No More Yankee Coaches! And No More from Georgia, Either!


dallas_logo.gifI was unaware until I moved to Texas eleven years ago that the term “Yankee” was derogatory. And I would have never used the term as such, until we had a coach who graduated from Central Connecticut University and a head coach born and raised in New Jersey. So now I’m saying it: no more Yankee head coaches!

Just to be fair, we should remember that prior to those two, we had a coach named Chan Gailey, who was born and raised in Georgia. Since we know how that turned out: no more coaches from Georgia!

And a quick one: Switzer– Arkansas– no chance.

We know that the two greatest Cowboys coaches were born in Texas, so why mess with what we know will work? Okay, so this rules out Jason Garrett because he was born in Pennsylvania. It also rules out Dan Reeves, who was born in Georgia. I’ll stretch this a bit and say the Georgia prohibition also eliminates Norv Turner, who was born in North Carolina.

That leaves two: Wade Phillips (Orange, Texas) and Gary Gibbs (Beaumont, Texas). See how easy this is?

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I remember pretty well the three-year period prior to Bill Parcells’ arrival, which was a period filled with, “We did what?” As in, “We traded two first round picks for Joey Galloway?” Then, “We just drafted Quincy Carter in the second round, when we could have probably waited until the fourth?” Followed with, “We just traded up to get Tony Dixon?” And, of course, “We just hired Bruce Coslet?”

Jason GarrettWell, the days of Tuna’s Grand Disappointment are gone, and we are back to the “what in the hell are we doing?” stage. We just hired an offensive coordinator in Jason Garrett, notwithstanding the fact that he has never called a play in his life. I know that a Princeton degree means quite a bit, but in this context? This is from Jean-Jacques Taylor yesterday:

Jerry Jones should know better. This is not the way to conduct a successful coaching search. You would think after five previous searches, Jerry would’ve figured that out.

Guess not.

Who knows whether Jerry will find the coach to the lead the Cowboys to the sixth Super Bowl title in franchise history? Frankly, simply winning a playoff game might be enough to get a lifetime contract given the Cowboys’ recent history.

This isn’t about Jason Garrett or Wade Phillips or Norv Turner or Gary Gibbs. And it won’t be about whomever else Jerry seeks permission to interview.

This is strictly about his process. It is flawed. If this weren’t a family newspaper, the language regarding this process would be stronger. Much stronger.

No one hires the offensive or defensive coordinator before the head coach. And no one hires a coordinator and says if we can’t find anybody better, then we’ll make you the head coach.

That is the dumbest thing ever.

In college, we used the phrase “fecked up.” I think it applies here.

Adam Schien (you know, S-C-H-I-E-N) argued today that a Phillips-Garrett combination could be a winner:

Jerry Jones hired Jason Garrett as the Cowboys’ offensive coordinator before hiring a new head coach. Now it is clear that Bill Parcells’ old job has been usurped of its power.

Heck, we knew this was true when Jones signed Terrell Owens against Bill Parcells’ wishes.

Now, Parcells is gone, the ultimate distraction that is Owens stays, the team still has a vacancy sign hanging over the post for head coach, but there is a new, yet, old face running the offense.

How bout them Cowboys?

It isn’t conventional in terms of the chronological order, but you do have to like the appointment of Garrett as the team’s offensive coordinator. Some will say Garrett is young and hasn’t really been a coach, but he has basically been coaching for the last 15 years as a savvy backup quarterback, including a sustained run with Troy Aikman in Dallas. Anyone who has ever encountered Garrett believes he will be a highly successful coach.

And Jones says Garrett is still a candidate for the head coaching job.

I think under this bizarre circumstance, the best case scenario is to hire Wade Phillips instead.

The Chargers’ defensive coordinator is a wizard on his side of the ball. The San Diego players love him and play hard and brilliantly for him. And Phillips has been a successful head coach, going 48-39 during his stops. Phillips had the Bills headed in the right direction, leading them to a win-loss record that was ten games over .500 in three seasons. If it wasn’t for a meddlesome owner in the Rob Johnson/Doug Flutie quarterback controversy or the Music City Miracle, Phillips could’ve guided the Bills to the Super Bowl.

