Chat with Jean-Jacques Taylor
Welcome to ESPNDallas.com! On Tuesday, columnist Jean-Jacques Taylor stops by to chat about the Dallas sports scene.
Taylor joined ESPNDallas.com in August 2011. A native of Dallas, Taylor spent the past 20 years writing for The Dallas Morning News, where he covered high schools sports, the Texas Rangers and spent 11 seasons covering the Dallas Cowboys before becoming a general columnist in 2006.
Send your questions now and join Taylor Tuesday at noon CT/1 p.m. ET!
Jean-Jacques Taylor (1:10 PM)
Sorry for the brief delay, but there was a slight internet glitch at the place I'm chatting. It has been resolved, so let's roll. Cowboys, Rangers, Mavs, college football, it's all fair game
Jake Stover (NY)
Will the cowboys win the division? If they did how far could they go in the playoffs?
Jean-Jacques Taylor (1:11 PM)
I'm not Nostradomus bro. I think we'll have an answer after their game against the NYG on Sunday. To me, this game defines the season because with a win they can essentially knock out the NYG and make it a two-team race with a chance to win it all against Philly in the last game
Chris (Phoenix Az )
I watch a lot of football and see underneath routes wide open at times. When I watch Dallas It seems Romo has to fit every ball in. Are WR not open or is he missing open WR
Jean-Jacques Taylor (1:14 PM)
I'd say it's a combination of both. At times, guys fail to get open. Other times, he's been inaccurate or thrown it a tick late. Either way the offense hasn't been productive enough
Dennis (Dallas, TX)
I read your article about Garret needing and trying to get more out of Romo. And even though I could not agree with you more about Romo living up to his contract and the urgency to play great due to our defensive "issues", do you see around the league how bad defensive play is connected to bad QB play? Who are the "elite" QBs again? Seems like many of this seasons best teams have strong defenses. The teams with bad defenses SEEM to have bad QBs. I believe this is because the offense and defense work in connection with another. When a team is losing and has little confidence in stopping their opponent from making the deficit even larger, this puts the offense in a compromising position. We could try to run and possibly end up with a 3 and out possession or just put everything in the hands of our good but sometimes erratic QB (which I believe any QB would be passing 50 times a game with no running game or defense). Also factor in how the opposing defense has the confidence to play aggressively against a now one dimensional offense. The last 2 seasons we were force fed the notion that Eli was elite, but look at his individual play this season. But now that their defense is returning to form they are winning and we should start hearing the Eli the Elite talks any minute... I guess I just need help understanding why more emphasis would be put on the QB and our offense when our defense is maybe the worst in cowboy history. Even if Romo plays at elite level, can a team make the playoffs and do anything in the playoffs with a defense this bad?
Chip (Wichita Falls, TX)
We all know that the Boys have a lack of depth on their team but, can you see Cowboys getting new OC's and DC's next season?
Bryan (Springdale, AR)
Tom Brady goes ballistic on a ref and the media doesn't harldy mention it, and if they do they justify his anger over the call. Dez Bryant gets almost now targets against the Lions, doesn't complain but is encouraging instead, and he gets roasted by the media. Misguided outrage by those who don't know what they are doing.
JJT (1:17 PM)
First, it's not that big a deal. The world is not fair. We all see folks get away with stuff at work that we'd get killed for all of the time. Three SB rings gets you a lot of passes
Brett Z (New York)
Hey I'm wondering with The Cowboys current cap situation for next year being $31 million over the cap, what moves do you think will be made? Also will Jerry Jones realize that although he has built a talented roster he is not the right man for the GM position? He has been the one real constant over the last 16-17 years of this mediocre franchise. Everyone says he's such a smart business man, but not smart enough to realize he is a problem?
