Originally posted on Fox Sports Southwest  |  Last updated 12/20/12
Dallas-cowboys-head-coach
IRVING, Texas Under different circumstances, this could've been an incredibly awkward week for Dallas Cowboys head coach Jason Garrett. Had the Cowboys not turned their season around by winning five out of six games, including three straight in December, this week would've been all about exiled Saints head coach Sean Payton. The former Cowboys offensive coordinator still doesn't have a valid contract with the New Orleans Saints, and it looks like he'll be able to keep his options open into the offseason. And from all indications, the idea of working with close friend Jerry Jones is quite appealing to Sean Payton. But at least in my mind, Garrett can put all that talk to rest with a win over the Saints at Cowboys Stadium on Sunday. He will have rallied his team from a 3-5 start to the cusp of a playoff appearance. Payton is certainly far more accomplished and dynamic than Garrett, but that doesn't mean he'll be working for the Cowboys next season. Jerry's not above making cutthroat business decisions, but firing Garrett after how he's performed under immense pressure would be downright cruel. There's also the fact that Jones has always believed that coaches are overpaid. The thought of him paying Payton somewhere in the neighborhood of 7-8 million per year would be tough for him to stomach. The only reason he would've made such a splashy move is if fans had stopped showing up at Cowboys Stadium. According to my eye test, only about 60,000 showed up for the home game against the Cleveland Browns. But an enormous crowd showed up for the Steelers game maybe one-third of them waving Terrible Towels and there will likely be a record crowd to watch this Sunday's game. I've heard folks mention that hiring Payton would be a once-in-a-lifetime opportunity. But I guess the same could've been said about Bill Parcells. And though Parcells certainly restored some credibility to the organization and helped get a stadium in Arlington approved, he wasn't able to win a single playoff game. Payton has been enormously successful in New Orleans, but he wouldn't enjoy the same type of control in the Cowboys organization. Jerry tried to stay out of Parcells' way right up until the point he decided to sign Terrell Owens. That was the beginning of the end for those two. Payton should also think long and hard about what he'd be leaving behind in New Orleans. If his good pal Mickey Loomis wanted to join him in Dallas, he'd have to drop that "G.M." title immediately. The NFL reportedly wouldn't approve Payton's most recent contract with the Saints because of wording that basically gave the head coach the right to opt-out if the G.M. was fired. The league thought this might set a dangerous precedent. But what Roger Goodell did is turn Payton into the most coveted free-agent coach of the past decade. Of course, he also helped turn Payton into somewhat of a martyr by suspending him from the league without pay for an entire season over his role in Bountygate. Now, Payton will look to land a new contract that will account for not being paid in 2012. And don't forget that he's in the middle of what will surely be an expensive divorce. But if the Cowboys can beat Payton's Saints on Sunday, it's highly unlikely he'll be replacing Garrett. Jerry's son Stephen has made it clear in recent weeks that Garrett's coming back next season, but Jerry will be the ultimate decision-maker. He's watched Garrett turn this season around while guiding the Cowboys through a tragedy. And even before this impressive stretch, Garrett didn't seem to let the speculation regarding Payton's future bother him. "I don't think so much about that kind of stuff," Garrett said Wednesday. "What I try to do is the same thing I try to emphasize to our players focus on this day, the task at hand and do your job the best you can do it." Over the past month, Garrett has changed the way a lot of folks perceive him. And that will likely allow him to ward off Payton this time around. It looks like Sean will have to find another team to help him string the Saints along.
GET THE YARDBARKER APP:
Ios_download En_app_rgb_wo_45
MORE FROM YARDBARKER

Brady would be 'very jealous' if Manning wins Super Bowl

John Elway takes swipe at John Fox

Jets DT: I won't watch a Super Bowl 'until I play in one'

Hall of Fame coach: Stephen Curry is the best of all time

Reggie Bush on NFL future: ‘I’m not retiring’

Derek Fisher blasts Rondo over triangle offense criticism

LIKE WHAT YOU SEE?
GET THE DAILY NEWSLETTER:

Report: Marshawn Lynch hasn't spent any playing money

Ex-King says he could do 'much better job' than George Karl

Trainer thought Thomas Davis would not play in Super Bowl

Todd Gurley named NFL Offensive Rookie of the Year

Durant, Westbrook on loss to Warriors: We're not scared

Report: Eagles interested in bringing back Nick Foles

WATCH: Tom Brady booed during Super Bowl 50 MVP ceremony

Cam Newton's cleats have 'MVP' and stats written on them

Concession prices incredibly high at Super Bowl 50

Fan at Super Bowl 50 wears awesome dual-team jersey

Skip Bayless whiffed badly on Cam Newton prediction

Stephen Curry to serve as guest drummer for Panthers

Charlie Sheen tweets advice for Johnny Manziel

Cardale Jones predicts he will play in Super Bowl

QUIZ: Name the winning starting quarterback from every Super Bowl

Marcin Gortat fires back at critic on Twitter

WATCH: Kerr told Warriors he was happy to have close game

Broncos could have tough decision with franchise tag

WATCH: Steph Curry does 'Dab' on court on eve of Super Bowl

NFL News
Delivered to your inbox
You'll also receive Yardbarker's daily Top 10, featuring the best sports stories from around the web. Customize your newsletter to get articles on your favorite sports and teams. And the best part? It's free!

By clicking "Sign Me Up", you have read and agreed to the Fox Sports Digital Privacy Policy and Terms of Use. You can opt out at any time. For more information, please see our Privacy Policy.
the YARDBARKER app
Get it now!
Ios_download En_app_rgb_wo_45

Curry to serve as drummer for Panthers

Report: Marshawn Lynch plans to retire

The 14 biggest plays in Super Bowl history

Five outrageous predictions for Super Bowl 50

QUIZ: Name the winning starting quarterback from every Super Bowl

The top six matchups that could decide Super Bowl 50

Seven unheralded players set to make major impacts in SB 50

10 underrated performances in the NBA Slam Dunk Contest

X-factors in Super Bowl 50

NHL nightmare: No Canadian teams in playoff hunt

Today's Best Stuff
For Publishers
Company Info
Help
Follow Yardbarker