Phillips would run the same 3-4 defense Parcells ran last year while Garrett would have full autonomy of the offense, mentor Tony Romo, kick Owens in the back side, and learn his craft to ultimately follow Phillips as head coach.

What’s that? Hibernate this blog? You got it.

ESPN’s Super Bowl Rankings: Cowboys Teams


Dallas CowboysESPN created a list that ranks each of the 80 previous Super Bowl teams. Have to be honest that I tend to agree with it, especially because Cowboys teams occupy six of the top 26 spots– although I don’t think the 1977 team belongs as low as 24. Here are the Cowboys teams, in reverse order:

70. 1970 Dallas Cowboys (10-4)

This might seem like a low ranking for a team that lost the Super Bowl on a last-second field goal. But there are factors working against this squad. They went just 3-4 against teams .500 or better, including drubbings of 38-0 and 54-13. Their leading passer, Craig Morton, completed less than half his passes. Dallas had seven takeaways in the Super Bowl and still lost. Positively, rookie Duane Thomas bolstered the Cowboys’ rushing attack and Bob Hayes averaged an incredible 26.1 yards per catch, as America watched a certain fedora-wearing coach begin to make his mark.

63. 1975 Dallas Cowboys (10-4)

This team overachieved to reach the Super Bowl (only three Pro Bowlers), then suffered a narrow defeat against a powerful Steelers team. In the NFC Championship Game, the Cowboys earned a blowout 37-7 victory at Los Angeles against the league’s stingiest scoring defense. Of course, if not for the controversial Hail Mary pass from Roger Staubach to Drew Pearson, this team wouldn’t have beaten top-seeded Minnesota in the first round. Staubach didn’t have one of his better seasons statistically (16 picks), and the Cowboys had the worst record among NFC playoff participants.

26. 1995 Dallas Cowboys (12-4)

We thought about ranking the Cowboys higher and then remembered Barry Switzer was the coach. And that they lost twice to a 6-10 Redskins team. Still, it seemed this team could turn it up whenever it needed to — and won its third Super Bowl in four years with a team that ranked third in the NFL in both points scored and fewest points allowed. Emmitt Smith enjoyed his finest season with career highs in rushing yards, touchdowns and receptions. This team equaled the 8-2 mark against teams .500 or better of the ’93 Cowboys and had 10 players named to the Pro Bowl. After ousting the emerging Packers in the NFC Championship Game, Dallas captured the franchise’s fifth championship thanks in large part to Larry Brown’s two Super Bowl interceptions.

24. 1977 Dallas Cowboys (12-2)

Ironically, we ranked the ’78 edition of the Cowboys higher, even though this team won the Super Bowl. By adding rookie Tony Dorsett to an offensive mix that included Roger Staubach in his prime, Dallas reached its fourth Super Bowl and won the big game for the second time. The Cowboys’ average margin of victory was 21.8 points in the postseason. It won its first eight games of the season and its last four. Dallas’ defense wasn’t as stout as it would be the following year, as it ranked eighth in points allowed, five spots lower than in ’78.

19. 1978 Dallas Cowboys (12-4)

Our highest-ranked losing team checks in ahead of 22 Super Bowl winners, and a good case could be made to rate it even higher. The Cowboys ranked No. 1 in points scored and No. 3 in fewest points allowed, and they narrowly lost to one of the greatest teams in NFL history in the Super Bowl. They boasted a star-studded roster which included nine players named to the Pro Bowl and four future Hall of Famers. Tony Dorsett rushed for his second-highest yardage total, and Roger Staubach compiled his second-highest total for touchdown passes. Jackie Smith’s third-quarter drop in the end zone led to Dallas settling for a field goal. What if …?

17. 1993 Dallas Cowboys (12-4)

The ’70s Steelers have their own wing at Canton, but it’s hard to argue that the early ’90s Cowboys aren’t the most talented team of all time, with the devastating Aikman-Smith-Irvin trio working behind a dominant offensive line (three of the team’s 11 Pro Bowlers). The Cowboys got off on the wrong foot, losing their first two games during Emmitt Smith’s holdout, but rebounded to lose just twice more. Despite the holdout, Smith gained 1,900 yards from scrimmage and Troy Aikman recorded the highest passer rating of his career (99.0). All three of their postseason victories were by double figures, including wins over a young Brett Favre and the Steve Young-led Niners in the NFC title game.

