Posted January 09, 2013

Jerry Jones picks Rob Ryan as Cowboys’ scapegoat

Dallas Cowboys
Rob Ryan was hired as Cowboys defensive coordinator in 2011. (Brandon Wade/AP)

Rob Ryan was hired as Cowboys defensive coordinator in 2011. (Brandon Wade/AP)

Jerry Jones was desperate to find someone to blame (other than himself, of course) for the Dallas Cowboys’ latest disappointing season, and it looks like he got his man in defensive coordinator Rob Ryan.

A frustrated Jones said during a radio interview last week that “change is necessary at 8-8. We’re going to have some changes. … There are a lot of teams that haven’t been at .500, but nobody hasn’t been at .500 and spent as much cash as I’m spending.”

The obvious candidate to receive a pink slip during Jones’ reorganization period was, in most people’s eyes, head coach Jason Garrett. The Cowboys have finished 8-8 in both of Garrett’s two full seasons as head coach (he finished the 2010 year 5-3 after taking over for Wade Phillips), plus lost Week 17 winner-take-all games for the division each of those years.

How much of that was Ryan’s fault? In Jones’ opinion, enough of it to go another way on the defensive side of the ball. The statistics seem to back him up — Dallas finished this year ranked 19th in yards allowed and 24th in points.

Injuries certainly played a big role in Dallas’ failures on that side of the ball, though. And there are plenty of Cowboys fans out there who would pin more of the blame, rightfully so, on an underachieving offense.

That is Garrett’s domain. The Cowboys’ head coach calls the plays for the Dallas attack. Despite having Tony Romo, DeMarco Murray, Jason Witten, Dez Bryant, Miles Austin and others, the Cowboys finished just 15th in points scored this year, and the offense flopped for three quarters in that Week 17 loss.

Jones still could switch things up on offense, too, by giving current offensive coordinator Bill Callahan more responsibility … or by canning Callahan and adding a new O.C.

The Cowboys’ play calling appears to be the only job duty Garrett is in danger of losing at this time, even with Jones promising swift and sweeping adjustments. But the Ryan scapegoating may go down as a mistake, and it’s already one that drew the ire of a couple Cowboys defenders.

The window may be closing on Garrett’s time in Dallas — Ryan and running backs coach Skip Peete have been let go already, and more of Garrett’s staff could be on the unemployment line soon, so eventually, Dallas’ inability to get to the postseason has to fall on the head coach.

Garrett apparently will get a third shot, however, to turn the Cowboys around, with Jones looking over his shoulder.

“I’m going to spend a lot of time visiting with people outside of the organization. … That will help us evaluate how to do the things that I know what our fans want to do, and that’s not be sitting here at .500,” Jones said. “There are a lot of teams that haven’t been at .500, but nobody hasn’t been at .500 and spent as much cash as I’m spending.”

On Romo, Jones said, “Tony is a tremendous asset, and he’s an asset that is going to be with the Dallas Cowboys for, as far as I am concerned, a long time.”

27 comments
UndaDaradah
UndaDaradah

Jones is a Boffo. Until he "let's go" of the reins, and allows his management and coaching team to run the ball per se, he and the CBs will continue to lose. 

MichaelNeely
MichaelNeely

AS LONG AS JONES KEEPS ROMO THE COWBOYS WILL NEVER WIN ANOTHER SUPER BOWL OR PLAYOFF GAME . ROMO  MIGHT  HAD BEEN OKAY ONE TIME BEFORE, BUT HE HAS NOT WON A SUPER BOWL. WILL NOT WATCH THE COWBOYS UNTIL THEY GET RID OF TONY ROMO.

JayP
JayP

Okay, so Romo loses another big game and I suppose it's all his fault?  It's not like the 'Boys have had great teams during his time there.  They had a great 2007 season, and had Crayton not dropped a sure TD in the NFC Championship Game they would have gone to the SB.  But again, it's Romo's fault.  No, Romo is not a top tier QB, but do you get rid of him?  If you get rid of him, who do you replace him with?  He passed for over 4,900 yards this year!  Yes, he threw some untimely interceptions, but my goodness, he had a terrible O-line and he was constantly running for his life.  I'm good with the Kiffin hiring.  If Dallas improves their O-line and D-line, they have the skill players to go deep in the playoffs.  It takes a team to win, not just one player.   You could have given Dallas Brady, Manning (either one), Rodgers or whomever, and they still would not have been any better.  This was an average team. 

