We brought you the overview as quickly as possible, now it's time to dive into the meat and potatoes of what we all hope will be the transcendent press conference of the Jerry Jones era. Jerry took the opportunity to host the presser at Cowboys Stadium, instead of at Valley Ranch. Obviously salesman Jerry wants to showcase his arena as much as possible, but just maybe there were bigger forces here. Maybe this will be the last time Jerry announces a new head coach.
When Jimmy Johnson was brought on, the Internet didn't exist as it does today. When Switzer and Gailey and Campo were brought on board, the amount of access worldwide fans had was still limited. When Parcells was brought in, most believed we were righting the ship, but unfortunately things didn't work out that way. When Wade Phillips was hired, Cowboys Kingdom let out a collective groan of, 'Well let's see if this is going to be different.'
Now there is Jason Garrett, the eighth head coach in the history of the Dallas Cowboys.
Again, these are summaries, aiming to be as close to accurate as possible, but not always direct quotes.
Jason Garret is the head coach of the Dallas Cowboys. Hes the third man to take this job with a winning record while directing an NFL team as head coach. Hes the 2nd man to take the job of the head coach of the DC that hasplayed in the NFL. He's the , 1st man, to take on this responsibility who played for the Cowboys. He's truly one of our own. We know him well, for the qualifications he has for this position. I know that he has sent his entire life preparing for this day, and he's well qualified.
The profile that I was lookin for and thinking about, our head coach, is someone that has tremendous drive and energy. Someone that can communicate effectively with today's players. Someone that command the respect of the team, in the meeting room, the locker room and on the field. Someone that has walked in the same shoes as the player he will coach. Someone that spends every waking moment thinking what he can do to make the Dallas Cowboys ootball team the best they can be. Though our 2010 season didn't play out in a manner that we would've liked, it did give us the opportunity to evaluate Jason Garrett under pressure. He passed the test. He has my respect. That says it all right there. Ladies and gentlemen, new coach of the Dallas Cowboys, Jason Garrett.
Follow the jump for Jason Garrett's introduction and the Q&A segment with the local media.
Thank you- I'd like to thank Mr. Jones and the entire Jones family for this opportunity. I'm very familiar with this organization, having played here, having been an assistant coach here, and for the last half of the season, being the interim head coach. I have trememoundous respect , appreciation, for the history and tradition that goes with this organization and for all the great coaches, players and teams that have gone before us. It's my job as head coach of the football team to do everything I can, each and every day, to put my best foot forward, so we can put our best foot forward, to get the cowboys back to the level that we're capable of being. I was fortunate to be on teams here in the ‘90s that went to the top of the National Football League. .. were the best. I understand how those teams played. I like to refer to it as the Cowboy Way. When I think about those teams, and the level we played at, and how we went about it each and every day, those are some of the models that I think about for this football team. And again, we're going to work very hard each and every day to try and get back to that level.
My emotions this week are very similar to when named interim head coach. That decision was made on a Monday afternoon, we were playing the new york football giants on Sunday at 415. by Wednesday morning we had to get to work. That's where we are right now. It's time to get to work .
When asked about passing up the opportunities to be head coach of other franchises:
I think there were probably a number of reasons, I had great visits about their positions, appreciate those opportunities. You make decisions intellectually... with your gut with your instincts, it just felt like it was the right thing to stay with the Cowboys. I'm certainly very pleased with the outcome.
When asked about playing and coaching elsewhere, weaving those ideas into the Cowboys culture.
I had a great experience as a player, 8 years in the 90s. One of the hardest decisions I made was to leave this organization. I consider those 8 years away from this organization very valuable to my development as a coach. Had a chance to learn a great deal from the various coaches and teams.
Asked about what is left to change about the organization that he hasn't already.
