Hall of Fame wide receiver Michael Irvin doesn’t think his old team, the Dallas Cowboys, are in a bad place in terms of physical talent. But the mentality of this team holds them back from reaching the heights of, say, the Super Bowl-winning Dallas teams Irvin played for in the early- to mid-1990s.
“The Cowboys: 8-8, and probably four or five of those game they lost by less than three points. How close are they physically? They’re there. It’s mentally,” Irvin told ESPN Radio1250 in San Antonio last week, via the Dallas Morning News. “Can we make it unacceptable? It’s unacceptable to let that team make the next drive. It’s unacceptable for me, Jay (Novacek), Emmitt (Smith) to take the field needing a field goal or a touchdown and not come up with the play at that right moment.
“It’s unacceptable. When the Cowboys get that thing, that mentality that those things are unacceptable then they’ll win games. But they won’t before then.”
Jason Garrett has been unable to instill such a mentality in the locker room in three full seasons as head coach, and the Cowboys have finished 8-8 in each of those. Garrett has still never made the playoffs--Dallas last made it in in 2009, Wade Phillips’ final season in town--but Jerry Jones apparently remains confident in his head coach.
And, who knows. Maybe Scott Linehan can change the mindset.
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