Perry E
Perry E

This is so typical of Jerry Jones. He is giving his head coach one more season with "Jerry watching over his shoulder". The Dallas Cowboys were a premier team for so long, but now they are infamous for their dysfunction instead of famous for their football. Jerry could never admit he made a mistake in picking Romo and is going to stick with this guy, regardless of the FACT that he is a CHOKE ARTIST in important games! He gave away the Washington game with his interception in the 4th, LIKE ALWAYS! I told my buddies as soon as he threw the first pick he was going to "get the hat trick" because that is what Tony does in important games! ALWAYS! So, Jerry, Garret, and Tony can ride this submarine with screen doors all the way to the bottom if they want. Not being a big cowboy fan, it does not matter to me. With the passing of Al Davis, and Dan Snyder backing off and letting PROFESSIONALS run his team, Jerry is the lone "Idiotic Owner" who thinks he can "help" his team through his extensive "knowledge and experience". Too Bad we cannot bring back Landry, or Jimmy and Emmet, Troy, Michael, Roger, Dorsett, etc... The Cowboys will be a soap opera until Jerry backs up and does what an owner should do; Sign the checks and SHUT UP!

Daily_Dose_of_Irony
Daily_Dose_of_Irony

Bill Walsh once said of quarterback Steve DeBerg: "He's just good enough to get you beat." That is not quite the case with Romo. But he is just the quarterback to lose when winning matters most. (He's like Jay Cutler was in Denver, high stakes caused nerve damage, and like clockwork he was high or low with a pass once or twice too often.) For Dallas to win the Super Bowl (wow, I never thought I was in to fantasy sports...) Dallas must coast into the post-season, then have a big lead going into the fourth quarter of every play-off game. The remoteness of this scenario is pleasant, as I (and so many others) dislike the Cowboys as a hobby.   

donniejohnson4
donniejohnson4

Rob Ryan didn't exactly have a good year.  The Cowboys defense finished 24th in scoring in 2012, allowing 25 points per game.  They came in 29th in pass defense, giving up a 94.7 quarterback rating, and they struggled to stop the run, allowing 4.5 yards per carry to opposing backs.  That number was good enough for 24th in the league. I just read a great article on SI.com about "passer rating differential" or PRD being a good predictor of winning teams.  How are the Cowboys supposed to win games if they're giving up a 94.7 quarterback rating every week? Basically, I have no problem with the Cowboys firing Rob Ryan.  He's not nearly as good as he thinks he is.  

wiseguy
wiseguy

P.S. Jerry, the Seahawks litterally stripped there team down to nothing , an expansion team. They have won 2 playoff games in 3 years. Tim Tebow QB'd the Broncos to a victory over the Steelers. They went and got a top notch football guy, John Fox. Here is a common denominator, The owners stay the hell out of the way.

wiseguy
wiseguy

It's Al Davis all over again. Hey Jerry here is a thought. HIRE PEOPLE WHO KNOW FOOT BALL, who in turn hire people who know football. You may as well be 0 - 16.

mobetta
mobetta

Hey JERRY!!!!!  Hire Rex Ryan and Tim Tebow to solve all your woes!!!!  Us Redskin fans would really respect you in the morning for that!   BWAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAAAAA!!!!!!

Wittenrocksmysocksoff
Wittenrocksmysocksoff

Anyone who says Romo is the problem is a moron and clearly knows nothing about football. If his offensive line knew how to block the way they are supposed to, he would have the support for his real abilities to shine. Look at quarterbacks like Brady. I've counted upwards of 5-8 seconds after the snap for him to make a call and throw. Romo doesn't even get half that. See for yourself. Count out the time after the snap to Romo and then go count them out for other QBs... you'll see. For what he's given, he does an amazing job and under that presser, not many others would accomplish even that much. That's why they keep him. They know his abilities and his potential given the right set up. I will admit he's choked a few times and messed up here and there. But the Cowboy's failure as a whole is most certainly not on him. He's just easy to blame because he's the QB. As for Rob Ryan.... that isn't who deserved to go home. Jason Garrett needed the pink slip. He makes terrible calls and wastes time outs like crazy. He clearly isn't the right choice for the Boys and he's going to continue to be their handicap.

garyt02
garyt02

Yep, Jerry keeps missing the problem. Romo has always choked up in the pressure games, and he always will.

 

Bobby6
Bobby6

hey jerry now ya got ya cowboy hat on firing rob ryan is going in the right direction now lets keep t. romo but tell him for every interception he throws this year comes out of his pocket .lets get rid of d. murray  and talk to f.jones and select a speedster runner for a reasonable price .also lets have a talk with miles austin and see if he wants to play or sit on the side lines give him an alter matum. on the defense we need a veteran pass rusher to support d.ware and please get rid of #21 and all the rest of the arm tacklers that are afraid to tackle hell cowboys tackle when the cant rope. please dont get another spineless defensive coordinator we need back bone and gnuts.

waterheatersonly
waterheatersonly

The real problem is Romo. He is the biggest Choke artist in football

RobertFegley
RobertFegley

Yeah scapegoating Ryan is a very typical and predictable Jones move. I think Ryan is overrated, but he's definitely NOT the Cowboys' biggest problem. But of course Jones can't really fix the real problems (Garrett, Romo, and terrible personnel decisions -esp. the OL). Doing that would require a tacit admission that he was totally wrong about those things, which will never happen in Jones' own mind, let alone publicly.