I think anytime you come into a situation in the middle of the season, there's some things you want to change, some things you want to implement and we did that, quickly. Great respect for our players and our coaches, for allowing those changes to happen, it's hard to do... I have great appreciation for the approach that everyone took. But as the off-season unfolds, and we continue to evaluate the way we do things, who we do things with, we'll continue to make some changes to get it the way we need to get it.
What are your plans for the coaching staff?
No real plans yet. We'll evaluate everything, we started to do that with the players this week. We'll evaluate our systems of offensive and defensive football, how we handle our special teams. With that comes the evaluation of coaches and understanding that there's always change in the NFL at the coaching level and we have to respond to some of those changes.
Will you be the offensive coordinator?
How will your relationship change with Jerry?
First of all I have a tremendous amount of respect for him. They'll eventually write a history of the NFL, and the chapters gonna be pretty big about Jerry Jones. The impact he's made on this league has been significant. On peoples lives have been significant. I understood as a player the level of commitment he's put into this thing... There is great respect there, a very high standard that is set. That's the only way to do it... We appreciate his commitment to winning.
The responsibilities you have are different. the opportunities you have to be involved in the decisions are different. I've always told him what I thought about everything. When your head coach, now you're privy to different kinds of decisions.
When did this become your dream job?
One of the things I talk about with our players all the time is appreciate the opportunity. I always put it out of my mind, because I wanted to play, even at 38. When I realized I couldn't play anymore the natural progression was to coach. I went about coaching the same way I went about playing, kind of focus on the day and be the best that I could be.
How quickly do you think you can get this team back in the Super Bowl?
This is a competitive league; it's a bottom line league... We have expectations for ourselves about how we go about this. Only expectations we talk about have to do with our approach, what we do everyday. Our expectations are to be the best we can be, each and every day. It was more about the way those guys went about doing it (the 90's teams) all those guys showed me on a daily basis, how to go about it. Maximizing the opportunities and the potential you have.
As you approach the off-season and training camp, will you continue the ‘padded' practice?
Absolutely, it's a physical game. You have to practice being physical in order to be physcial Sunday afternoon and we'll practice that.
I believe you have to earn it in training camp... You gotta go to work. You lay the foundation for your football team in training camp. It will be a phsycial demanding training camp, we're gonna practice hard. When we come out of it, we'll be ready to embark on the challenges of a 16 game season.
This was the biggest indictment of the previous regime that you are going to find in this presser.
When asked about the power to fill out the staff, Jerry Jones quickly jumped in...
Jerry: Jason will have the final say on any person that leaves the coaching staff or comes to the coaching stadf. There wont be a player on this team that Jason does not want on the team. I wanna be real clear, we're gonna operate on the basis that he has the final say of any person thats on the staff, or joining the staff and there won't be a player on this team that Jason hasn't approved of. I think we've had critiscism in the past, or maybe some ambiguity, are we clear with that? What I just said? I want you to understand the confidence I have.
Jason: I think any good organization does a great job communicating. Among coaches, among players, among departments. I feel like I have great communication with Jerry, with Stephen. We have very similar football values. It's important that you have guys you feel very good about coaching with you, playing for you.
How important is it for the head coach to have hand picked guys for his staff?
It's important to have guys that you feel very good about coaching your team, playing for your team.
This was a great question, and you could see Jason grasped the relevance that he was named to the staff before Wade Phillips was brought on board and his response would be a denouncement to how he was brought back to the organization.
When asked about if all this was discussed before he signed the contract (power of the position)
Absolutely . I feel great about the relationship I have and how we make decisions. Daily decisions and bigger decisions. We'll do a great job sorting things out, discussing things, working through the pros and cons of any particular decision, and then come to conclusions. I feel great about that relationship.
Jerry took to the podium after this and offered up some of his usual Jerry talk, and maybe it's the eternal optimist in me, but it just sounded like Jerry has been listening. We'll dive into that in a later column. For now, discuss these juicy tidbits.
If you'd like to view the full press conference, go to the mothership here.