We all know that Jerry Jones loves when the Cowboys are in the limelight, at the center of the national media's attention. If you've been following that media lately, then you know it's been a long time since the Cowboys have been relevant. Too long for his liking. In fact, the last time I remember the Cowboys being front and center in the headlines was when he finally decided to fire Wade Phillips.
I'm predicting Jerry makes a splash to put the Cowboys front and center once again. He's done it before. Deion Sanders. T.O. Bill Parcells. Just to name a few. I believe he's about to do it again, and he's going to make the biggest splash possible. He's going to hire Bill Cowher. Watch for it. He's already dropped hints about wanting to explore all coaching options, denying reports that Cowher was not on his list of candidates, and to me the one that really stands out is his pre-game chat with the NFL Network crew.
When asked about what he's seen from Jason Garrett, Jerry said, "I know how smart he is. I know how much he really can motivate. He's very articulate. We had it in mind when he was hired that someday he could be coach of the Cowboys there is no question about that. He has exceeded my expectations. And so all of that comes into play. There is no doubt in my mind that he has the organizational ability the football instincts. …There is no doubt he has the skills to be a head coach in the National Football League. The question is when? The facts are that he's had five games where he's been a head coach that includes junior high schools, high schools, all of them. We don't have time to have a bad time with the Dallas Cowboys. We need to hit the ground running next year; this has been too much of a disappointment this year. That's the thing I am going to be thinking about -- the experience factor."
Subsequently, he was asked about the possibility of bringing in Jon Gruden or Bill Cowher. Jerry had this to say, "I’m a big believer in a challenge and doing something that has never been done before. You know there’s never been a head coach that won a Super Bowl with one team that won it with another? Never."
I think Cowher would be the perfect fit. He's a 3-4 guy, a defensive specialist (which is where this team needs the most help), a Super Bowl winner (so he knows what it takes to get there), a player's disciplinarian (as I like to call it, a coach who is a hardass, but the players all love him), and he's arguably one of the greatest coaches in NFL history. Many would argue that Jason Garrett has done enough to deserve a shot. Don't mistake the way the Cowboys played for the first five weeks after Wade Phillips was fired as being mostly Garrett's doing. Jerry had a lot more to do with the team's turnaround. Anyone can make the players wear suits on away games and practice in pads, but firing Wade was a wake-up call. He threatened their jobs. That had as much to do with the turnaround as anything else. Don't buy into the hype because Garrett started 3-1. If the Cowboys lose Sunday, he will be 4-4 and will have lost 3 of his last 4. You can see from Saturday night's game against the Cardinals that the team is beginning to slip back to the way it played under Wade Phillips.
Make no mistake. Jerry is scared. This season has scared him. He knows he has to win and win big. He has to do something that will put bodies in the seats of his football palace. Not just for the legacy that is America's Team, but it's also about the money. The Cowboys have filed 17 lawsuits against their own fans who have reneged on paying for their luxury suites, attempting to recoup tens of millions of dollars according to the Star-Telegram. This is a serious state of affairs. It will be financially devastating for him if the Cowboys continue to lose with a billion dollar stadium to pay for. Jerry's a businessman first and foremost. He'll do what he has to do.
Does he want to step back a little and let a football person run things? Hell no. Will he admit that he's doing that? Hell no. He said himself on NFL Network, "I'll shop the groceries because I got to eat them too." That doesn't mean he's the only one making the decisions, as he went on to explain, "Bill (Parcells) and I shopped for groceries and had a good time doing it." He'll bring in Bill Cowher, and he'll let Cowher call the shots. He won't say that's the way it is. He'll say they're working together and making the decisions together. But behind closed doors, Cowher will be the man making all the football decisions.
This is the only way Jerry can save face. The only way to renew enthusiasm from the fans. The only way to get the national media to talk Cowboys as a point of consistent emphasis. And the only way to win big, and win now.
Watch for it.