Earlier this week, Cowboys owner and general manager Jerry Jones ended any discussion of coach Mike McCarthy’s employment status, which hinged on winning against the Buccaneers on Monday night. On Friday, quarterback Dak Prescott added his two cents.
Via YahooSports.com’s Jori Epstein, Prescott called McCarthy’s speech “in trouble”comic, in a way.”
“12 straight wins [seasons] in you tell me how long and we’re talking about a guy’s job in jeopardy? said Prescott. “It just shows you when you play for this organization what comes with it.”
He is right. But it’s also a byproduct of Sean Payton’s availability. Four years ago, Jones tried to hire Payton. With Payton now attracting the attention of several teams after a year off (Broncos, Cardinals, Texans), if Jones ever hires Payton, it could be Jerry’s last and best chance.
The Cowboys are nonetheless trying to eliminate any noise that contradicts the idea that McCarthy is safe.
“That’s why it’s important to create those walls around us, to create that safe place in our locker room,” Prescott said. “Understanding what matters is the men who go out there and get between the lines and work through the week for us to come out and win.”
That’s what counts until the end of the season. At this point, however, people not in the locker room have decisions to make. And the decision wouldn’t just be to leave McCarthy. it would be, if it happened, to go from McCarthy to Payton.
Remember that. Jones wouldn’t fire McCarthy for venturing into a coaching quest that will lead who knows where. Jones would deliberately replace McCarthy with Payton.