Could this be a favorable omen regarding organizational direction? Fans can only hope, but there is great gain to be had while waiting to name the 7th head coach in franchise history. Not that it entered the reasoning or rationale process, but Jerry has cleared the path to adequately allow Michael Irvin to have his crowning moment in the Florida sun.
If there is any justice and sensibility in this non-conforming world, the Hall of Fame voting committee will see fit to induct The Playmaker into pro football's Hall of Fame. Putting the off the field highlight reel and police blotter aside, this gridiron warrior is most deserving of Canton bust hood. Without a doubt, this is Michael Irvin's best opportunity for election. There are no quarterbacks or marquee running backs on the ballot. That said, Michael Irvin should be a recipient of the tan camel hair jacket. To have it happen in the state where he made life and football come alive, would be a fitting end to his turbulent road to greatness. Coral Gables, the home of The Playmaker moniker, is just a stones throw away, and South Beach would be the preferred venue to honor Michael Irvin. By design or not, Jerry would love the Saturday headlines to be about his flamboyant receiver. Let's pray the voters get it right.
Following Sunday's big show down pitting the Monsters of the Midway against the Brickyard Boys, the voting body becomes a party of one. The business at hand will evolve to finding the Cowboys a head coach. Jerry Jones will punch that ticket within a week. By waiting to be the League's last franchise to declare a head coach, Jerry has afforded himself the opportunity to bring three additional candidates into the consideration mix, and all three deserve the chance to interview for the open seat. Jerry, the organization and the fans would be justly served by discussions with Bears D Coordinator Ron "Chico" Rivera, Colts D Coordinator Ron Meeks and Indy quarterback coach Jim Caldwell. Why not talk to contributing architects from both Super Bowl squads squaring off for Super Bowl XLI? There is absolutely nothing to lose and everything to be gained.
Jerry also affords himself the benefit of the gathered masses in Miami. With things hanging in the balance and a ton of coaching talent to consider, why not pick the minds of all those who have worked closely with all the candidates? It's the perfect venue to conduct in person background checks and reference checking. You know Jerry will make it a point to probe many. It's called due diligence. Instead of rushing out and rendering Norv Turner the chosen one, Jerry now uses that possibility as a safety net. Knowing you can't do worse than Norv Turner, Jason Garrett and a potentially-experienced defensive coordinator, what's not to like? There was no Jeff Fisher. There was no Bill Cowher. The entire slate of new hires is nothing shy of question mark city. There are no guarantees and sure things in this year's crop. All the more reason to be thorough in the search.
The Turner/Garrett/experienced defensive coordinator combo is viable and could turn out to be a formidable team. But there are several other combinations which could benefit Jones and the Cowboys organization immensely. Ponder the combination of Ron Rivera as head coach, Mike Singletary the defensive coordinator and Jason Garrett running the offense. You talk about a bright, vibrant youth movement. What better way to invigorate a down-trodden (thanks Tuna) Jones than aligning with a bunch of innovative kids. What's not to like? While both are professionals and utter gentlemen, both former Bears know a thing or two about playing butt-kicking, aggressive defense. They did it, one to a Hall of Fame career, under a no nonsense, take no prisoners coach. Jerry has the ultimate opportunity to link history with the sporting world's largest stage. The legacy Mike Ditka chiseled with the Cowboys is foundational, and the opportunity to hire two of his pupils and disciples is very appealing. 3-4, 4-3, who cares? Take the conservative wraps off and get after some opposing quarterbacks. Would there be any doubt the Cowboy defense would be respected up and down the League?! It's about time the jokes and snickering dispensed. These two would command respect and grace the stage.
In today's politically-sensitive world, the only way to address diversity is head on. Stop beating around the darn bush and tell it like it is. Jerry, would there be any benefit to hiring a Hispanic and African American into two of your three top coaching slots? Darn straight there is. What professional football team has a larger Hispanic and Latino following than the Dallas Cowboys? Thought so. Los vaqueros es muy bueno, si? Chico Rivera would be an inspiration and role model to many. Do you think Ron Rivera could have both economic and community presence in the state of Texas? Would San Antonio welcome Ron Rivera and the Cowboys to training camp with open arms and public outpouring? Could Jerry profit from doing the right thing? Jerry, do you truly want to remain America's Team? This time not so much for national exposure, but for national flavor and cultural awareness. Think about it. A Hispanic, African American and Caucasian leading the most recognized franchise in sports. Again, what's not to love about social advancement and respect for fellow man?
Mike Singletary has Texas ties. The former Baylor Bear has a bust in Canton, and by NFL film's standards alone, if he didn't make it, his eyes would have made it on the first ballot. Would Singletary's arrival bring a little notoriety to the Waco campus? What would Samari Mike's presence due for recruiting at Baylor? Just the booster shot needed to ascend to the desired Big 12 recognition level. How closely would DeMarcus Ware, Rob Carpenter, Chris Canty, Marcus Spears, Bradie James, Jason Hatcher, Terence Newman, Roy Williams and Patrick Watkins follow Mike Singletary into battle? Do you think he might be able to teach a thing or three about team play and togetherness? Was there a closer knit group than the '85 Bears? Personality and togetherness have never been more evident, and no team since that winning combination has exhibited the same bond that Mike Ditka forged.
Just speculating here, but there's probably a more than favorable chance the Rivera/Singletary combination could keep No. 81 completely ignored and in his rightful place. Publicly, you would never hear the tactics, but Owens would become a piece of the puzzle or the next ticket out of town. What's not to like about that?
Finally, the hire that had all the fandom screaming "Jerry's back at it again," is also an item of intrigue. Yes, Norv Turner makes sense, but Jason Garrett will be just fine on his own. He has the tools, the ties and the tenacity to go it alone. Alone meaning no big brother Norv. Before venturing too far, the Cowboys' offense is not the glaring issue. Go look at the year end stats. Yes, offensive line screams "throw us a rope," but Jeff Ireland and crew can remedy that ailment. Turn Jason Garrett loose. Let him recommend his supporting cast, and let Rivera and Jones sign off. No one has used the word sponge to define Garrett, but it fits. Start with his playing career and bring it to present date. You don't think he's had enough exposures to offensive teachers? Please. Five dollars says he starts with Hudson Houck, with an elevated title and paycheck, and let it roll from there.
It would be awesome to see this Ivy League educated lad take charge and fill in the blanks. Most doubt, but his list is already made. Three deep, guaranteed. He lives for this. The word "prepared" was never more designed for an individual. The Boy Scouts pale in comparison. Tony Romo, get down on your knees and say thanks. This thing is tailor-made for you. Botched hold nothing. David Lee will be missed, but only momentarily. The Red Ball Express is ready to roll.
So, Jerry will let the festivities play out in Miami, and then he'll get back to the business of putting the Cowboys on the front page. Hopefully the wait will pay dividends, and the Cowboys will find their head coach for many years to come. Youth, coupled with exuberance, can be infectious. At this juncture, the Cowboys organization could use a little injection of success.
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