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Is Garrett Jerry's Landry? Eight Things We're Thinking About Cowboys Type Things

Is Garrett Jerry's Landry? D-Law might win for losing. Cowboys looking a lot like 1991. Just three of the things we've been thinking about recently.

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Random thoughts, musings and wildly hyperbolic postulations from the BTB writers as we prepare for the Monday-nighter against the nameless team from the nation's capital.


The Rooster is strong in this one...

Dawn Macelli: After writing a series of posts titled "The Way Of The Rooster" it is obvious that I bought in to Garrett's management philosophy. I have seen his approach work many times over in the business world, and I was sure that he would be able to make the same approach work with the Dallas Cowboys. I know that the whole process would take time to implement, and my biggest concern was would it happen fast enough. For me it is gratifying to see the coach seeing his efforts come to fruition, now I am looking forward to seeing just how far Garrett will be able to lead this team.

Tom Ryle: It took almost four full seasons as the head coach of the Cowboys, but Jason Garrett has finally created what he intended to. He has a team where the bottom of the roster players have just as much invested in succeeding as the superstars, and where the superstars work at improving themselves just like the players who are not sure they will still be with the team next week. He has a group of assistant coaches who are all marching in step with him. And he has the owner/GM's ear and trust. Garrett always believed that, if he could just get all the parts in place and installed, the winning would come. But he was going to have to remake the culture, the roster, and just about everything about how the Dallas Cowboys went about their business.

He has built it, and the wins have come.

O.C.C.: With a .556 win percentage as a head coach, Jason Garrett is currently tied with Jimmy Johnson and Brian Billick, two Super Bowl winning coaches. If the Cowboys were to win the next two games - which is by no means certain given that Arizona is looming on the schedule - Jason Garrett's win percentage as a head coach would improve to 37-28, a .569 win percentage. That would move him past Hall of Famers Chuck Knoll and Mike Ditka, as well as Wade Philips, Jim Caldwell, and John Fox. A third consecutive win, over the Jaguars in London, would move Garrett ahead of Bill Parcells and Don Coryell.

Active coaches Garret has passed during his 6-1 start to the 2014 season: Ron Rivera, Jeff Fisher, Tom Coughlin, Lovie Smith.

Think about that.

Can The Rooster sustain?

Kegbearer: How strong is the grip of Jason Garrett's process on the players? How committed are the "no name" defenders to proving themselves to Rod Marinelli? How powerful is the team bond and players' belief in each other? The Cowboys will likely be sitting on top the league rankings for a while, and a more weak-willed team runs the risk of eating the cheese and media hype and taking their foot off the gas during their preparations.

Personally, as my sig has read for a few years, I am a true believer of the Jason Garrett process. I don't think his team falls victim to the complacency that appeared to cripple the 2010 team that was thinking about a hometown Super Bowl instead of trying to be great every day. There may still be some questions on the talent level and ability to stay healthy for players on this roster, but I feel safe in knowing the culture and identity of this team will not allow the players to get drunk on their own success. Cowboys Nation may be giddy about how highly the team is being ranked by the pundits...but I think this team will not allow it to become a detriment, nor allow a basement dwelling division rival like WAS to become a trap game.

Thinking of Landry...

Coach Gary: My general thinking is what Tom Landry used to say (paraphrasing here): The season is about two things, winning streaks and going into the playoffs on a hot streak.

Expecting both to happen this year...

Can D-Law turn lemons into lemonade?

Joey Ickes: I think DeMarcus Lawrence may wind up being better off this year for having missed the first eight games.

He has now had approximately three months worth of time to develop his upper body, which is longer than the typical off season program in the NFL. In fact, that's what he told reporters recently:
"I feel like I put on at least 10 pounds basically just working out every day. That’s all I could do," Lawrence said. "I feel like I’ve gotten a lot stronger and in some way I feel like I ain’t lost my step either. It’s a good feeling I have about coming back."
Considering most players make their biggest physical leap from year one to year two, I'm wondering if this may come early for D-Law.

Additionally, the maximum number of games he will play this season is 12 (eight regular season games, Wild Card, Division, NFC Champ, Super Bowl). Which is the equivalent of a typical college season, meaning that in the stretch run of this year, there should be no rookie wall for the Tank to run into.

Party like Its 1991...

Rabblerousr: With the way our Beloved 'Boys have been playing of late, there has been a lot of talk comparing them to the 90s Cowboys, largely because both squads featured a dominant offensive line, great running game and a set of playmakers at the quarterback, receiver and running back positions.

I'm thinking 90s, too - but the 1991 version. That team, like this one, had a first-year offensive coordinator, Norv Turner, who was instrumental in developing its offensive playmakers (Michael Irvin led the league in receiving yards; Emmitt Smith won the first of his rushing titles; Troy Aikman was second in the league in completion percentage). More germane, however, is that the 1991 Cowboys defense was an under-talented, try-hard group that played well despite struggling to rush the passer. They finished with 23 sacks, the lowest single-season total in team history.

That record is in danger of being eclipsed in 2014, by a Cowboys defense that has many of the same traits - and a mere seven sacks in seven games. In 1992, of course, Dallas traded for Charles Haley, who proved to be the dynamic pass rusher that the defense needed, and they were off to the races. As I watch this team, I can't help but think they, like the 1991 version, are a dynamic pass rusher away from true contention.

Cowboys built to win (big)...

Neithan2000: Last year Dallas only won three games by double digits for the entire season, they have already won three games by double digits in the first seven contests this year. We've talked about one of the hallmarks of a good team being the ability to avoid close games; right now Dallas is showing that ability, which bodes well for future success.

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