As of about two hours ago, it is no longer proper to criticize Bill Parcells, who has announced his retirement.
After four seasons, the Bill Parcells era here in Dallas is over.
The Cowboys’ head coach for the last four years officially announced his resignation here Monday morning.
“I am retiring from coaching football. I want to thank Jerry Jones and Stephen Jones for their tremendous support over the last four years,” Parcells said in a statement. “Also, the players, my coaching staff and others in the support group who have done so much to help. Dallas is a great city and the Cowboys are an integral part of it. I am hopeful that they are able to go forward from here.”
Parcells, 65, compiled a 34-30 record with the Cowboys over the last four years.
“I am in good health and feel lucky to have been able to coach in the NFL for an extended period of time,” Parcells said. “I leave the game and the NFL with nothing but good feelings and gratitude to all the players, coaches and other people that have assisted me in that regard.”
All of this is just strange, to be honest. Two days ago, Mickey Spagnola wrote a blog entry suggesting that all signs were pointing to a Parcells return. Professional journalists have suggested the same thing. But some amateur posters on the forums have been saying for weeks that Parcells had the look of someone who was going to quit. And look who turned out to be right.
When Parcells resigned as the Jets’ head coach following the 1999 season, the team had just rebounded from a 4-8 record to finish the season at 8-8, wrapping up the season by beating Seattle, 19-9. Seven seasons later, the Cowboys did almost the exact opposite in sending Parcells into what appears to be his final retirement, losing four of their final five games, including the 21-20 playoff loss to the Seahawks.
Last week, NFL Network aired the story of the 1986 Giants as part of America’s Game, featuring interviews with Parcells, Phil Simms, and Lawrence Taylor. It was well worth watching as a Cowboys fan, because a couple of things became readily apparent. First, the guy who coached the 1986 Giants was not quite the same guy who coached the Cowboys from 2003 to 2006. And second, Bill Parcells is, and will always be, a Giants guy.
Here is the thread on this from the official message boards.