Dallas Cowboys

Did Jerry Jones really burn the ships in his state of the Dallas Cowboys address or did somebody slip him a mickey before he took the podium?

This week Postins postscript begs some questions surrounding that strangely uneventful state of the Dallas Cowboys training camp address 

By Matthew Postins

NFL Writer and Dallas Cowboys insider @Cowboycamp on twitter

It’s a special Jerry Jones/State of the Cowboys edition of postscript. Because sometimes it makes sense to just give Jerry the mic and let him rip.

But was that actually Jerry? He seemed rather subdued. Someone in the press corps tweeted that Jones even had notes. Of course, after last year’s “glory hole” comment, just about anything pales in comparison. Still, no grand proclamations, no grand gestures and no throwing down of the gauntlet. It was just weird.

Doesn’t it seem like once every major press conference Jerry seems to give Jason Garrett permission to speak? It worked that way on Saturday. Seemed like Cowboys PR director Rich Dalrymple almost had to prompt Jerry to let Garrett talk.

Just 17 players are left from the Jason Garrett started as head coach. Now that’s Jimmy Johnson football, people – wear that roster down until only the strong survive. And go 8-8. In consecutive years. Well, Ok. That second part isn’t Jimmy Johnson football. That’s Jerry Jones football.

It’s Jerry Jones’ 25th training camp as team owner. He recalled his first training camp in Thousand Oaks, Calif., in 1989. He said the grass smelled just like the grass in Arkansas when he was a Razorback in the 1960s. Come up with your own joke. That one’s too easy for me.

Another Jerry Jones 1989 training camp story: “We came up to practice the Raiders that first year and came up here (Oxnard) and this was the first time I had seen this place. (Late Raiders owner) Al (Davis) had it all blocked off with high fences and tarps.” In an unrelated matter, Saturday’s player fitness test was closed to the media and public. No tarps required. Who really wants to watch a bunch of guys run wind sprints?

What was the deal with the Wes Phillips answer? The question was perfectly legitimate. Phillips is in his first year as tight ends coach and in charge of a group that could be pivotal to this season, as the Cowboys are going all in on two-tight end formations and spent a second-round pick on Gavin Escobar. Instead of talking about Phillips, Jerry spent nearly two minutes talking about how nice it was to have a coach like Garrett, with his offensive experience, directing Phillips this season. “With all the confidence I have in Phillips, It’s great to know our head coach is there and watching every detail,” Jones said.

Um, yeah that’s nice, Jerry. But what about the ACTUAL tight ends coach? Perhaps consider ACTUALLY answering the question? There’s talking around the question, and there’s rejecting the premise of the question. Jerry excelled at rejection in this case.

Back to the nonsense about play calling. Garrett spent some time on it, assuring us all that he’s been involved in every aspect of the team since he became head coach and his turning over play-calling duties to Bill Callahan is just another step in his progression as a head coach, blah, blah, blah, blah, blah. First of all, true. Second of all, it would look a lot better if anyone believed Garrett was the one that made the decision.

I still don’t understand the whole “We want Tony Romo to be more involved” thing. Every time Jones or Garrett brings this up it just raises the perception that Romo wasn’t doing enough preparation the past six years. Garrett talked about how they want to keep the lines of communication open with Romo all the time, how they want him to let them know what’s working and what’s not working during workouts. If the Cowboys weren’t doing that to begin with, then that’s on them, not Romo. But Garrett says they were, and Romo’s production overall leads me to believe he was. So then what more do they want?

Well, they want Romo to stop throwing interceptions in key situations, for one. But that’s not communication, people. That’s decision-making. And extra involvement in-game planning may never solve that problem.

Jones when reflecting on last year: “We burned the ships.” So the Nina, the Pinta and the Santa Maria are lying at the bottom of White Rock Lake? Yes, it’s a metaphor, I know. But Jerry makes it so easy sometimes.

Jerry was referring to last season. They’ve left it behind. He also talked about the trials of self-employment.

“When you work for yourself the thing that has to change is the mirror,” Jones said. “You can’t change him out.”

But, oh how Cowboys fans would love to try.

It’s funny to think of Jerry Jones thinking of himself as self-employed. Is that what he puts on his income taxes? Profession: Self-employed? He runs a billion-dollar business. It’s just absurd. It’s also true. He runs his own business. He’s self-employed.

It’s absurd to think that a guy who pays more in income taxes in a month than I make in an entire year thinks of himself as self-employed.

Jones said that Garrett wasn’t coaching for his job in 2013. Why? Jones believes the relationship between Garrett and Romo, going on seven years, is going to lift this team out of mediocrity.

But let’s be honest. A Cowboys head coach under Jerry Jones has a shelf life of about four years. By midseason Garrett will be starting year four. You do the math.

I already have – 8-8 equals unemployment for Garrett. Heck, no playoff berth equals unemployment for Garrett.

But not Jones because, you know, he’s self-employed. So I guess that makes Garrett his mirror?