Forget all the talk about how much power Jason Garrett will have and how much Jerry Jones is changing. Forget about the makeup of the coaching staff, what players will be axed in the coming weeks and months, forget about draft picks and free agents. Well, don't forget about all that, just set it aside for a moment. There's one thing, though, in all the chatter that was today's press conference and what's yet to come, that you should remember.
That was Jason Garrett talking about being physical, practicing physical, and doing things the Cowboy Way.
Jason Garrett and his staff did a lot of good things when they took over, but I don't think any single thing was as important as putting the pads on in practice on Wednesdays, and picking up the tempo and physicality in their practices. Garrett made it clear today that these kinds of practices would continue; I don't think the players are going to like training camp very much this year.
We spent a lot of time speculating about why the running game was dormant when Jason Garrett was offensive coordinator, then came to life (somewhat) when he took over as head coach. I ventured theories, others voiced their ideas, but in the end it was probably very simple.
Garrett saw how this team practiced. He saw how ineffective the running game was, and gave up on it. He knew what was wrong, he knew he couldn't fix it. He couldn't put the team in pads and change the practices like he wanted. Although I wavered in the past on how hard teams should practice, and how often they should put on pads, I've become a re-convert to the physical. The Garrett Way is now the Cowboy Way.
Garrett talked about the Cowboy Way today, meaning the way the teams in the 90s prepared for football. He talked about how those Cowboys teams earned their championships in training camp. He talked about players who had the work ethic needed to win, and had the ability to transfer that work into great practices. Those practices were part of the process, and the results were wins.
Jason Garret talks a lot about process, he talks a lot about being great everyday. He might not have taught the Dallas players to be great everyday - yet - but he did get their attention on Wednesdays. Football is a physical game, you have to prepare physically to play it well.