JJT (1:19 PM)
Let's finish this season before we start figuring out who's gone and who stays. At least let's wait until the team is eliminated from the playoffs. The cap is a fluid number that's always moving. Off the top, Miles Austin will be gone for sure unless something surprising happens. The rest we have to see. Heck, it might depend on who's is coaching the team
Time for the Cowboys to step up and take what they want. Make this game and the Giants season be over early in the 4th quarter. Even bad defenses play well every now and then.
JJT (1:20 PM)
That's a little easier said than done. The Giants get paid too, right? The Cowboys know the importance of this game. You should get their best effort. They've had a week off and they've had success in NY
Poneka [via mobile]
Do you think Mavs will make a trade for a defensive player later this season?
JJT (1:22 PM)
Who do you have in mind? They will have a lot of depth and a lot of good players, so anything is possible. But we're so early into the season that, for the most part, we don't know what we don't know
Jerry Jones says he "likes the pain" of public criticism after tough losses. Do you think that's honest?
JJT (1:23 PM)
No, but I think he tolerates it and handles it better than almost any other significant person in sports. He doesn't let it bother hinm and he doesn't take it personal, although he will call you if he thinks you've crossed the fairness line or been wrong
Brian (San Antonio)
How high do you think Dirk can climb on the NBAs all time scoring list (should pass Reggie this week)?
JJT (1:25 PM)
I haven't thought about that. I'm more interested in if he'll continue to get quality looks and if he can stay healthy. If those two things happen, he'll average about 20 points a game, which would be fantastic for a 35 YO dude
Jake Mullin (Burleson, TX)
What are you thoughts about taking more shots downfield? I'm sick of the dink and dunk stuff. Get vertical with it. The least that can happen is that it scares the defense. You agree?
JJT (1:26 PM)
When you have Dez Bryant you should take some shots deep just like you should take some shots deep with TWilliams. Callahan's interpretation of the offense puts more emphasis on short throws and running after the catch. It lacks overall creativity.
Richard (Henderson, TX)
I don't see the Cowboys winning more than 1 game the rest of the way -- but we'll say they get two by virtue of NFL weirdness. Does JG keep his job at 7-9?
JJT (1:27 PM)
If you think Garrett is the reason for the losing, then you fire him. If you think it's bigger than Garrett - defensive injuries, poor play calling, over-the-hill DC - then keep him and improve the staff around him.
JJT (1:28 PM)
Firing coaches over and over again doesn't help. Only Oakland, Buffalo and KC have had more coaches than Dallas since 1997
COWBOY DARYLE (BAY AREA)
JJT can you admit you are dissapointed in the results from this team under Garrett, would you at all be surprised if he is FIRED if they miss the playoffs.....He just doesnt have the x's and o's pedigree to fool other teams and has basically ruined this offense.
JJT (1:32 PM)
I'm a big picture, process guy. I'm not a results guy because a flawed process can occasionally lead to a good result. That good result, though, can be impossible to sustain becasue the process is flawed. If the process is sound, eventually you will get a good result and the result will be sustainable. Part of the problem is the owner/GM involves himself just enough to make it hard on the coach. You're mistaken, if you think automatically firing Garrett will result in more wins. Garrett's process is sound, he just needs to win enough games to show up in the results
Jose (Daytona beach fl)
I have been watching the cowboys since 1980, read many of your articles, and I am very frustrated, but I cant help to defend that fact that they indeed have young rookie defenders, and really a noname amatureusitic defense, not much quality. I did not expect much from the line this year, more from coaching. I do see them getting better with Wilcox, but Heath is a Special teams player, they need to draft better talent at Safety, Nose, and a better guard to replace Waters.
JJT (1:32 PM)
Raul (Rio Grande City)
JJT, do you think we are close like Jerry says or is he trying to down play the lack of talent on the team
JJT (1:33 PM)
I like Jerry, but I don't pay attention to much of what Jerry says about talent or lack of talent
Brian (San Antonio)
Who is the best coach in the Metroplex right now and what are your justifications? Carlisle has my vote.
