Another week has given us yet another example of the head coach at Valley Ranch seemingly having another layer of football skin sliced away by the ongoing maniacal frenzy of a team owner gone insane.
Then again, Mr. Jerry has not “gone” insane. When it comes to the Dallas Cowboys, he’s been insane for two decades.
Long ago, Mr. Jerry earned the right to be labeled a football idiot, and as the years roll by, that legacy is repeatedly confirmed.
But this particular Cowboys off-season, which has gone from winter into spring and now into summer, continues to be rather rough and rather crazy for one Jason Garrett.
Speaking of summer, have you ever sat on a stock tank dock and watched a fillet knife in expert hands slice through a fine mess of crappie?
In this case, Red J is NOT the one with the fillet knife. He’s ended up in the frying pan.
At times, such as this week, there’s a tendency from here to feel bad for Garrett, but, of course, this is not a man who deserves even a smidgen of sympathy.
He knew exactly what he was getting into.
When he took the job, Garrett knew Jerry better than any other head coach going all the way back to, and including, Jimmy Johnson.
Even in his days as offensive coordinator, Red J was and is highly compensated by Jerry.
And early on, Jason had a chance to escape, with firm head-coaching offers in hand from Baltimore and Atlanta, yet he stayed, waiting on the head-coaching job here to open up, which he knew would come in time.
In hindsight, and now looking at the Ravens and the Falcons compared to the Cowboys, Garrett’s career decisions were staggering blunders.
But Jason wanted to stay with Jerry. And that’s what he’s now got. All Jerry, all the time.
Since January, the perception — with some reality also attached — is a complete erosion of power for the head coach. Since Jerry has always demonstrated zero respect for the position of head coach, and since the Cowboys have been a mediocre team under Garrett, this erosion is only logical.
This week’s latest example of Garrett being again sliced and diced involved the offensive play-caller, a position Garrett had held here since 2007.
It was discovered, because Jerry wanted it discovered, that offensive line coach Bill Callahan will now call the plays.
Jerry dropped a strong hint on the media that this was the change. Callahan was caught off guard when the media approached him, but didn’t want to lie, and admitted he was the guy.
But once again, and as stated here three weeks ago, what I really do like about Garrett is he won’t play these Jerry media games.
Silly or not, Jason stood at a Valley Ranch podium and refused to confirm the change to the media. Jerry said it. Callahan nervously admitted it, but Garrett stonewalled it. Kind of funny, if you ask me.
Garrett wanted to do it his way, which probably meant an announcement next month at training camp in Oxnard, and when Jerry did it his way instead, Jason balked on him.
Repeatedly this off-season, Garrett has demonstrated a defiant side. It’s very subtle at times, but it’s there. There’s not been any of that “whatever Jerry says” submissive weakness from Jason.
For those in the media who label him a puppet, I disagree. Short of flat quitting on Jerry, Garrett hangs in there.
We don’t know if it was Jerry’s idea to give Callahan the new duty, or if it was Garrett’s move.
I will repeat again that I like the change. Garrett being a head coach in charge of the whole team, and a head coach who is concerned with the overall sideline management, is a positive step in the opinion of many of Garrett’s football friends.
In a normal situation, of course, the head coach would do this by choice. The Cowboys are far removed, obviously, from a normal situation.
If Jerry made the call, that would lead to a troubling assumption he got the OK from his new assistant owner, Tony Romo. Seemingly, Jerry is doing nothing these days without Romo’s approval.
The Jerry anvil hangs heavy over Garrett’s head. You would hope the Romo anvil hasn’t also been added, but with Jerry in charge, anything is possible.
We assume Garrett’s job is on the line this season. Playoffs or else.
The next assumption was Garrett’s stubborn side would surface and he’d want to continue calling plays.
But no matter who made the play-calling change, it didn’t happen on the head coach’s terms. The way it was announced — Jerry’s way — meant another slice of football skin was removed from the head coach.
Mr. Jones has added an additional pound of flesh to his off-season collection.