ARLINGTON, Texas -- Jerry Jones said he loves the way Jason Garrett continues to mature as a head coach.
It's why Jones said he expects him to coach the Cowboys for years to come, even though Garrett is in the final year of his contract.
"I think Jason is going to be a better five years from now than he is today and he's a much better coach than he was five years ago," Jones said. "He's a growing, smart, hard-working coach who's getting some really great experience and he's getting it on our time.
"Jason, certainly, has a lot more positive attributes than he did when we started back in the spring, but he had more last spring than he had the year before. It's one of the logical reasons why you have a good future in mind for him, especially since we're having the success we're having."
Jones said Garrett has spent considerable time with defense this season to get a better understanding of how the Tampa 2 scheme works and how defensive coordinator Rod Marinelli wants the Cowboys to play the scheme.
Last season, Garrett spent so much time overseeing Bill Callahan as he put the game plan together that he basically left Monte Kiffin alone. By the time Garrett figured out the defense was a disaster, it was too late to make significant changes
Stephen Jones said Garrett is a better tactician, game manager and communicator than he was last year.
"He's got a great way of keeping everybody focused and playing together as a team.I don't think he'd ever let a player take any of this for granted. He's overall done a hell of a job being the head coach of this football team."
And that's why Jerry Jones scoffs when critics say Garrett is merely his puppet.
"I feel the exact same way I do when someone looks at you and really says I thought you called the plays," Jerry Jones said. "I'm surprised people would go there."