Will Jerry Jones fire Jason Garrett midseason? ‘Cause for concern’ over Cowboys’ 3-5 start
Somehow Jason Garrett is one of the longest-tenured coaches in the NFL, having survived as Cowboys coach since 2010 despite winning just a single playoff game in that stretch. Garrett may be running out of time, however, with Dallas struggling out to a 3-5 start after an ugly home loss on Monday night to the Titans, a 28-14 flop in front of the whole country.
Cowboys owner and GM Jerry Jones admitted after the loss there is “cause for concern” and, um, yeah there sure is. The Cowboys looked terrible and lost by double digits despite being spotted multiple turnovers in the first quarter.
“When you’ve played eight games and only won three, that’s a cause for concern,” Jones said. “We want to play better than we played tonight, so I certainly think each individual and coach and front office is going to have to do better, including me.”
The fiery Cowboys owner also said he felt like Monday’s game was a “step back” for the team and that they looked “tired.” Not exactly a ringing endorsement for a team coming out of a bye week.
“It looked like we were tired,” Jones said. “Throughout the game, actually tired. I don’t know if that’s the case at all, physically. But that’s what it looked like.
“This is quite a, if you will, it’s a step back for us.”
The Cowboys hadn’t played since Oct. 21, were coming off a bye week and were playing their first game with newly-acquired receiver Amari Cooper, a player many believe Jones traded for in order to give Garrett every possible resource to turn things around. The frustration in Jones’ box during the game was quite obvious.
So is Garrett’s time drawing to a close in Dallas? It’s hard not to imagine it’s the case, although Jones made a real point to note, via NFL Media’s Jane Slater, he has no interest in making a coaching change midseason.
If this sounds familiar, it should. Eight years ago, before Garrett was named coach, the Cowboys were limping through the start of the season under Wade Phillips. Jones, who had before never fired a coach midseason, swore he would not do so when it came to Phillips.
“I would never consider doing that during the season,” Jones said on Oct. 18, 2010, following a 24-21 loss to the Vikings that dropped the Cowboys to 1-4 on the season.
The Cowboys would lose their next two games, falling to 1-6. The Friday before they played the Packers on Sunday night, Jones again said he would not fire a coach midseason. That Friday? It was Nov. 5, 2010, eight years to the day Monday.
Three days later, after an embarrassing Sunday night loss, Phillips was fired and Garrett was named interim head coach. Let’s see what’s up next for the Cowboys … oh no. Sunday night in Philadelphia versus the Eagles.
That’s a game that, should the Cowboys lose badly, they could be done in terms of the NFC race. 3-6 ain’t gonna cut it — the Cowboys have to do no worse than 3-2 in the next five games in order to really stay alive. Winning three of those games would give them a shot at winning out and getting to 9-7. And even that isn’t a guarantee for a playoff berth; they would need some help in the NFC East and maybe a Hail Mary shot at a wild-card berth.
In other words, the Cowboys’ season hangs in the balance right now and whatever Jerry Jones says is irrelevant if the team keeps losing. He’s said he won’t fire someone before and he did it anyway. Words won’t stop him from making a change this time around either.
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