Dallas Cowboys looking for a turnaround with Jason Garrett
After going 1 for 7 as the 2010 season nears the half way point, Dallas Cowboys' coach Wade Phillips was fired by team owner Jerry Jones. Cowboys’ offensive coordinator, Jason Garrett has now been given the head coach job. Jones is hoping that the switch
could ‘affect a culture of change’ for the Cowboys who have apparently been playing worse each week.
The two men are as different as they can be. Defence was 63 year old Phillips’ niche whereas the 44 year old Garrett’s focus would be on the offense. Phillips had a lot of experience as head coach while this would be Garrett’s first time. Their personalities
are as different as their accolades and Jones hopes that the new leadership would reflect in better performance by the struggling Cowboys.
Garrett already has a plan for the Cowboys. In his first ever press conference as the head coach, he said that he would change the way things are done in Dallas and to win they have to focus on doing things the right way each day and each time. Not that
Phillips wasn’t a fan of the right approach. The difference might be that when things weren’t done the right way, Phillips didn’t take any action on that.
Fans were continuously frustrated by the fact that even though the Cowboys played terribly, the same starters continued to go back on the field week in and week out. Phillips defended his players and their strategy even when they were not performing. Garrett
would be wise not to repeat his predecessor’s mistakes and in the press conference, he gave the first indication that he wouldn’t do things the same way Phillips did.
“I think it has to be very clear as to what you expect from everyone in your organization, then hold them accountable to those expectations,” Garrett said. “We will do that on a daily basis.” Garrett has a soft temperament. Don’t expect him to be screaming
at the Cowboys from the sidelines, that is just not him. His father said that he had never seen Garrett angry, ever. But Garrett’s patience and levelheadedness should not be mistaken for a weakness. He has to be demanding and unforgiving if the Cowboys are
going to turn around anytime soon.
But, there is that one ticking question in everyone’s mind. Is Garrett really a change for the Cowboys? After all, he was part of the coaching team that put Dallas in the 1 win - 7 losses position in the first place. The answer lies in the numbers.
Offensively, Cowboys rank 10th in the league in terms of total yards per game. The strength of their offense is the pass. Cowboys’ 283 yards passing average ranks 4th best in the league. Their running game needs a lot of work. Under
Garrett, the Cowboys fell from being one of the best running side in the game to the worst. Overall, the offense is better than the 1-7 record the Cowboys have. Their real weakness is defence. With the 29 points allowed average in each game, the Cowboys rank
behind 30 other teams in the league. Garrett was doing his job somewhat decently; the defence was just not keeping up with the offense.
Team owner Jerry Jones thinks highly of Garrett. With the Cowboys, Garrett was one of the most highly paid assistant head coaches in the league and Jones gave him that contract to make sure he doesn’t go elsewhere.
Now, Garrett is the head coach at least until this season ends. That gives him 8 games to show what he is capable of. “All I can do is be who I am,” Garrett said. “I have things that I believe in. I have things that I'm convicted about. Many of them have
been on display over the last 3½ years, and some of them will be new and different based on this new responsibility that I do have.”