Jones: No Issues on Coaching Front

While the Cowboys looked to be the better team in Week 1, a big coaching blunder contributed to them losing to the Redskins. However, Jerry Jones says the chain of command in Dallas is intact.

Team owner Jerry Jones made it clear that there is no confusion in the team's hierarchy when it comes to coach Wade Phillips and offensive coordinator Jason Garrett.

He said Phillips has ultimate veto power over any play Garrett calls.

"He has more than that," Jones said. "He certainly does rely and depend and delegate to Jason regarding the offensive play-calling. Let's make that real [clear]. Wade can call anything he wants to out there, or stop any call."

This became an issue in the wake of the Cowboys' disappointing season-opening 13-7 loss to Washington, when a costly coaching decision late in the first half led directly to a Redskins touchdown.

With four seconds left in the half and the Cowboys backed up to their 36 after a holding penalty, Garrett did not nix the Hail Mary pass he had called before the penalty. Phillips didn't step in to kill the play, either.

Phillips and Garrett have both taken responsibility for the disaster that ensued.

Tony Romo threw a desperation pass in the flat to running back Tashard Choice, who fumbled. Redskins cornerback DeAngelo Hall picked up the fumble and returned it 36 yards for a touchdown.


Jason Garrett
Joe Robbins/Getty

"I think that it was pretty clear that we should have taken a knee," Jones said. "That's clear. Jason gave his reason for calling the play. That was a mistake. And so, I don't know if you can call it confusion as much as making a mistake. Certainly, Wade has the ability at any time to stop the music and make the call if he wants to make the call. We all logically know the consequences of that. That didn't happen, so it's what it is. I'm not concerned about it being some type of pattern."

Jones said Phillips came up to him after the game and said he should have overruled the call from Garrett, who as offensive coordinator is the play-caller.

Jones still believes the Cowboys can bounce back and have a good season, starting with the Bears on Sunday in the home opener.

He also remains confident in the head coach-offensive coordinator relationship of Phillips and Garrett, despite their trouble in the waning moments of the first half.

NOTES AND QUOTES
A Cowboys win would prevent Dallas from opening the season 0-2. It would also give the Cowboys their third consecutive win over Chicago and make Dallas just the second NFL team since the merger to reach 400 wins (including playoffs), joining the Pittsburgh Steelers. ...

The Cowboys' walkthrough practice and team photo at Cowboys Stadium on Saturday will be open to the public as part of the team's "Rally Days." It will require the purchase of a tour ticket, though parking is free. Guided tours are $27.50 for adults and $22.50 for kids, seniors and military. Self-guided tours are $17.40 and $14.50.

Tours run from 8 a.m. to 6 p.m., with Walt Garrison making an alumni appearance at 11 a.m., Raghib "Rocket" Ismail at noon and Ed "Too Tall" Jones at 1 p.m.

The team will continue its "Rally Days" every Saturday before home games this season. ...

The Cowboys' defense has not allowed an opponent's offense to score a touchdown in three consecutive regular-season games, including the Washington game Sunday night. But the defense knows it has room to improve.

"We have to get the ball rolling," linebacker DeMarcus Ware said of the entire team. "It's sort of a bittersweet taste of, Hey, we played well in some areas. But the mistakes we made, I think it was 12 penalties that we had. That's going to kill you, whoever you play against, no matter how many points you scored. We have to eliminate the penalties in this game, and we've got to start early. You can't be trying to score touchdowns late or make big plays on defense late. We have to start in the first quarter and throughout the game."

QUOTE TO NOTE
"We played one game, and that's what's happened so far. I think we'll be fine. I don't think we're struggling. I think we moved the ball tremendously well. We had some long drives. We had five drives of seven plays or more. Now, sometimes field position hurts you. Any time you're having long drives and consistent drives, you're going to be all right." – Coach Wade Phillips on the team's struggles on offense, which is a continuation from last season.


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