No matter where you look, there is speculation that Jason Garrett should be replaced as the head coach of the Dallas Cowboys. It makes perfect sense to question his future at Valley Ranch in light of an embarrassing loss on Monday night at the hands of the Chicago Bears and the inexplicable collapse against the Green Bay Packers on the following Sunday. Things are not well at Valley Ranch and it is logical to assume that the head coach will be held accountable. At this point, even the most die-hard Garrett supporters are questioning if he is the man who can restore the team to its glory years.
Still, there are two games remaining in the Cowboys 2013 season and it is not beyond the realm of possibility that the team could emerge as the eventual winner of the NFC East race. It behooves the team to set aside the speculation that they are being led by a lame duck coach and focus on doing what they can to salvage the season. Fortunately, there are signs that this is what they are doing. Jason Garrett's future is a topic that they are unwilling to speculate about, at least in the eye of the public.
Cornerback Brandon Carr was asked, following the Sunday evening collapse, if he thought that the team's performance would result in the firing of the head coach.
"I'm not worried about that right now. We're not in that situation. That's out of my control. We got two weeks to get this thing going and that's not even a question for me to answer." - Brandon Carr
Regardless of his personal thoughts on the issue, Carr is correct. The players need to remain steadfast in their focus on the upcoming games against the Washington Redskins and Philadelphia Eagles. Whatever is going to happen is secondary to the task at hand. The player's responsibility is to get ready to compete to the best of his ability and let the chips fall where they may.
Teammate Jason Witten refused to even broach the subject with reporters.
I’m not going there," Witten said. "I’m not going there."
It seems that the one person at Valley Ranch who is willing to discuss Garrett's future with the organization is the one who will ultimately make the decision. Owner Jerry Jones at first told the media that it was a topic that he was not willing to discuss. Of course this is Jerry Jones that we are talking about, so eventually the presence of microphones eventually got to him, and the face of the Cowboys reversed his previous stance. He began by stating his earlier refusal should not be taken as a sign of his intentions.
"Let me be real clear, my refusal to comment one way or the other is not in any way a change from anything that I’ve said earlier about Jason’s future as our coach. Let me be real clear, and that’s all I’m going to say about it." - Jerry Jones
Of course, it wasn't the last thing Jerry had to say. Reporters informed the septuagenarian owner that he was being given a chance to close the door on speculation that Garrett was on the hot seat, and it brought out the best in Jones.
"Don’t. Don’t. I don’t need a chance. I slammed that door back here, when was it, four weeks ago. That door was slammed. I don’t need another chance. And y’all shouldn’t ask for one every time you see me under any circumstances, whether we’ve had a bad practice or whether we’ve had, as we had today, a real disappointment."
Although Jones stated that a discussion of his intentions, as far as Jason Garrett is concerned, would be inappropriate, he did state that "He’ll coach that ballgame we’ve got coming up and as far as I can see in the future be coaching games for the Cowboys". Jones did conclude his comments by addressing the fact that feelings tend to swing back and forth based on the recent performance of the team.
"We’ve got an opportunity to sweep the East by playing the Redskins and by playing the Philadelphia Eagles, we’ll start with the Redskins, and if we do we’ll win the East. That was our first goal. Then y’all will be seeing me and asking me if I’m giving him a raise, an extension."
While Jerry is correct in his assessment of how emotions impact our perception, perhaps the time has come for a re-evaluation of who Garrett can offer the Cowboys. We can only wonder about what Jones will ultimately do, but at least we should not have to wonder for long.