What Did Jerry Mean?

IRVING, Tex. - Did Jerry Jones on Monday say he was thinking of making a move in this NFL Draft that featured "bundling''? Or did he say "bungling''?

Aw, I'm just kidding. The Cowboys owner still gets a great deal of credit in this space for his unprecedented accessibility, put on display this week as he conducted a pre-Draft press conference during which he prattled endlessly while saying. …


The mainstream media has latched on to Jones' assertion that the organization is more prepared than ever to make a trade up from No. 22 for an impact star.

Jones' exact quote: "I'm looking at the possibility of, and probably more seriously considering it than I ever have, doing some bundling up and trading up.''

Translating Jerry here is like assembling a word puzzle, like that game on the newspaper comic pages, what, "Jumble''?

Moving around some words, filling in some blanks, what Jerry kind of said: "Probably more seriously than I ever have, I'm looking at the possibility of doing some bundling up and trading up.''

There. Fixed. It's still a bunch of baloney – baloney "bundled'' together – but at least the sentence now represents something resembling English.

The only thing being "bundled'' at Valley Ranch is pre-Draft hyperbole, Jones saying something to say something – and, if it throws opponents off the scent, all the better. First there is that word "bundled.'' It reeks of something Jerry overheard being barked in a war room somewhere, and it sounds really "inside,'' so he throws it out there. Kind of like when you're on a date at a Mexican restaurant and you roll your ‘r's. Girls love that.

Or maybe Jerry didn't hear "bundle'' in a war room. Maybe he'd just gotten off the phone with a Verizon telemarketer and was considering reducing the cable/internet/phone bill at his Highland Park mansion.

Want football proof that Jerry is taking through his ‘D' coach's cap? When he says THIS year's "consideration of moving up'' is greater than previous years. … well, he's bundling baloney again.

The Cowboys moved up for tight end David LaFleur in 1997. They moved up for defensive end Shante Carver in 1997.

(Maybe Jerry meant to say that this year, they're considering moving up for guys who can actually play.)

But before that, Jerry and staff worked like crazy to find trade-up answers. In 1990, didn't the Cowboys trade up for Emmitt Smith? (But even though the real target was linebacker James Francis.) In 1992, didn't they settle on Kevin Smith only after thinking they had a deal to move up to No. 5 to take Terrell Buckley? (And isn't it funny how some of the best deals are the ones you don't make?)

Oh, and then there was 1991. That spring, virtually every single person in the organization pitched in in their way to do the research and lay the groundwork for the trade up to the No. 1 overall spot to pursue Rocket Ismail. When the Notre Dame receiver spurned them to go to Canada, all that same effort was put into the research and drafting of Miami defensive lineman Russell Maryland.

You're telling me the Cowboys are working harder than ever at maybe doing something that they've repeatedly done successfully before? How can you "consider something more seriously'' when on at least four occasions in the past you've not only "considered'' something, but actually DONE that something?

One more Jones revelation from Monday: He claims the Cowboys have on the table two specific offers to trade out of the first round in order to snag a No. 1 in next year's Draft. Really? Days before the Draft, well before teams know which player might land where, and they're already making firm offers?

"I'm talking out of both sides of my mouth a little but here,'' Jones conceded, meaning to reference only the "trade-up/trade-down'' plan but in fact issuing a statement that could define the whole dang process. Move Up. Move Down. Stay Put. All done like never before! That's just more flip-flopping and flim-flamming and Jerry Jones Jibber-Jabber. But at least the flips and the flams and the jibs and the jabs are all "bundled'' together.

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