If there’s a place to sit worse than the hot seat, Jason Garrett has located it.
The Dallas Cowboys‘ head coach finds himself under increasing scrutiny after the team’s third consecutive loss, this time to the previously-winless New York Jets. For yet another week, Dallas was ill-prepared and appeared generally disinterested to face their opponent — no excitement nor emotion to be found on the sideline.
All roads lead back, and all fingers point, to Garrett, who’s thisclose to falling on the sword for a Super Bowl-or-bust squad suddenly going belly-up.
“I’m disappointed. I didn’t think this would happen,” owner Jerry Jones remarked after the 24-22 defeat, which dropped the Cowboys to 3-3.
How close? Not as much as fans would prefer.
“I’m not even coming close to those future type considerations,” Jones said when asked about potential coaching changes, per The Athletic.
“I haven’t even glanced there in my mind about long-term future,” he added. “I’m looking in the future as next week against those Eagles.”
It’s beyond obvious now that Dallas isn’t what we thought they were last month: legitimate contenders. Following victories over the dregs of the NFL — the Giants, Redskins and Dolphins — the club crashed down to earth against elite competition (Saints, Packers). But losing to a glorified JV franchise led by a quarterback making his return from mono brings us to an increasingly sobering reality:
They’re getting worse.
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Cowboys Not Expected to Fire Garrett
That’s according to ESPN Cowboys insider Ed Werder, who asked a source whether Garrett was in immediate danger of losing his job. He received a “swift” and seemingly definitive response: “Absolutely not.”
This jibes with what Jones claimed following Dallas’ Week 5 defeat to Green Bay, shooting down speculation Garrett’s scorching seat could consume the 53-year-old at some point during the regular season.
“Well, yes. Dispel it, yes,” Jones said Tuesday on 105.3 The Fan. “Don’t bet any money against that happening. You’ll lose it.”
Jerry Eyeing Lincoln
Whether he admits it or not (he hasn’t, and won’t), Jones is mulling potential successors for Garrett. And, reportedly, has a name in mind. Per CBS Sports’ Jason La Canfora, Jones is “very intrigued” by Oklahoma head coach Lincoln Riley, who’s expected to listen to overtures in 2020.
“Several sources indicated Jones, if he does make a coaching change, is very intrigued by Oklahoma head coach Lincoln Riley,” La Canfora wrote Sunday. “Several league sources said Riley would be willing to seriously consider the right NFL openings in 2020, and, obviously, the Cowboys’ head coaching job is one of the most high-profile and coveted in all of sports.”
La Canfora reported the Cowboys overhauling its coaching staff with a slam-dunk hire like Riley isn’t a sure bet, but Garrett — whose contract is set to expire after the season — essentially is on the hot seat moving forward.
“Cowboys owner Jerry Jones is not considering any in-season changes to his coaching staff, as he recently said on his weekly radio show, but that should not be taken as an indication that Jason Garrett’s status for 2020 is not in question, according to sources with knowledge of the situation,” La Canfora wrote.
Follow Zack Kelberman on Twitter: @KelbermanNFL