|Monday, December 23
Report: Jones, Parcells to have another meeting
ESPN.com news services
Bill Parcells, out of coaching the last three years, said he met recently with Cowboys owner Jerry Jones for five hours and would consider returning to the NFL as a head coach -- if it were the right situation.
Sources told the Dallas Morning News on Sunday that Jones and Parcells have another meeting planned for next week.
Sources close to Jones told the newspaper if the second meeting goes smoothly, Jones could make an offer and would expect a response from Parcells right away.
The Morning News, citing sources close to Jones and Parcells, reported in Sunday editions that Jones has already decided to fire coach Dave Campo.
The Cowboys lost to the Eagles 27-3 on Saturday, marking their third straight 10-loss season under Campo. He's 15-32, prompting speculation that Jones will change coaches for the third time in six years.
Jones said Campo likely will remain the team's coach through the season finale Sunday in Washington. He made no promises beyond that, except to say a decision "is going to be very quick.''
"I want to be real clear about something: I have not made up my mind about what we're going to be doing with our head coach,'' Jones said. "There will be a time frame and it will be soon, just by the nature of it.''
Asked if a change would be made before the Redskins game, Jones said: "I don't think that would be the case. I can't think that would be the case.''
Parcells has coached the New York Giants, New England Patriots and New York Jets in a distinguished coaching career. He directed the Giants to two Super Bowl titles, and led the Pats to a Super Bowl appearance. Parcells is currently working as an NFL analyst for ESPN.
"I met with Jerry Jones on Wednesday," Parcells said in a statement Saturday. "We spoke for five hours. We discussed pro football, philosophy and the Cowboys. I have spoken to Jerry Jones several times over the years. He did not offer me a job with the Cowboys. Any speculation about the Cowboys head coaching job would be premature at this time."
Jones confirmed to ESPN's Suzy Kolber before Saturday night's Cowboys-Eagles game that he did not make an offer or negotiate with Parcells.
"We didn't talk about the job of coaching the Dallas Cowboys," Jones told Kolber.
Asked if he wanted Parcells as his coach, Jones told The Associated Press, "I don't want to get into that."
Two Dallas-area newspapers reported Sunday that Dolphins offensive coordinator Norv Turner could be a potential coaching candidate for the Cowboys next season if Campo is not retained.
According to the Morning News, Jones had gauged the interest of Turner through a third party and learned that Turner was interested in coaching the Cowboys if given the opportunity.
And according to the Fort Worth Star-Telegram, an unnamed source told the paper that Turner is interested in the job. When reached at his home Saturday night by the newspaper, Turner said he has not been contacted by the Cowboys.
In an interview with ESPN's Chris Mortensen on Saturday, Parcells insisted that he has not been offered a coaching position by anyone. He said he would only go to the right situation for him.
When asked about Jones' performance as Cowboys' GM, Parcells told Mortensen: "He wants to win. I wouldn't consider going to an organization that doesn't have this attitude."
Parcells turned down an offer to coach the Buccaneers in January. He told Mortensen that he just simply was not ready to take that position at that time. In a second interview Sunday, Parcells told Mortensen a second meeting with Jones has not been scheduled.
"My position has been the same for several weeks: I'm going to evaluate this season and take a look at it at the end of the season,'' Jones said.
Jones said Campo knew about the visit with Parcells, just like he knew about meetings in previous years with Bill Walsh and John Madden.
"That's my job, that's what I do -- visit with whoever I can to get information and use that to better run the Cowboys," Jones said.
Parcells hasn't coached since 1999, when he led the Jets to an 8-8 record. He had total control of the organization during his tenure there and was nearly lured out of retirement last offseason by Tampa Bay, but negotiations fell apart.
His name comes up when high-profile coaching jobs become available because of his track record for turning teams around.
After he won Super Bowls with the Giants following the 1986 and 1990 seasons, he took New England to the Super Bowl after the 1996 season. He led the Jets to the AFC title game two years later.
Hiring someone of Parcells' stature would probably require Jones giving up some control within the organization, and it would cost more than he's spent on coaches.
A big contract for Parcells or another high-profile coach might not be the only expense. Many assistant coaches have deals for two more years and they would have to be paid off, too, if the new coach wants to bring in his own staff. That leads back to the control factor, as Jones has often dictated the staffs, including coordinators.
"I think you're touching on issues that are legitimate things I've got to consider,'' he said.
Is Jones ready to break his own mold? Can he?
"I am what I am,'' Jones said. "I would have to change what I've been all my life. But I don't know if I am what I'm perceived to be.
"I've had some good things happen that I've gotten to be part of. There was a lot of give and take. I'm a salesman and there's nobody that can get to me quicker than another good salesman.
"But the facts are that I'm the ultimate decision-maker as long as I own the team. That's not an issue in any way that I know of.''
Information from The Associated Press was used in this report.