To Gurode or not...
There's a ton of discussion on topic already, but...
Strictly for the recalcitrant and proven hard learners:
1. The character of this team started THREE off seasons ago - and under the direction of JERRY JONES. The team decided upon functional character aspects that would or would NOT be tolerated on the field and IN THE LOCKERROOM. That was the cutting of Roy Williams, Greg Ellis, Tank Johnson, Pac Man Jones, TO...and then the team departed with Flozell Adams.
Next, Jerry had to make a decision as to head of the coaching staff, when the team turned **** up with the group of former All Pro's that were holding starting positions as well as huge cap amounts hostage.
At the start of the NFL year this season, the Cowboys then released money cows, with little production, in the form of Marion Barber, Roy Williams II, Leonard Davis, as well as Marc Colombo.
This again, was a JOINT decision, involving both Jerry Jones, the GM, and Jason Garrett, the new head coach.
But it is now very evident, and facts presented now mute, that Jason Garrett is at the helm of this Cowboys' ship. He has further made decisions upon level of commitment required and demonstrated upon the field...as well as what type of play will receive merit and consideration.
But this involves concepts, not hide underneath a mushroom shell for understanding - what if something went boo in the dark approach. I'm STILL not afraid of the boogie man in the dark.
Explaining, and not leaving for someone else to connect dots....
With a complete line of large and past mobile linemen, opponents merely increased the attack upon that immobility and would overload, misdirect, and blitz those same linemen. The effect was that they WERE consistently defeated at their flanks and overrushed in mass.
It didn't matter if they were former All Pros...as when two seasons ago the Cowboys had NINE All Pros from three years ago. They were now exploitable...AND WERE.
If one is looking for protection from what is now over four seasons ago...hey, keep on hiding underneath that Mushroom. Yea, there is a Magical Mysitcal Tour there for sure.
Not only was every team in the NFL exploiting that relationship and role, but it was forging team directions as well.
Know why the team just didn't leap out there when free agency happened this NFL year, once the Lockout was called off and a CBA arrived at? Well, there was an accumulated cap hit that restricted ABILITY to do just that. It wasn't from bad decisions from Jerry, or a 'rook' head coach, Garrett, making and pulling wrong strings.
The need to make the commitment in cap changes was propelled by proof over the past TWO SEASONS that those players were NOT doing the complete job on the field. Period.
The team made a decision based upon SCHEME and guidelines of the head coach. I posted a thread upon just this...and wasn't visited by yourself, TwoDeep, that expanded upon the principal.
2. Jason Garrett, not Jerry Jones, wants a balanced attack. He WILL attain a reliable run game that shows up on game day. To accomplish this, Jason doesn't care if that player is mountain side huge, or not, but mobile and articulate in execution of direction and down field technique. The running game is important.
Before releasing Andre Gurode, first, the team had to determine just where he was right now, as a player. Since he came to Camp, recovering from a self scheduled knee operation, the team just couldn't up and cut him without a settlement complication. The team then gave him a week to show where he was as a player...and lo and behold, he was where he was over the past two seasons. That no longer being an acceptable standard under the newly established parameters by JASON GARRETT.
But to the Cowboys' credit, they first required that a replacement, capable to fill the job function, was available. See, I used a positional comparison...and didn't fly underneath that Mushroom and compare back to an All Pro status earned four seasons ago with Andre Gurode. As there are now multiple players that can fill in on a NFL level solidly. This would now include: Phil Costa, David Arkin, Bill Nagy, and yea, even undrafted Kevin Kowalski.
With changes, even with a single positional adjustment, there are problems. Well, there are problems with youth just as there are with over-the-hill gangs also. That is part of the price for change. YOU HAVE TO SEE THEM IN PROGRESS....
But even here, the Cowboys, showing balls of steel, hedged their bets there as well.
3. These personnel cuts have created the very environment that will allow FOR A CHANGE. Don't look now, but under last year's protection, Tony Romo was only injured and out for over half of the past season.
