Monday, October 12, 2009
Time for Wade to go
I'm usually pretty slow on the draw to believe firing a coach -- especially in mid-season -- is a good move. That's what the knee-jerk armchair QBs want. Most often, the problems go well beyond the head coach and a firing doesn't solve anything.
But there are exceptions, like in Dallas today. Jerry Jones needs to pull the plug on the Wade Phillips experiment. Now, during the bye week. This team is in a fog, playing sloppily, carelessly, without discipline. This has been happening, going back to 2008, for the equivalent of a full season. It's hard to watch and getting harder to care.
Yesterday's game at Kansas City may have been a matchup of the poorest talent vs. the poorest-coached team in the NFL. Had the Cowboys lost, I'm sure Phillips wouldn't make it through the week. But that they won, 26-20, in overtime shouldn't blur what's really happening.
This team needs a jolt, a shock. The best one would be a message that just because it's a win doesn't excuse the direction this franchise is headed. People are fed up. These players need to understand their lackadaisical and unfocused play isn't going to cut it and it cost the head coach his job.
Phillips isn't going to last past this year anyway. Certainly, it's not all his fault, but he bears the brunt of the responsibility. He's too nice, too accepting of the status quo. Remove Phillips. Install Jason Garrett as interim head coach. See how the remaining 11 games play out.
If it's no better, it may be time to cast a look at Mike Shanahan or Jon Gruden in the off-season. If it works out, the Cowboys know they have their head coach for the immediate future. But the way things are now is totally unacceptable and embarrassing.
The thing is, it was a curious hire by Jones to begin with. It was surprising, after last year's 44-6 debacle to end the year in Philly, that Jones didn't fire Phillips in the off-season. That would be admitting a major mistake. So I suppose it's folly for Jones to swallow even a portion of his ego and cut his losses in mid-stream.