Metamorphosis Underway

Slowly but surely, the wholesale changes promised by coach Bill Parcells are coming to fruition. <BR>

Offensive coordinator/running backs coach Maurice Carthon, who was Parcells' first new hire on the Cowboys' coaching staff back in 2002, is the latest to depart.

Carthon is headed to Cleveland, where he will serve as offensive coordinator under new coach Romeo Crennel.

Though Carthon has one year left on his contract, owner Jerry Jones and coach Bill Parcells have decided to release Carthon so he can run the Browns offense.

Carthon and Crennel have a close relationship dating back to the 1980s when Carthon was a player with the Giants and Crennel was a coach. They also worked together as coaches under Parcells with the Patriots and Jets.

Another caveat to the move is Carthon will have full play-calling responsibilities in Cleveland. Parcells calls the plays for the Cowboys.

Carthon also stands to earn a raise in Cleveland after earning significantly less than assistant head coach/quarterbacks coach Sean Payton in Dallas.

The move is viewed as an opportunity for Carthon to further his career and perhaps one day realize his hopes of becoming a head coach. Carthon's departure will mark the fourth coach to leave the Cowboys staff since the end of the regular season and the second in the last two weeks, following the firing of defensive ends coach Jim Jeffcoat. Offensive line coach George Warhop and kickers coach Steve Hoffman were let go shortly after the end of the season.

Jeffcoat's departure ends a 19-year association with the Cowboys. Jeffcoat played defensive end for the Cowboys from 1983-1994. He joined the staff as the defensive ends coach in 1998.

Jeffcoat's departure is just the latest signal that the franchise's glory years of the 1990's are gone. Jeffcoat, picked in the first round of the 1983 draft, was a member of the 1992 and 1993 Super Bowl title teams. He led the Cowboys in sacks three times and recorded double digit sacks four times, including 11.5 in 1984, 12 in 1985, 14 in 1989 and 10.5 in 1992. Jeffcoat played three years with the Buffalo Bills before retiring and coming back to the Cowboys as a coach.

The Cowboys have no longer have any coaches on staff who were part of any of the three Super Bowl title teams in the 1990's. Guard Larry Allen is the only remaining player to own a Super Bowl ring from that era. He was a member of the 1995 title team.

As far as additions are concerned, the Cowboys moved tight ends coach Tony Sporano to the offensive line. Paul Pasqualoni has been hired and will likely coach tight ends. Todd Bowles has joined the staff as a defensive backs coach.

Bowles, who spent the last four seasons as the Brown's secondary coach, becomes the club's first full-time secondary coach since Parcells took over as head coach in 2002. For the last two years, defensive coordinator Mike Zimmer has overseen the secondary, with Mike MacIntyre serving as the assistant defensive backs coach. Cowboys owner Jerry Jones said the addition of Bowles, who served as the Jets' secondary coach under Parcells in 2000, will free up Zimmer to monitor the entire defense.

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