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Defensive Struggles Made Phillips Expendable

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    NEWSLETTERS

    It’s difficult to attribute Wade Phillips’ canning on Monday to any one particular flaw in a Cowboys team that is a veritable cornucopia of flaws, but it’s likely that, more than anything, it was the unthinkably poor play of Phillips’ defense over the last three weeks-- a span in which they’ve surrendered no less than 35 points in a game.

    This presumably marked a change in the way owner Jerry Jones viewed his head coach; after all, it’s not as though Phillips’ abilities as a leader hadn’t been called into question before. What had changed was that, in previous seasons, Wade the defensive coordinator had flourished, whether or not it was reflected in wins and losses.

    With the defense struggling to such a degree, Phillips became suddenly expendable.

    “When we started having the problems we’re having over there, that compounded the overall team thing,” said Jones, per ESPN Dallas. “There was a lot of me in denial for at least the last couple of ball games. But where we are right now is that we’ve got to be able to do the biggest challenge everybody does in the NFL and that is get a defense that can slow them down.”

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