Will Jerry Jones win another Super Bowl?
Law of averages will fall Jerry's way
I know it's hard to believe right now, especially after consecutive 8-8 seasons, but Dallas Cowboys owner Jerry Jones will figure it out and win another Super Bowl.
Make no mistake, this is Jones' team. He's made smart decisions with his franchise in the past, and he has three Vince Lombardi trophies to show for it -- credit Jimmy Johnson all you want.
When Dave Campo was mired in three consecutive 5-11 seasons, Jones did the right thing by hiring Bill Parcells, getting out of the way and letting the Hall of Fame coach rebuild things.
After Parcells left, Jones made the right hire in getting Wade Phillips to finish what Parcells started. After a disastrous 2008 season, Jones told Phillips he needed to change. No more $100 fines. No more coddling players.
Phillips and the Cowboys responded with the team's first playoff victory in ages. But Jones' mistake was letting Phillips slip back to his old habits, which eventually led to the coach losing his job.
Jones again made the right hire, bringing aboard Jason Garrett and his offensive mindset. Jones wanted Garrett to succeed and stepped back, again, to let the young coach implement his plan.
Garrett has had good plans, yet he's struggled at times on game day. As a result, Jones has had to watch the playoffs from afar.
So what did Jones do? He lived up to his word about making things uncomfortable for the entire coaching staff. Like it or not, it was the right thing to do. And that vibe also may have trickled down to the players, who understand that if Garrett doesn't get the job done in 2013, somebody else will take over.
Should Jerry Jones be on edge? What owner is on edge? It's his team and he can do whatever he wants.
Jones is not without fault. Some of his draft selections have been terrible. However, he does want to win, and he has proved that he'll spend money to do it -- the Cowboys' payroll has been among the NFL's highest the last three seasons.
Jones wants to win a Super Bowl. He really does. Badly.
At some point, the law of averages will fall his way and everything will work.
At some point, the team will stay healthy.
At some point, the quarterback won't commit mistakes in key situations late in the season.
And, at some point, Jerry Jones will get to hold a Vince Lombardi trophy in his hands for the fourth time.
Maybe not this year, but it will happen.
Why? Point the finger at the GM
You're surely sick of seeing this stat by now, but the Dallas Cowboys' one playoff win in 16 seasons is a pretty good predictor for the franchise's future as long as Jerry Jones is in charge.
The problem isn't Jerry the owner, of course. That guy is a marketing genius who is willing to pay whatever it takes to put the best product on the field in his $1.2 billion football palace.
Too bad he won't fire that failure of a general manager he sees in the mirror every morning.
Jerry footed the bill as Jimmy Johnson built the foundation of the '90s dynasty. This franchise began its descent into mediocrity as soon as Jerry insisted that he needed to have his fingerprints all over the football operations, although they managed to squeeze out one last Super Bowl with Barry Switzer, proving the 500-coaches theory correct.
It isn't just Jimmy's departure that has doomed the Cowboys into a consistent state of also-ran status. You could make a strong argument that the salary cap has been a bigger factor in the Cowboys' lack of success since the glory days.
With an unlimited payroll, Jerry could just pay more to make up for personnel mistakes. And he could throw money at the cream of the free-agent crop every offseason if he so desired.
Sorry, but the salary cap is here to stay. That means there will always be a premium on cap management and personnel evaluation, which obviously aren't the strengths of the general manager with the best job security in all of sports.
There will always be convenient scapegoats for the Cowboys' shortcomings. Coach Jason Garrett and quarterback Tony Romo top that list right now.
But there have been six head coaches and 15 men who have started at quarterback for the Cowboys in the last 16 seasons, with Garrett's name on both lists. There have been dozens of assistant coaches and hundreds of other players, too.
There has been just one general manager, and he isn't going anywhere as long as Jerry owns the team.
Given that, it'd be silly to think Jerry will get his fingerprints on another Lombardi Trophy.
103.3 FM ESPN PODCASTS
Herm Edwards joins Fitzsimmons & Durrett to discuss the NFL combine and Cowboys' offseason. Edwards says Rod Marinelli is the key to the defense this season, not Monte Kiffin. He also talks about what it would be like to work for Jerry Jones.
Ed Werder joins Richard Durrett and Ian Fitzsimmons to discuss what he took away from the NFL combine and his conversation with Jerry Jones on the penthouse bus.