M as in Mancy
M as in Mancy

Bill Parcells had a theory about player acquisition in the NFL. It wasn't popular or flashy, but fit the realities of the sport. EVERY 2-3 years he would draft with a 1-3 rd pick on the O and D lines, and always look for men who rush the passer. Good players or not, he fed the grinder and consistently won in the trenches. JJ the GM screwed his D coaches by neglecting to draft DL talent for years.

 

The best decisionmakers make smart decisions before they become obvious ones. In this case the obvious AND smart decision would be to hire a real GM so JJ can continue to open lingerie stores and book stadium events.

TexasX
TexasX

Rob Ryan did a good job with what transpired in the 2012 season. On the other hand, Garrett did a very poor job. He continues to underachieve and to be out coached, game after game. The only thing that saves Garrett is Jerry Jones stubborness.  There is no other team in the NFL that will hire Garrett as a head coach.

Redfish1
Redfish1

Jones is a JOKE - always has been - always will be. The biggest problem is as long as he owns the team, no top tier coach will go near the Cowboys. He will always be looking for a "puppet" to run his horse and pony show not someone who can really turn them around.

syndromezed
syndromezed

Too bad for the 'Boys that Jones won't fire himself and just stick to cutting checks for the team.

ShaneTurner
ShaneTurner

 @JayP Crayton dropped two key passes in the Divisional Playoffs. The Cowboys would of had to get past Green Bay in order to go to the SB after that, which I doubt they could of handled. I like Tony Romo but he is making it harder and harder to appreciate him as our QB. The O-line didn't give him a lot of protection at the beginning of the year, but towards the end they were much better and gave Romo some time to actually sit in the pocket. This resulted in a winning streak, but all was for nothing when Tony Romo read one play wrong. Thats all it takes. Those one time decisions separate the top tier QBs from the ones below them.

usameos6
usameos6

 @wiseguy Actually, Al Davis was a very smart football man but the game passed him by and he could not adjust to it.  More of a has-been than anything.  As far as the pro game goes - Jerry Jones is an owner that wants to be seen as a football guy (since he played in college) but as a personnel evaluator - he's more of a never-was.

RossOrion
RossOrion

 @Bobby6 I was going to argue with you about how ludicrous the majority of what you said was....but instead i'll take the high road and remind you that punctuation, capitalization, spelling and grammar as a whole are your friends. That way when your hands make stupid things happen on the keyboard you can at least sound smart doing it. Alter Matum.....really?

ronf78155
ronf78155

 @waterheatersonly Although the are loaded with a ton of problems (and I love it).....the real problem is having a millionaire owner who wants to be coach, GM, trainer, water boy.......who doesnt have a clue of what he's doing.... 

MikeF.Scholes
MikeF.Scholes

 @Redfish1 could not agree more!  This could be the most dysfunctional team in professional sports....including Toronto Maple Leafs.  Garrett is about as inspiring as unsweetened oatmeal.  Getting rid of Ryan is just Skeletor being his typical "couldn't be me" self even though he is a legendary GM...in his own little Jerry playland.

I love the Cowboys....always will but their current hierarchy resembles "The Gang that Couldn't Shoot Straight" .

It's time Jerry....like it or not....YOU NEED A REAL GM......TODAY WOULD BE GOOD!

JayP
JayP

 @ShaneTurner  @JayP Keep in mind in 2007 the 'Boys had already beaten Green Bay at home; if the 'Boys had beaten New York, they would have had a rematch with Green Bay again at home.  I think they would have had an excellent chance of beating them again.  Now, would they have beat New England who had already beaten them by 21 at home ... doubtful, but who would have thought New York would have won?  My only point is that Romo has not had but one really good team since he's been there and he was let down by others.  He made the passes, Crayton simply dropped them.  I totally agree he's not a top tier QB, but he's certainly in the next level.  Incidentally, that last interception against Washington was due to the fact the O-line allowed someone in so he rushed the pass.  Should he have thrown it away?  Absolutely!  As you pointed out, it's those decisions that separate the great QBs from the very good QBs.   

RossOrion
RossOrion

 @ronf78155  @waterheatersonly ....and then points to the years they won the super bowl with one of the best coaches, and by extension, teams to have played in my lifetime and says "see!! my way works!" that's too bad he got rid of Jimmy cuz the Cowboys have been nothing since then

A1
A1

 @MikeF.Scholes  @Redfish1 Lets not get too crazy here ... I still think the Leafs are tops in regard to disfunctional ... although I think the NY Jets have earned their shot at the top spot too... Cowboys may get there, but they still have a way to go.