But going by demonstrated, and no longer just projected comparison, this Exhibition season has shown that this group of 'rooks' at least belong in the league, and not enjoying former memories while holding the team's real progress in randsom.
But carrying that a step further...next season, there is a projected $20 +M in dead cap burden. The one time ability to leave that behind this season, has come to the forefront. The additional amounts of money, with the recent departures and even an upcoming and projected by myself, release of Igor Olshansky, will push the credit given this year, to about $13-14 M. That makes next season's Cap figures very manageable. Even for player and future acquisitions.
I find it rather humorous that explanation of the current status in the secondary was requested in addition...
The Cowboys ONLY attempted to buy the services of Nnamdi Asumghua. That would have changed things completely back there. But Nnamdi wanted to be an Eagle! Ha....so be it.
But that didn't dilute what was in the Dallas secondary already. Dallas was able to put together a pair of solid safeties on a single year deal. They will have to now prove their own metal and where they belong. That isn't a bad thing. It retains the aspect of unburdened change. The Cowboys, with the current cap credits, are in position to either reup Abram Elam and Gerald Sensabaugh or acquire another player or two.
Then on the cornerback front...this is a transitional year for Terrence Newman. Just cutting to the bone here, he probably goes elsewhere and seeks a better contract next season. But if he expects to stay in Dallas, and be a loyal and committed Cowboy, then the format is now established, that you get only what you earn now.
See here, JERRY, HAS LEARNED.
Orlando Scandrick has shown that he is committed. He has shown that he is physical. And now in his fourth season, he has shown that he deserves the opportunity, since coming up through the Dallas Organization, to try his own wings out in the secondary. Candidly, he is very strong in coverage and always is a shadow on his receiver.
Scandrick establishes one of a pair into the future. But there then is Mike Jenkins. He is fully upon the bubble, but armed with prior knowledge of where things lie organizationally, now. mUe
Throwing around just prior All Pro labels, that would hit Jenkins also. But we all now know, a former label just doesn't cut the direction upon the ironing board right now. The iron is now hot, and is going to be used. Just like Elam and Sensabaugh, he is on a ONE year leash as well. If he earns keep, then he will be kept and projected into the future. That's how GOOD Franchises do things in today's NFL. But that includes both Jerry Jones and Jason Garrett as forging directions in the NOW. He will have to earn it, the old fashioned, and Cowboy way.
4. But that brings us to the concept of management of change. That IS exactly what is occurring even with the release of Gurode as well will probably be the course for Olshansky.
With the direction established for the other positional groups now, the team has complete freedom to make changes in the secondary, if needed, next season. The rest of the team, with exception to possibly the defensive line, is solid. I'll await judgement on them, until the real season kicks off and a full starting unit is on the carpet with the defense.
With this season's cap relief, the team can pursue some remedies in the secondary next season, via FREE AGENCY. It also, since direction is firm in other positional groups, able to hit the draft and maneuver up to get a pair for the secondary there as well.
So, instead of rushing underneath that mushroom but one more time, at least see there will still be some very fertile play going on this year. But, for the record, opportunity for change does exist strongly into the very next season, with ability, NOW, to make changes.
No, it's not stupid 'ol Jerry. But the team is now, very competitive.
Don't look now, but that under-the-hill gang that people are rushing underneath a mushroom for, are showing that they can actually run the ball. They are more precise, agile, AND aggressive in their blocking. They go until the whistle blows..and occasionaly draw a flag for going beyond the whistle. But that is a good thing. As is the reason they project for change. That being their youth itself. They have an excitement to them, and that is a PRIME element to achieving with change.
Now Cowboys fans, you and I both know, especially those of you who were a fan of the Dallas Cowboys all the way through the Star War Periods of the internet. But for now, don't pour water on those embers below.
For both Jerry Jones, yea both the owner and GM, and the team, the Dallas Cowboys, are on the right path. And as long as the offense projects to be a league leader, in both running the ball and throwing it, as well as scoring....they ARE in the mix. But here, we all know with a nucleus firmly established in youth, they project up...NOT DOWN.