Originally posted on Fox Sports Southwest  |  Last updated 11/27/12
For those of you clamoring for Jason Garrett's dismissal, I have a bit of bad news to deliver. Unless Sean Payton offers to do pro bono work for Jerry Jones, Garrett will return in 2013 as the head coach of the Cowboys. Someone will be thrown overboard (Rob Ryan?), but Garrett would have to lose the next five games in order for Jerry to make a coaching change. And despite this team's stunning lack of firepower (unless trailing by three scores) and breakdowns on defense, I don't see the Cowboys losing six consecutive games. Not with Andy Reid's zombies headed to town with a 3-8 record. And when it's announced that Garrett is indeed returning, he should thank his lucky stars for all these injuries. For a delusional owner grasping for excuses, the loss of Sean Lee, DeMarco Murray and now Bruce Carter will be the rallying cry heading into the offseason. Other teams may be able to overcome numerous injuries to key players, but the Cowboys aren't built for that type of thing. Perhaps a healthy Lee and Murray would've had the Cowboys in better position after 11 games, but that's not something you can say with any certainty. Are we supposed to believe the presence of Lee would have kept Robert Griffin III from hanging 28 points on the Cowboys in the first half on Thanksgiving? If anything, the absence of Lee actually seemed to turn Carter into a better player. He took on more responsibility while playing at an elite level. Unfortunately, he'll now miss the rest of the season with an elbow injury. And the only man who will profit from that injury is, once again, Garrett. Jerry loathes the idea of starting over with a new head coach while having to continue paying Garrett. Just because he loves being pals with Payton doesn't mean he's started respecting the position of head coach. And the last thing you want to do is fire Garrett and then basically hire 64-year-old Mike Holmgren on an interim basis. Holmgren's had a long and distinguished NFL career, but I don't get the sense he's dying to be on the sideline again. And like Bill Parcells before him, Holmgren could end up walking away at any moment. So what Jerry will do is stick with Garrett while telling everyone who will listen how good the Cowboys could've been if only Murray, Lee, Carter, Costa, Austin, Churchcould've remained healthy. And he'll also convince himself and his army of sycophants how close the Cowboys came to beating teams such as the Ravens, Falcons and the Giants in their second matchup. This is where Jerry's background as an oilman undermines the whole process. He's able to look past the results of the past 16 seasons and believe that a gusher's right around the corner. He almost seems to be emboldened by failure, which is an admirable trait unless you own the most valuable franchise in American sports. And even Jerry's heir apparent, Stephen Jones, is starting to sound more like his father. Once believed to be the voice of reason, the younger Jones told reporters at Valley Ranch on Monday the Cowboys "have just as good a chance as anybody else" to make the playoffs. As long as Jerry and Son keep saying things like that, Garrett is in pretty good shape for 2013. I thought Jerry had been rattled by the spectacular performance of RG3 on Thanksgiving, but if the Cowboys can beat the downtrodden Eagles on Sunday, he'll return to his optimistic self. It has to kill Jerry that Garrett has been such a disappointment as head coach. This was a player who had been part of the organization during its glory years and was widely regarded as one of the brightest minds in coaching. But now we know the Ravens and Falcons were incredibly fortunate that Garrett turned them down. They hired emotional coaches who inspire players and fans alike. I'll never forget one high-ranking member of the Ravens telling me that Garrett was so impressive in the interview process that he could easily be elected President of the United States. Garrett was probably much better suited for politics since he rarely provides any answers of substance. But he'll survive this mess of a season because the Cowboys continue to lose talented players on a weekly basis. Maybe it would behoove Jerry to think back to how badly Garrett wanted Felix Jones in the first round of the 2008 draft. Garrett, then the team's offensive coordinator, thought Jones would be the perfect complement to Marion Barber. Now it appears Felix's career in Dallas is coming to a close. He reported to training camp out of shape and he provides little punch in the "running game." The team spent second-round picks on Sean Lee and Bruce Carter and a third-round pick on DeMarco Murray because they believed those players to have first-round talent. And while each of those players have shown that to be true, none of them will likely be on the field Sunday. That could be an extreme case of bad luck for the Cowboys, or it could be other teams wisely deciding not to base their futures on players with significant injury histories. Either way, all these injuries will keep Jason Garrett employed for at least another season. It's just one of the perks for working for such a benevolent man.
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