. The full interview can be watched in the tweet below.

During an appearance on the Rich Eisen Show, Cowboys’ Mike McCarthy responded to Jerry Jones’ recent comments that amounted to dangling a head coaching position over his assistants’ heads, a tradition that crosses eras from Sean Payton to Jason Garrett to now Dan Quinn.

To be fair, that quote came after a lot of McCarthy trying to do the politically correct thing. The broadcaster asked the coach if he had talked to Jones since this article was posted on the Cowboys’ own website and McCarthy said he absolutely had. McCarthy said he talks to Jones on a regular basis “about everything” and that he has “an excellent relationship” with the GM. Very kind words about a guy who recently refused to confirm your future, Mike. McCarthy even said he spoke with Jones about the entire “Sean Payton becoming the Cowboys HC” narrative!

When pressed on Jones’ comments about defensive coordinator Dan Quinn staying around to potentially be the future head coach of the Cowboys, McCarthy didn’t entirely comment on Quinn taking his job. What McCarthy did say, though, was very interesting. The head coach said he had talks with Quinn “long before” the DC took any head coaching interviews, and Quinn said he was happy with his situation in Dallas – implying he didn’t entirely want to leave.

McCarthy said when the narrative broke out about his future being up for grabs, Quinn came to him and said he didn’t like the developments and asked McCarthy if he really needed to take one of those head coaching jobs. Apparently, the two coaches laughed about it.

“The reality of it is I’m about winning,” McCarthy said. “He’s about winning. And the best thing for the Dallas Cowboys is for Dan Quinn to be here.” McCarthy understood it was ultimately Quinn’s decision, but he wanted his DC to know he wanted him to stay in Dallas.

If you listen to the interview, you will see that after Eisen asked a simple first question, McCarthy went six minutes without interruption. It’s like the head coach has been locked in a cage listening to Jones’ constant commentary, and Eisen finally gave him the chance to speak his mind. Whether you think he’s a good coach or not, you have to feel bad for McCarthy. He has enough to deal with. The last thing he needs is his own boss sabotaging his situation.

Yet again, the narrative continues that the head honcho at The Star may be the real problem. The broadcaster seemed to be blown away by Jones’ comments. Eisen noted that “it is unusual for an owner to say that sort of stuff” and asked McCarthy if he responded to Jones saying someone else would be the Cowboys coach in the future. Here was how the conversation ended:

"“Im very, very comfortable with our relationship. At the end of the day, we both want the same thing which is to win a world championship. The narratives are unusual but you have to trust the relationships that you have in our leadership group”"

It’s hard to imagine what it’s like to be in McCarthy’s shoes. But, for now, he thinks he has a great relationship with the Jones family and his defensive coordinator.