JJT (1:34 PM)
I'd say Carlisle. Good game tactician and holds players accountable
Reggie S. (Washington DC)
Eli, possibly Cutler, and possibly A.A.Ron Rodgers in the last 6 games. Any hope the DC defense can hold at least one of them under 400 yards?
JJT (1:35 PM)
depends on if Cutler and ARod are healthy. Gonna have a hard time keepiung Eli under 400
Tony (Richmond, CA)
Win it all against Philly in the last game? How did that workout for Romo and the Cowboys in similar situations against Washington and NY?
JJT (1:37 PM)
Those games were on the road. I'd be surprised if it wasn't different at home
What's Andre's reason for getting a pass? Not rings.
JJT (1:37 PM)
I don't think he has a history of meltdowns and folks think Schaub is a scrub
Ray (from Southside)
JJT great article on Garrett the other day...why has the pass def been so bad all year long?? is it cause all of the injuries to the dline or these guys really cant cover??
JJT (1:41 PM)
How many safeties ahve the Cowboys used. Against Detroit, they played the fourth quarter with two undrafted rookies - one from South Carolina State and one from Grand Valley State. Barry Church, I think, is a pretty good player, but he's only started a handful of games. As for the DL, the Cowboys have used 17 players this season, which is a joke. Injuries aren't an excuse, but it can get to the point where injuries compromise your ability to perform. That's what has happened to the D, which won't have its best player this week.
Which individual matchup is most important for the Cowboys to take advantage of this Sunday?
JJT (1:43 PM)
this is a game where Hatcher and Ware must be in beastmode. They must pressure Eli and make him uncomfortable,. They're not going to shut down NYG, but if they can hold them to 28, it might be enough. The only way to do that is be pressuring Eli and knocking him around
Tino Gianacopulos (Mexico)
You like Garrett we get that. What can we expect from the offense now that he's more involved in it?
JJT (1:44 PM)
I was asked about Garrett, so I answered. I would say a few more shots deep and a few more passes to Dez
Of the injured who do we expect to suit up in NY?And do you think we'll see more zone or man on the Giants wideouts?
JJT (1:45 PM)
Players are off on Tuesday, so I haven't started focusing on Giants just yet. It starts Wednesday
JJT Do you think the Cowboys should rest ware and just tell the o go outscore the Giants and Raiders so we have demarcus for the stretch run? We already saw him come back too soon against the Saints
JJT (1:46 PM)
I don't think this team is good enough to sit one of its best players and asssume the games down the stretch will mean anything. They have a hard enough time winning with Ware
I'm also confused about Murray's workload (or lack thereof). Even if you acknowledge that the coaching staff much prefers the passing game, or that they're concerned (with good reason) that he's too injury prone to handle 20-plus touches per game, there's been little doubt about a) his effectiveness, and b) that we're to the point where jobs are on the line. In short, do you expect to see more emphasis on getting DeMarco involved for the rest of season?
Ben H (DFW)
Key to this weeks game is Miles Austin, you agree? As long as the ball doesn't get lost in the lights, we should win...
Darrin Stark Jr. (Denton, TX)
JJT! The Mavs are looking solid at 7-4. Do you think a trade-deadline pick-up is necessary for a strong playoff run?
JJT (1:49 PM)
the season is too young for that bro. Let's wait until the end of December and see where they're at. The nightly rotation is still evolving. No need to rush
Derrin (Plano, TX)
Is it a bad sign for RGIII and the Redskins when the usually reserved Darrell Green is speaking out against him publicly?
JJT (1:51 PM)
it's what happens when you lose and fail to meet expectations. No different than Drew Pearson or Emmitt SMith criticizing something about the Cowboys
Raul (Rio Grande City)
JJT, can u name the last player the Cowboys drafted out of TEXAS? why dont they like the longhorns or their players?
