There is a lot of unknown entering Sunday’s Dallas Cowboys game. It’s a weird situation.
Of course, this is a situation that the Cowboys created for themselves. They enter Week 17’s date against the Washington Redskins needing a victory as well as one from the New York Giants over the Philadelphia Eagles if they want to be NFC East Champions. If those two things don’t happen, their season will end.
And what if the Cowboys have to condense their lockers to trash bags next Monday? Obviously a lot of things will change but it’s possible that among those lie things of serious significant for the franchise. It’s possible that four longtime members could be competing for the last time as members of America’s Team on Sunday.
Stating the obvious... Jason Garrett
It’s very possible, some would say more probable than not, that Jason Garrett is in his final days with the Dallas Cowboys (assuming no division title).
If and when this is proven to be true it will mark the end of a nine-year run as the team’s full-time head coach, a stretch that provided five seasons with at least eight losses.
Garrett was asked when he thinks about his future during his Thursday press conference and responded “I guess at some point in the future” which really describes the rock and hard place that we have been in all season long. This has felt inevitable and it’s time to finally get there.
Pretty obvious... Jason Witten
Jason Witten returned to the Cowboys after a year away and his comeback has been, well, it’s been something.
You have to wonder if Witten feels like it was worth it. The broadcast booth was clearly not the right place for him, but in re-joining the Cowboys it feels like all he accomplished was experiencing a really frustrating season while seeing his reputation dwindle a bit. Witten has been a lesser player this year than he has been in the past and a lot of fans have called for him to see less time as the weeks have gone on.
Remember when Witten initially retired? There was practically a parade at The Star in Frisco and he was treated to a celebration fit for the franchise legend that he is. In returning and likely not going out with Super Bowl confetti over his shoulder (in fact quite the opposite), Witten has without question added a new and questionable chapter to an otherwise incredible book.
Just about obvious... Sean Lee
The General re-structured his deal to return to the Cowboys this season and had the season that Jason Witten probably wanted when he came back. Sean Lee has had incredibly bright moments filling in for Leighton Vander Esch, but he’s also looked old at other times. That’s what happens when you get older.
We’ve known for over a year now that the future is set for the Cowboys at linebacker, and while that has fallen into some doubt over the last month or so, it still remains true that Sean Lee is likely not part of what will be happening to the position group in 2020. He has spent about half as long with the team as Jason Witten has, but almost all of his career has been spent playing for Jason Garrett (his rookie season was 2010 when Garrett took over midway before being fully promoted).
Jason Witten will without question find himself in the Pro Football Hall of Fame one day, and he will also be in the Ring of Honor. Sean Lee is certainly eligible for the latter but it will remain to be seen if he’ll ever see his name decorate it.
You never know... L.P. Ladouceur
L.P. has been long-snapping for the Cowboys basically since dinosaurs roamed the earth. He, like Jason Witten, dates back long enough with the team that he actually had a locker, ran out of the tunnel, and played games at Texas Stadium. That’s quite a long time ago.
One has to wonder if he’s finally had enough one-year deals and if 2019 is the year that he ultimately decides to move on from the NFL.
Dallas already moved on from Dan Bailey almost two years ago now, parted ways with his replacement Brett Maher, and have seen punter Chris Jones struggle throughout this season. It’s possible that their entire special teams group looks very different in 2020, long-snapper among the changes.