WR coach Ray Sherman won't return

Dallas Cowboys wide receivers coach Ray Sherman will not return to the coaching staff for the 2011 season.

Sherman was one of four assistant coaches whose contracts expired shortly after the 2010 season.

"My contract with the Dallas Cowboys is expiring at the end of the season," Sherman said in a statement. "I appreciate the opportunity that the Cowboys have given me. I was able to coach a great group of receivers who now have a tremendous foundation, giving them the ability to continue to excel for years to come in the NFL."

Sherman had been with the Cowboys since 2007 when he was hired by then-coach Wade Phillips.

Sherman interviewed for the Cowboys coaching job on Tuesday, but the position eventually went to Jason Garrett, who was elevated from interim coach on Thursday.

During the Garrett news conference, Stephen Jones, the Cowboys' executive vice president, said Sherman's interview wouldn't have any negative bearing on his future with the team.

"Oh, we wouldn't feel that way at all," Jones said. "I don't think Jason would either. What I think will happen there is we'll evaluate it based on what's best for the Cowboys going forward."

Sherman was a buffer between Terrell Owens and Garrett when the receiver was upset with the direction of the offense. Sherman also created "Keepin' it Real" Thursdays where the wide receivers could vent about what was troubling them.

Sherman's laid-back personality could be viewed as a negative with a combustible receiver like Owens. But Sherman had said he was a sounding board for Owens and rookie Dez Bryant, who also is a vocal receiver on the sidelines.

The deflection of Sherman is the first change to Garrett's coaching staff. Owner and general manager Jerry Jones said Garrett would have final say over the coaching staff and this move could lead to more changes.

Coaches John Garrett (tight ends), Wade Wilson (quarterbacks) and Chris Boniol (kicking) will have their contracts expire shortly.

Calvin Watkins covers the Cowboys for ESPNDallas.com.