In case you've been living in a cave for the last two weeks, the Dallas Cowboys have named Jason Garrett as the eighth football coach in the franchise's history. With that appointment, and Jerry Jones ceding some of the authority to the Red-Headed Genius, the questions of how this franchise will be shaped now ramp up. BTB staff has been bringing you the latest in the search to round out Garrett's coaching staff. JG plans to keep the offensive coordinator duties and is making changes to the staff on that side of the ball; letting Ray Sherman know that his services will no longer be needed. The defensive coordinator job is open for discussion, but the scheme is not. Jerry Jones has said repeatedly that the 3-4 is here in Dallas to stay for a while. With that, let's dive into three things that I've been left to wonder.
3) Is there a dynamic, innovative version of the 3-4, or hybrid defense, in the future of the Dallas Cowboys?
We have spent the last eight years under the guidance of some of the best old school 3-4 minds the game has seen. Bill Parcells and Wade Phillips have over 80 years combined experience and brought with them time-tested schemes. The problem for many Cowboys fans was that these schemes didn't resemble the game-altering style of Pittsburgh, a team that annually ranks at the top of the league in total defense, points allowed and turnovers. There were glimpses, but no sustained levels and it never truly passed the all important eye test. Which of the defensive coordinator candidates can bring this dynamic scheme to Big D? Fangio? Nolan? Someone yet to be discussed that should be getting talked about? And what ever happened to the Chaos package?
Follow the jump for more questions to ponder...
2) Do the Cowboys have any players currently on the roster that can become the next Doug Free?
Profootballfocus.com has released their season ending grades, and low and behold, Doug Free graded out as the best run blocking tackle in the NFL. A fourth round pick in the 2007 NFL Draft, Free worked diligently to move up the depth chart. Due to injuries, Free finally cracked the starting lineup on a consistent basis last year and graded out very well as Marc Columbo's replacement on the right side. This off-season, Dallas penciled him in to replace Flozell Adams and Free didn't miss a beat. Some might even say he's the best of our linemen already, ahead of such recognizable veteran names such as Leonard Davis and Andre Gurode. Do the Boys have anyone on the roster ready to make the same move? The candidates? Phil Costa, Jeremy Parnell, Sam Young, Robert Brewster, and Travis Bright. If you can get just one more 'Doug Free' out the current roster, sign one free agent and one high draft pick, the line could be fixed for the next few years rather easily.
1) Which offensive coaches does Garrett see as less than competent?
Those of us that are optimists generally take the stance that, although we try to educate ourselves as much as possible, the people in charge know more than us and will make the correct decisions to lead this team back to prominence. So who does Garrett find incapable of performing well in their roles? Remember, these are guys that have worked under him for years; how long has he felt this way about them? Did he want to make changes before but didn't have the authority? Rabblerousr has a great post about the start of the purge here. Dave recapped the coaching staffs here. What are Garrett's thoughts on line coach Hudson Houck? I know what mine are. What about Skip Peete? Maybe he's not too much of a fan of his brother John? The son of his former boss Wes Phillips? We'll see very soon.