Job at Stake: Eagles vs. Cowboys Is Proving Time for Wade Phillips

Ryan CookFeatured ColumnistJanuary 9, 2010

LANDOVER, MD - DECEMBER 21: Head coach Wade Phillips of the Dallas Cowboys walks on the sidelines during the game against the Washington Redskins at FedExField on December 27, 2009 in Landover, Maryland. (Photo by Larry French/Getty Images)
Larry French/Getty Images

On the eve of one of the biggest playoff matches of the year between the Dallas Cowboys and the Philadelphia Eagles, many are thinking about the situation for Tony Romo, Donovan McNabb and which team can come out with the win.

Although all of those factors matter, there is also the situation of Wade Phillips' head coaching job.  Two months ago the Cowboys were beginning to look at the situation in Dallas, and consider firing Wade Phillips if the Cowboys season turned out to be a pitiful one.

Just as Jim Mora has been fired from the Seattle Seahawks, personally I believed, a long with a number of other people that we would be seeing a new face in a Motorola headset come next September.

Boy were we wrong.

Now that the Cowboys are looking like the team to beat in the NFC, Wade Phillips is looking like more of a hero rather than a fool. 

After losing to the Green Bay Packers in Week 10, and then going on to lose to the San Diego Chargers, the Cowboys were struggling.  Their offense was astray, their defense was out of sync, and Nick Folk wasn't helping the kicking game at all.

Wade Phillips being the man that he is, made the changes though.  Quarterback Tony Romo became more focused, Miles Austin developed into a quicker and more reliable receiver, the Cowboys run game got going with Marion Barber and Felix Jones, and more importantly, Dallas made the playoffs.

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However, we've seen this before right?  The Cowboys have made the playoffs, choked and been forgotten about over the remainder of the season.

Tonight though, it all comes down to who the better team is.  Donovan McNabb and the Eagles aren't going to be a cakewalk for Dallas.  With a high powered offense that is capable of scoring points at any time in the game, the Cowboys defense will have their hands full.

Wade Phillips' season has been what is newly called "A stock market season".  It's had it's ups and downs.  An up would of course be their win against the New Orleans Saints.  A down would be their close but narrow loss to the San Diego Chargers.

At Cowboys Stadium tonight though, Wade Phillips needs an up.  With the way coaches are being fired at the moment, Phillips can't afford to have his team under peform.

If the Eagles blow out the Cowboys in statement fashion, and Tony Romo goes back to his old ways of missing targets, getting sacked and heading to the sidelines with a glum look on his face.  Well, that glum look may just be on Wade Phillips' face come next week.

A win however, would secure Wade Phillips' coaching position.  With a 14 year playoff drought, all he needs to do is win.  Even if Dallas gets knocked out of the playoffs next week, a win would be very important for Dallas and their fans.

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