After three consecutive seasons of middling--literally middling, as in three consecutive 8-8 finishes--Jason Garrett and the Dallas Cowboys broke through in 2014, winning the NFC East and winning a playoff game for the first time since 2009. They were arguably, as you surely remember, a controversial call away from advancing to the NFC Championship Game.
So what made this year different from the first three years of Garrett’s tenure?
According to owner and general manager Jerry Jones, it came down to collaboration.
“What really came to play this year as much as any time, was standing on the shoulders of Stephen [Jones], standing on the shoulders of Will [McClay], standing on the shoulders of a great staff of not just personnel, but also a real inclusive--led by Jason [Garrett]--group of coaches to help us evaluate and make decisions,” Jones said, per ESPN Dallas. “And it was a good experience. And it was one that we had some success in it. And so I know this is an old cliché, but that recognition really is for this organization.”
Of course, Garrett has already been rewarded for leading the way in this regard, signing to a new five-year, $30 million deal last week. His two top assistants, defensive coordinator Rod Marinelli and offensive coordinator Scott Linehan (whose title was actually passing game coordinator in 2014) have also agreed to new deals.
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