15. 1971 Dallas Cowboys (11-3)

The Cowboys and coach Tom Landry finally shook the “Next Year’s Champions” tag with a roster that included eight future Hall of Famers. Roger Staubach compiled a career-best passer rating, and the Cowboys won their last seven regular-season games after Landry made Staubach the unquestioned starter over Craig Morton. The receiving game included two Hall of Famers, Lance Alworth and Mike Ditka, and an Olympic gold medal sprinter, Bob Hayes. Dallas boasted the three-headed monster of Duane Thomas, Calvin Hill and Walt Garrison at running back. The defense got stingier as the season wore on, allowing an average of six points in three postseason games and holding Miami to 185 yards in the Super Bowl.

4. 1992 Dallas Cowboys (13-3)

The Cowboys returned to glory in a big way, forcing a Super Bowl-record nine turnovers in one of the big game’s biggest blowouts. This team boasted the NFL’s all-time leading rusher, Emmitt Smith, behind arguably the league’s best-ever offensive line. Dallas played defense, too, allowing the fewest yards in the league. Smith proved his 1991 breakout season was no fluke by topping 2,000 yards from scrimmage. Troy Aikman threw for career highs in yardage and touchdowns. The only knock against this team is its soft schedule, which is the sixth-easiest of any Super Bowl participant since the AFL-NFL merger. Although this team didn’t have the best record in the NFC, it toppled another powerhouse, 14-2 San Francisco, in the NFC Championship Game. The Super Bowl rout served as the culmination of the rebuilding project of Jerry Jones and Jimmy Johnson.

[tags] Dallas Cowboys, ESPN, Super Bowl [/tags]

Another Highlight Video, Just for Kicks

I’m thinking that this blogging stuff was made for times like these: rumors about why the old coach left, rumors about who will come in. But I quite simply have little interest in second-guessing others were are merely second-guessing themselves, so… I’ll just note that Jason Garrett is being given a look not only as […]

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Dear T.O.: Jerry Has 25 Million Reasons Why…

… you should worry more about your own ability than you should about how Bill Parcells hindered your performance: After sometimes going a week or two without talking to Bill Parcells during the season, wide receiver Terrell Owens said the coach’s retirement, which was announced Monday, was best for him and the Cowboys. “I am […]

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Videos: Parcells in a Nutshell

There are quite a few videos of Bill Parcells that would be fun to show, but I found three that I think provide a good sketch of the man as he relates to the Dallas Cowboys. (1) Tell me whether this demonstrates that Parcells is a Giants guy. I maintain that it does. This is […]

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Super Bowl XIII Airs Tonight

While the announcement of Bill Parcells’ retirement is going to be the subject of debate for some time, note that NFL Network is airing the full broadcast of Super Bowl XIII tonight. My copy is in such poor shape that parts of it are unwatchable, so I am very much looking forward to it. As […]

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No More Tuna Bashing

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 […]

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Is It Treasonous to Adopt a Team?

Just an open question to the Cowboys faithful: Is it an act of treason not only to root for another team but also to get emotionally behind them? If it is, my only saving grace is that due to some Patriots fans on the official Cowboys message board (e.g., here), I really wanted to see […]

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A Dallas Cowboys Mock Draft Index: Justin Blalock is the Early Leader

Here is a link to a list of the various mock draft sites. Dallas Cowboys Fan Zone also has a sticky thread focusing on mock drafts. Texas offensive guard Justin Blalock is the big winner thus far, with 16 of the 46 mock drafts guessing that he will be taken first. Another lineman, Levi Brown […]

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A Fine Kickholder Picture

I’ve been using the same boring avatar (below) all season, but thanks to The Botch by Tony Romo, I get to use a new one (see further below). Thanks also to my mother for sending this, which is rather ironic because she much preferred my role as a kickholder to other roles due to her […]

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