The more they lose, the more that Jerry Jones digs in his heels.
The angrier that fans of his Dallas Cowboys get, the more defiant Jerry seems to become.
And even when the hosts of Jerry’s weekly radio show on 105.3 The Fan dropped the A-bomb — A, as in apathy and attendance — on him Tuesday, Owner Jones refused to give in.
“Not with games like the other day,” Jones objected. “That’s a show, if you want to look at it that way.”
Most Cowboys fans, however, would rather not. Most saw the 37-36 loss to Green Bay for what it was — the darkest regular-season defeat of the Jones ownership era.
Fans want answers. They want somebody’s head on a stick, mostly Jerry’s.
Back Jones into a corner, though, and he always responds the same. He knows, he always says. He knew the risks of signing this guy or firing that one, as if that’s supposed to absolve him of self-guilt.
If you’re jumping off the Cowboys bandwagon, Jones had a ready reply for Tuesday’s radio audience — hang on. And in the meantime, don’t blame him.
“We spent more money on this ball team than anybody in the NFL did this year,” Jones said. “We have the leading, No. 1 spend on a football team right here. We let it all hang out.
“We’ve got players that, if you stack them up and talk to people around the league, are quality players who can win. Our coaches, Jason [Garrett], over the last six or seven years, he’s had experience that you can’t replicate.
“All of these things can kick in and make us a winning combination. I’ve been here before.”
I have no reason to doubt that Jerry really believes that. After all, he’s been looking in the mirror and saying it for 17 years.
Why isn’t he getting the message that he’s the one constant behind those 17 mostly mediocre years?
Because he doesn’t have to. Arlington voters helped to build him a new stadium. Customers pay their way into the stadium to watch Jerry’s team. And sponsors line up to link their names with the Cowboys’.
As long as that combination exists, Jones’ worst employee — General Manager Jones — isn’t going anywhere.
Here’s the depressing answer that he gave to the 105.3 The Fan crew Tuesday morning: “It’s often said, why don’t I get someone to be the GM, to pick the players? Well, who in the world do you think that person [is talking to], when they walk through the door and say, ‘We want to get this player and pay this player?’
“I’m going to sit down and say, ‘Show me the player. Show me everything about the player before I write the check.’
“But rather than have that happen, I get involved and know everything there is to know about that player before they ever get to the door. That’s a better way to do it.”
The rest of the league knows better, of course. They know Jerry wouldn’t know an impact player from a pizza pitchman.
In 1994, Jones’ first draft after Jimmy Johnson left, the Cowboys selected Shante Carver in the first round. High picks in succeeding years included Sherman Williams, Kavika Pittman, David LaFleur, Ebenezer Ekuban, Dwayne Goodrich and Quincy Carter.
Yet, Jones still thinks things this season “can kick in and make us a winning combination.”
[Insert screams here]
As long as Cowboys fans keep handing Jerry their money, there is no reason to think that he will hire a real GM. As long as fans keep buying Cowboys sponsors’ products, Jerry won’t budge.
You can blame Jason Garrett, if you want. You can blame the defense or Monte Kiffin or Tony Romo or Dez Bryant leaving early.
But save some of the blame for the suckers who keep buying tickets and who blindly patronize the Cowboys’ sponsors.
Drop an Apathy-bomb on Jerry. It might be the only thing he understands.