Monday, February 5, 2007

Thoughts on the Cowboys Search

Any minute now, this particular blog will be out of date and some of the thoughts have already been put aside, but I'm gonna offer my thoughts anyway.

First of all, I was one who advocated Bill to leave in the first place. His thing had run out here and he was tired and ready to be put out to pasture. There is no question that the Bill Parcells era was a failure. Two playoff appearances and zero victories has to be considered a failure. The talent on this roster is unquestionably improved, but not as much as I expected. Did he hit on a offensive lineman in the draft? Ok, enough of that, let's look at the search itself.

Let me tell you what I don't want. I don't want a college coach (evidently I don't have to worry too much about that). The learning curve is just too great. Besides Jimmy Johnson, how many strictly college coaches have come in and done a great job? The list of those who struggled are much longer: Nick Saban, Steve Spurrier, and Butch Davis are just a few of the examples of successful college coaches who couldn't get it done in the pros. I might be interested in Charlie Weiss, because of his success with New England, but his success at Notre Dame has been middling so far. There's no gaurantee in my mind that he will get it done in the pros. Bob Stoops, Mack Brown, Tommy Tuberville, etc. doesn't interest me in the least. I'd even be leary of Pete Carrol. He was terrible in the pros before being pulled off the scrap heap at USC. Now he can pay, err, recruit the best players. (Maybe it would be a smooth transition for Carrol after all). Even so, I don't understand why they would want to leave. They have too much control, get paid too much money, and have more margin of error.

Another kind of coach I don't want is a retread. Here's where I'm getting nervous. Spares like Wade Phillips, Steve Marriuci, Denny Green, Dave Wannstedt, and yes, Norv Turner fall way down on my list. Phillips and Turner, who have gotten interviews so far, are great coordinators, but haven't pulled it off as head coaches yet. I honestly expect Turner to be named head coach by the end of the week. His relationship with Jerry Jones, Troy Aikman, the obvious connection the glory years make him the obvious candidate. He wasn't great in Washington (49-59, 1-1 in 6+ years), but you can't really hold the travesty at Oakland against him (9-23 in two years). He is only retread that I'd consider. I'm not real happy about it, but it could be worse. I think he has as good a chance as any of bringing out the best in Tony Romo, which should be the priority.

The coach I really want to a young coordinator who can bring a new positive energy to the Cowboys. The ideal candidate to me is Ron Rivera or Jim Caldwell. As underwelmed as I was with the Bears defense in the Super Bowl, they did have a dominate defense the last couple of years. Jim Caldwell is the Colts quarterbacks coach. I had never heard of Caldwell before Rick Gosselin mentioned him in the paper the other day, but that's the kind of head coach I want for the Cowboys. The scary part of this is that you might end up with Chan Gailey, but you might also get Bill Cowher. With Norv Turner, you kinda know what you're gonna get.

Jason Garrett is a wild card. I'm not sure what to do with him. He's a little inexperienced for head coach as he has no coordinator experience, but everyone seems to think he's close to being ready. If he's the head coach in waiting, perhaps a retread (Turner) is the best option. But I'll leave you with this question: If the Cowboys are successful, as we all hope they are, will they be able to move Turner out or will Garrett end up somewhere else?


Chris said...

With Bill gone, my old prediction is back in play: At some point, Jerry will name himself head coach. Don't think it will be now, but it will happen, especially if the Cowboys continue to underachieve. Jean-Jacques Taylor wrote about this a few days ago, but he is actually in favor of it.
As for now, I favor Rivera. Not interested in Caldwell--Peyton does it by himself. Ideally, give me Rivera as DC, Turner as HC. Let him do his thing a few years and mentor Garrett. Keep Bowles and Sparano in various roles. That gives you four guys with HC potential down the line. Even if a couple get picked by other teams, there should still be a few around to choose from for the next HC.
Unless that's when Jerry names himself.

rus said...

If Jerry names himself coach................. I don't know how I could live. I'm speachless even thinking about it.

PJ said...

I would have to say Turner is in the lead as well. Rivera has been mentioned a lot, but it really only seemed like a mention that they would interview him. A lot of talk has also been about either letting Garrett try to make a name for himself and if he fails, to go after Cowher next year. Or to go with Turner with an extremely short leash and if he fails (as I would expect), to go after Cowher next year.
Chris, I don't doubt that Jones might name himself head coach, and part of me wants to see it because we all love train wrecks.