Originally written on Pro Football Spot  |  Last updated 11/20/14
The Dallas Cowboys aren’t at a crossroads and they aren’t in peril. Flatly, they just aren’t any good.On Sunday night in New Orleans, the Cowboys defense was beat to sleep. They gave up a franchise record 625 yards, which by the way was a two week old record. The old record was set when they gave up 623 to the Lions.Despite DeMarcus Ware’s return, his presence wasn’t enough to stop Drew Brees and his carpet crew from running the Cowboys off the field.To continue the pile on, Brees had four touchdowns, former Heisman Trophy winner Mark Ingram rushed for 145 yards, something that probably even shocked Ingram, receiver Kenny Stills averaged 25-yards per catch and the Saints held the ball for nearly 40 minutes.I’m not sure if clinic is a strong enough word for what went down on the Bayou Sunday, but whatever word one chooses to describe it, it may serve as the end of the Monte Kiffin era in Dallas.Since Kiffin’s arrival at Valley Ranch, the Cowboys defense has gotten worse. Some thought that a new defensive philosophy would serve as the necessary change to catapult the Cowboys to a new level.Just didn’t think that catapult would send them into the ditch below the cliff instead of over it.For 2013, the Cowboys have the worst overall defense in the country. Ok, maybe not the country, but in the nation of the NFL teams, the Cowboys are in last place.This squad of bandits gives up a league worst 440 yards per game, 313 passing yards a contest, and 26 points each week, which isn’t worst in the league or the NFC, so there’s a starting point for the Cowboys.But what’s most important here is that Kiffin is only working on a one-year deal, so once that contract expires at the end of the season, he will not be retained. Team owner Jerry Jones hasn’t said so in the press, but no team can give up almost 700 yards in one game and hope to retain its defensive coordinator.Is the potential turnover, or almost for sure turnover at the end of the season, a good or bad thing for the Cowboys?By hiring a new defensive coordinator in 2014, the Cowboys defense will have to learn a new defensive philosophy for the second time in three seasons.So when will Jones finally allow stability to return to Big D? That may never come as long as he is general manager of the team he owns. But constant turnover, his inability to pick the right mix of coaches and players, the team’s record of 133-133 since 1997 serve as a reminder that the Cowboys aren’t making it to a Super Bowl anytime soon.Plus, isn’t that sort of amazing that over the past 16 seasons the Cowboys have just treaded water?Eh, maybe it’s not Monte Kiffin’s fault that the Cowboys defense is so bad. Maybe this all falls on the shoulders of the man who put the team together because now that former defensive coordinator Rob Ryan is living a good existence as the defensive coordinator for the Saints, Jones is having buyer’s remorse.Once the Cowboys miss the playoffs again this season, it will just lead to more mediocrity.What evidence do we have that positive change will come?-JHJason Henry is a team journalist for Pro Football Spot reporting on the Dallas Cowboys. He also hosts a weekly podcast called “The Jason Henry Project” where he talks sports, politics, news, and international affairs. Follow him on Twitter @JHenryProject.
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