The status of Dallas Cowboys head coach Mike McCarthy doesn't hinge on the outcome of the team's NFC Wild Card Game against the Tampa Bay Buccaneers.
Team owner Jerry Jones said Tuesday on 105.3 The Fan's Shan & RJ he won't base his evaluation solely on a defeat if that's how things transpire.
"I don't need to go into all the pluses and minuses," Jones said of how he'll weigh the situation. "... I've got a lot more to evaluate Mike McCarthy on than this playoff game."
A comment like that can be read one of two ways.
The first is that Jones already has a level of faith in McCarthy that won't be shaken even if Dallas is eliminated in the opening round. Considering Jones stuck with Jason Garrett for nine-plus seasons, that could very well be the case. Two playoff trips in three years is certainly a better return than Garrett delivered.
Michael Gehlken @GehlkenNFL
Cowboys owner Jerry Jones on <a href="https://twitter.com/1053thefan?ref_src=twsrc%5Etfw">@1053thefan</a>: "I can't tell you how much confidence I've got in Mike (McCarthy) and our coaching staff being on top of where we are with this team right now. …I have complete confidence in this coaching staff. It's outstanding."
Jones could also be implying that he's seen enough to justify firing McCarthy, and a defeat Monday would merely be the final nail in the coffin.
For Cowboys fans, they're probably hoping it's the latter because yet another promising season looks like it will end in playoff heartbreak.
A 26-6 loss to the Washington Commanders in Week 18 was certainly foreboding. The Cowboys had 182 yards of total offense as Dak Prescott went 14-of-37 for 128 yards, one touchdown and one interception through the air.
If Dallas follows that by losing to an eight-win Buccaneers squad, then the year will be deemed a complete failure by many.
Considering how badly Jones wants to win another Super Bowl, you'd think McCarthy would be out of a job in that scenario. His comments Tuesday certainly lead you to believe otherwise.