Like us, former Cowboys’ safety Darren Woodson was taken aback somewhat by the remarks made by defensive end Jason Hatcher this week--Hatcher essentially said that the team has a leadership void--but he doesn’t necessarily agree that Dallas needs a vocal, “Ray Lewis-type” leader as Hatcher suggested.
“The rah-rah speech is not going to win games for you,” Woodson said, per ESPN Dallas. “And I don’t care who’s giving it to you–you can bring Knute Rockne back. No one is going to motivate you between the lines. It’s about preparation the week of, and it’s about the top guys in that locker room and your role players understanding their role on that football team.”
Back in Woodson’s day, the team actually did have a vocal, Ray Lewis-type leader in the form of Michael Irvin, but the level of accountability in those locker rooms in the 1990s was hardly the product of just one man. Guys like Tony Tolbert and Daryl Johnston, Woodson said, also played a major role in the direction of those teams, though unlike Irvin, it was rarely seen by the public.
“If a guy walked in late, you better believe Daryl Johnston was going to jump him for being late,” Woodson said. “If a guy fell asleep, you better believe Daryl Johnston was going to jump him. He was a role player who understood his role, but he was a leader and he was very well respected within that locker room.”
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