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Cowboys Still Searching for Head Coach

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    NEWSLETTERS

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    Interim head coach Jason Garrett of the Dallas Cowboys during a game against the Washington Redskins at Cowboys Stadium.

    Cowboys owner Jerry Jones wants the search for the next coach to be short.

    Jones expects to decide within days if he'll remove the interim head coach tag from Jason Garrett and give him the job or go with another candidate.

    Jerry Says No Coach Has Been Hired

    [DFW BLUE STAR] Jerry Says No Coach Has Been Hired
    Before the Cowboys final regular season game Sunday, Jerry Jones says nothing has changed in regard to head coach. More at NFL.com and DallasCowboys.com. (Published Monday, Jan 3, 2011)

    "Days, days. Not a week," Jones said said.

    He may have tipped his hand after Sunday's 14-13 win against Philadelphia when he was asked if the new coach would have input into hiring the rest of the staff.

    "That is certainly something that Jason needs to have input in," Jones said. "By the way, Jason had input in many of the staff members we have right now."

    Jones said he hasn't interviewed any candidates, though Garrett is surely the front-runner. He went 5-3 since replacing Wade Phillips at midseason. Jones said he was very pleased with Garrett's performance over the second half of the season.

    "I would absolutely love to be this team's coach," Garrett said.

    Garrett wanted to talk about the victory, not his future, but did say he would hold a final team meeting Monday morning.

    It could be his last one on an interim basis. Jones, though, says he plans to interview candidates after the season finale. He wants to interview wide receivers coach Ray Sherman, which would satisfy the league's rule about interviewing minority candidates. Jones also would consider speaking to candidates outside the organization.

    "I'm really interested in following the spirit of the NFL rules and that's what this is all about," Jones said. "I just want to move on so that we can have the coaching decisions out of the way and move on and do what we need to do."

    Jones says he won't require an interview with Garrett.

    "I know him real well," he said.

    He did predict "significant turnover" for a team that saw its Super Bowl hopes vanish after a 1-7 start. Jones refused to say the Cowboys would have turned the season around faster had he fired Phillips earlier in the season.

    The Cowboys' three losses under Garrett have been by a total of seven points. Among those were field-goal losses to Philadelphia and defending Super Bowl champion New Orleans.

    "We're not as good as I thought we were when we started," Jones said.

    Garrett is working under a special contract as interim coach. Once the season ended in Philadelphia, he was still under his previous contract as assistant head coach-offensive coordinator. That means he could interview with another team, too, one reason Jones would speed up his timetable.

    "He's proved a lot to everyone on the outside," linebacker Keith Brooking said. "Everyone on the inside saw immediately his approach. I said the first day he took over, he's been planning for this his whole life."

    The last time Jones went on a coaching search was early 2007, after Bill Parcells left.

    "From this moment on, I'm going to be real busy," Jones said.

    Dallas had a losing record for the first time since Bill Parcells went 6-10 in 2004.

    He won't be looking for a new quarterback. Tony Romo, out since breaking his left collarbone Oct. 25, is still the guy for the Cowboys. Stephen McGee made his first career start filling in for Jon Kitna, out because of a side injury.

    Romo said he had a great relationship with Garrett and supported his candidacy for the job.

    "I think it's obvious that he has done a lot of good things and we are lucky to have him here, no question," he

    NBCDFW's Matt Barrie contributed to an earlier version of this report.