Cowboys book reveals Jerry Jones is 'averse to starting over with a new coach'
Jason Garrett has just one playoff win as the Cowboys coach, but he's never lacked for job security
Since the Dallas Cowboys won three Super Bowls in a span of four years under Jimmy Johnson and Barry Switzer, the team has maintained its "America's Team" prominence but failed to recapture any semblance of championship contention.
The days of Tony Romo and Wade Phillips at least produced a playoff victory, but otherwise, since 1995, the Cowboys have advanced in the postseason just three times. They've also missed the playoffs altogether in six of their last eight seasons
For most of those last eight seasons, Jason Garrett has been the head coach. The former Dallas quarterback is already the franchise's second longest-tenured man in that position since five-time NFC champion Tom Landry owned the sidelines for almost three decades starting in 1960. And Garrett hasn't exactly sported Landry's credentials, touting a .549 career winning percentage (69-55 through Week 4 of this year) to go along with just one career win in the playoffs.
After three straight 8-8 campaigns to start his tenure as Cowboys head coach, Garrett has guided Dallas to two divisional titles -- one in 2014 and another in 2016 -- only to lose in the divisional round in the playoffs both times. After a 9-7 finish in 2017 that left Dallas out of the postseason, the 'Boys are 2-2 to start 2018 with Garrett already assured of his job security by longtime team owner Jerry Jones.
And Jones' support of Garrett isn't likely to diminish anytime soon.
As former Dallas Morning News and New York Daily News writer Gary Myers explains in his new book, "How 'Bout Them Cowboys?" (available Oct. 9), nothing might be stronger within "America's Team" than Jones' commitment to employing a head coach who cannot rival his own voice in the organization:
Each year Garrett is near the top of the list of coaches on the hot seat. By early December of a down year, the rumors start that Jones is ready to fire him. That speculation is always followed by Jones issuing strong words of support. There seems to be a mandate at the beginning of every season that Garrett must get Dallas deep into the playoffs to keep his job. But he is a survivor. Jones likes him and is averse to starting over with a new coach. He is comfortable with Garrett and may think this is as close as he will ever get to adding head coach to his many titles.
If Jones has not come down from his owner's suite to put on the headset by now, it's not going to happen. "I don't think he ever felt he could coach the team," former Cowboys fullback Daryl Johnston said. "The thing about him that people have to understand is that he has made good decisions and poor decisions throughout his tenure as the owner, president and general manager of the team, but all he wants to do is win. That's all he wants to do. Sometimes it impacts his decision-making process, but we always knew it came from a good spot."
After his four years with (Bill) Parcells, it's clear Jones has shied away from bringing in another powerful coach. (Wade) Phillips had already been a head coach in Buffalo and Denver and an interim head coach in New Orleans and Atlanta when Jones hired him. He was just happy to have the job. Phillips is an excellent defensive coach but has been more successful as a coordinator than a head coach. Jones fired him in the middle of his fourth season in 2010 and promoted Garrett, who had been the offensive coordinator. Garrett is second in longevity as the Cowboys' head coach behind (Tom) Landry. Jones is very comfortable with him ...
Excerpted from "How 'Bout Them Cowboys?: Inside the Huddle with the Stars and Legends of America's Team." Copyright © 2018 by Gary Myers. Republished with permission of Grand Central Publishing. All rights reserved.
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