JJT (1:51 PM)
they traded for Roy Williams and gave him a bunch of money and he wasn't worth a flip. Wane McGarrity was a few years ago. The Cowboys want the best players. They don't care where they come from
JJT, in my estimation you hit the proverbial nail on the head when you mentioned Callahan's lack of creativity with play calling. The next logical question is why. It's reasonable to limit down field throws if Romo is injured and/or the O-line is poor as pass protection. Do you think either or both scenarios is contributing to the conservative play-calling?
JJT (1:53 PM)
Romo is not hurt other than the usual bumps and bruises associated with the NFL. Use 7-man protections then. You have to take some shots
Wes (North CA)
With Lee and Durant out, who will the three starting LB's be? Sims, Carter and...... Hopefully the return of Hatcher will help
JJT (1:53 PM)
Holloman might get the start at SLB. He has some playmaker potential to him
Dat Star (Dallas TX)
Do you believe that a QB with less talent than what most people say Romo has, but acctually loves the game of Football (or the Cowboys for that matter) could do better with the .... "little bit" of talent Jerrys has put on the field. I for one say YES I don't see the heart from Romo that i see from every other QB I have ever seen play Minus Ryan Leaf. Petty but now that he wear his hat to the front ITS A NFL HAT NOT A COWBOYS HAT. Don't think Romo cares about COwboys history or future.
JJT (1:57 PM)
Did you say that when he played with a punctured lung and cracked rib and led the Cowboys to an OT win over SF. Lack of performance does not always equate to lack of caring. Romo cares, he just doesn't always perform well. That said, he performs better than most. He might win a SB if he was in Cincy
Bryan (Springdale, AR)
One traist RGIII and Garrett have in common: always being positive in the face of adversity. The problem with that is that it gives off the perception that you are avoiding reality as well. It's ok to acknowledge problems and still be positive.
JJT (1:58 PM)
it gives off that perception to you. You don't know what he says to the guys in the locker room. As an athlete, it does you no good to tell the truth most of the time. Folks can't handle the truth
JJT, you being the Ohio St. alum, whose schedule has or will be more impressive if they run the table, Baylor or Ohio St?
JJT (1:59 PM)
they look they have the same sked to me. Indiana, Michigan and Mich State in B10 championship doesn't seem much different than Okie State, a bad TCU team and Texas
Raul (Rio Grande City)
JJT, I believe that the longhorns should go after Briles and his staff...they've done an awesome job in Waco
Don (Berkeley, CA)
Will Jerry Jones ever wise up, or is he destined for Al Davis mediocrity due to his inability to let go?
JJT (2:01 PM)
If he keeps Garrett - even if they've missed the playoffs - then it means he's stopped with the reactionary moves and he's taking some responsibility for the failures of the team
Who is your pick to represent the Western Conference in the NBA Finals this year, barring major injury to a major superstar?
JJT (2:03 PM)
Bro, the season just started. Too early for that. Let's just see what shakes. The usual suspects SA, OKC, LAC, Rockets adn Golden State will be in the mix
juanito juanito (chihuahua mexico)
in your mind do you belive that garret is a puppet of jerry jones and thats why the lack of succes of garret, thinking if jerry jones not be placed in football things garret could be better
JJT (2:04 PM)
Nope. He has more control thsn modt folks think, but he has to win enough games to justify more. It's a tough job.
George (Elgin, Illinois)
JJT..I just don't think we have the right coaching staff here - especially the head coach. I'm tired of him saying after every loss "We have to learn from this and move forward" same old story. I just don't think Garrett is the right coach for the job. Do you think his job is in jepordy? Especially if this team blows a golden opportunity in winning this sorry division this year? Your thoughts...thx
JJT (2:05 PM)
I don't know how many different ways to say it. He's got to win more games, but you only fire him if you think Garrett is the primary reason the Cowboys are losing. I see other issues before I get to him.
JJT (2:05 PM)
great chat guys. Let's do it again next week. Peace, Love and Sooooooooooooul!!!