Sometimes, the news is dominated by one or two stories. And you thought it would be dull with the Cowboys out of the playoffs! Only two days after the end of the season, there was a flurry of activity at Valley Ranch.
The interwebs were lit up on Tuesday as the Dallas Cowboys moved quickly to start getting the coaching staff back under contract. For those who may not follow the inner workings of the team with the same obsessive compulsion many of us do, Jason Garett and most of the key assistant coaches were all on contracts that expired when the 2014 season ended. This was a deliberate strategy by Jerry Jones. It made this a make or break year for the entire staff and provided the ability to clean house if things went south. But when the season turned out much better than anyone expected, suddenly those coaches were set to cash in. Jones had his checkbook out, and although the deals have not been formally announced, all reports are that Garett and defensive coordinator Rod Marinelli are done. There are also multiple sources on Twitter and elsewhere reporting that offensive play-caller Scott Linehan is also nearly done, and my be holding up primarily to find out whether Bill Callahan will return or seek another job.
With the uncertainty over what was going to happen with the Cowboys coaches, the NFL had a problem, since they were supposed to be the NFC's staff in the Pro Bowl because they were the highest seeded team to be eliminated during the Divisional Round. But the announcements today have resolved that.
No new contracts have officially been announced, but Jason Garrett and the Cowboys coaching staff will participate in the 2015 Pro Bowl, the league announced Tuesday.
Garrett and his coaching staff will be assigned to coach one of the two Pro Bowl teams through the Pro Bowl Draft, which will see Hall of Fame wide receivers Michael Irvin and Cris Carter select opposing all-star teams for the game, set to be played Jan. 25 at University of Phoenix Stadium in Glendale, Ariz.
The AFC staff will be that of the Baltimore Ravens, who had to take the place of the Denver Broncos. Denver parted ways with head coach John Fox, and told the rest of the staff to start looking for jobs elsewhere.
The coaching staff moves are not the only decisions that the team made. All but two members of the practice squad have been signed to futures contract (basically a deal to make sure they are around to try to make the 53 man roster).
The only members of the practice squad not to re-sign yet are defensive tackle Davon Coleman and cornerback Micah Pellerin, who both saw time on the active roster during the season.
They will probably be offered later.
Of the players who have been signed from the practice squad, Ryan Williams is probably the one that is of most interest to the fan base, given the doubt about whether the team can re-sign DeMarco Murray.
According to NFL.com reporter Ian Rapoport the team has made an offer that doesn't exactly fall into the category of one that cannot be refused.
At last check, Dallas had a four-year deal worth slightly more than $16 million on the table, according to Rapoport.
This is a different kind of issue for the Cowboys. Brandon Carr was seen as grossly underperforming his high dollar contract, but came on strong late in the season.
They also have a decision to make on cornerback Brandon Carr, who is scheduled to count $12.717 million against the cap in 2015 and pull down an $8 million base salary.
"We have to cross that bridge when we get there," Carr said when asked about his future on Monday.
One possibility is trying to get him to take a Doug Free type reduced contract.
Last season might have been even better if Tony Romo had been more ready for the first game of the season, but he was still recovering from offseason surgery. Things might be better this time around.
When asked Tuesday if Romo needed surgery this offseason considering the wear and tear he's had, Cowboys coach Jason Garrett responded, "I don't think so."
Another thing that may change this year: No more Romo Wednesday, based on Garrett's take on how Romo may come back this year.
"You hear a lot of people talk about if someone has an ACL surgery on the knee, they come back the first year, but it's really that second year where they are really back to being themselves," Garrett said. "With Tony, he did such a great job getting through last off-season and training camp and over the course of this season battling and getting himself right to play his best football and I do think just getting back into this off-season and have it be more normal."
With free agency coming up, you might want to bookmark this list of available free agents.
And the draft is coming up, so it is time to start looking for possible targets for the Cowboys.