Quite simply, I find this team disgusting. Every damn game is loaded with at least 7 penalties. To elaborate, every game has at least two, untimely false starts on offense and at least one off-sides on the defense. Every game Romo throws at least one pick, (and oftentimes two). Every game the team is out coached severely by it’s opponent and only manages to get wins because they’re usually more talented than the team across from them.
Last year I believed that Jason Garrett was on his way to being the next great head coach in this league. Not anymore. Watching the Cowboys play I get a strong sense that Garrett does not believe his receivers should ever be in motion, or run a 5 yard out when the coverage is off, (or a 5-yard curl for the matter). I get the feeling that in Garrett’s book it is a sin to ever consider running a bubble screen, or line his receivers up in a bunch formation. He just seems unwilling or more correctly incapable of designing something that is remotely complex. When it comes to the Cowboys the opposing coordinators never have to worry about seeing anything that they haven’t already seen on film.
Worst of all I feel like a sucker for having believed in this team, (and more importantly the coaching staff).
In the last few weeks I actually allowed myself to believe that Wade Phillips had finally discovered a solid method for coaching this team. The defense had looked outstanding but finally broke on the Ravens first 70+-yard TD. Once the Cowboys had cut the score to 26-24; I had confidence that they would hold the Ravens to 3 and out (leaving the offense about 50 seconds to a minute to get into field goal range) since they had all 3 timeouts to work with. That was until I saw that Wade had put the exact same package and the exact same formation on the field that had just been burned. I screamed at the television, “Wade what the f__k are you doing,” just before the ball was snapped. Sure enough, a moment later, the Ravens were off to the races.
Now lots of people will say that it’s the players who play the game they should just simply make the plays. But people who say this vastly underestimate the coach’s impact on a game. It is the coach’s job to put each player into a situation where they can make plays. Consider this, the players do not design the plays. The players do not call the plays. The players do not look at all of the film to develop the game plan. The players do not decide when to practice in pads and when not to, or when to rest someone and when not to, or when to make substitutions or when not to, or when to play zone or when not to.
You get the idea.
Yesterday I happened to watch the “Super Bowl Champions” series on the NFL network that covered the 3 Super Bowl title teams of the 90’s. Jimmy Johnson did such an incredible job of having his teams prepared for the biggest games. He was involved with every level of the team, from game planning to drills and he surrounded himself with an outstanding group of assistants. These Cowboys may have all the talent of those 90’s teams but they have nowhere near the teachers or schemers.
Jerry, if you ever want your team to win another Super Bowl you have got to bring in an excellent coaching staff, (much like the one you let get away to Miami). Not just an adequate one. A franchise only lucks out once in a lifetime by winning a Super Bowl despite its coaching staff; and that already happened for your franchise in 95/96 when your team won despite Barry Switzer. Lightning does not strike twice Jerry. Sorry.