Choose who you want to blame.
After the Cowboys turned in an unbelievably flat performance against the Titans that resulted in a loss, there are so many possible people/groups that deserve scorn. You can always go to the quarterback, Dak Prescott, who had two turnovers that were just killers. The Titans scored 14 points off of them. Prescott’s been up and down for a while now, but mostly down. You can blame Scott Linehan. His offense looked the same and predictable, even with a few rub routes thrown in. In this one, the defense deserves a little bit of blame after they repeatedly failed to get the Titans off the field on third down, even in long down and distance situations. Chidobe Awuzie was picked on again. The Cowboys offensive line had their bad moments again with some penalties and giving up pressure at key points. And somehow, Cole Beasley was practically invisible in all this. Heck, we can even serve up some responsibilities to the Cowboys front office who constructed this roster.
There are so many ways to go with the anger the Cowboys fanbase is feeling. But there is likely one man who is going to pay the price. That person is Jason Garrett. And he deserves it. This is his team, his coaching staff, his players - his failure. Garrett has done a lot of good things for the Cowboys. He has helped turn over an aging roster, helped get some kind of control over the salary cap, has generally kept the team competitive during his tenure. Thanks for that, Garrett. The problem is his teams just don’t win, not like they need to.
We spoke about how Dallas had all kinds of opportunity open to them as they headed into the game with the Titans. The NFC East was open for plunder if a team could get themselves on a run. Washington is falling apart with injury and Philadelphia is struggling to find their footing. Dallas was right there. The front office went out and added a weapon on offense, and made the move along the offensive line that Garrett wanted. It still didn’t matter.
Many will direct their criticisms at Scott Linehan. That’s legit, he failed miserably in this game. Some will say he’s failed for a while. In the end, though, he is Jason Garrett’s coordinator. Garrett is responsible for not forcing changes, not taking away the play-calling duties, doing anything he thought was necessary. Instead, the Cowboys came up looking the same as always. Woefully inept on offense.
No matter how much people might like or admire certain aspects about Jason Garrett, facts are facts about the performance of this team. He’s had a few incredible years during his tenure, but mostly it has been mediocre results. This year, it looks like it could be even worse.
Barring a miracle turnaround in Dallas this season, Jason Garrett’s time has run out. Now it is up to Jerry Jones to recognize that.