I was harsh to Wade Phillips during his time with the Cowboys.
Why? Because his team totally quit on him during a 45-7 loss to the Packers in mid-2010.
Because, despite an upset home playoff loss to the Giants in 2007, he ridiculously reminded fans that “being one of the last four teams (in the NFC) is an accomplishment we can proud of.”
And, mostly, because the self-proclaimed “Mr. FixIt” ambled aloof along the sidelines with not the demeanor of a head coach, but more a clumsy, dawdling employee just called out of some maintenance shed.
But, alas, in the wake of Sunday’s dominating Super Bowl 50 performance by his Broncos’ defense, I will hereby retire the moniker I used for Phillips in Dallas.
After 38 seasons in the NFL – his first job was with the Oilers in 1976 – Phillips finally has his first Super Bowl ring.
It was hard to not be happy for Phillips and former Cowboys’ defensive end DeMarcus Wade. And it was impossible to not be impressed at how Phillips’ defense shut down MVP Cam Newton and the NFL’s highest-scoring offense.
The guy that was fired by both Texas teams, and who was out of the NFL in 2014 without a job, found "Superman’s" kryptonite, holding Carolina to one measly touchdown.
The key? Phillips flooded the line of scrimmage, brought a variety of blitzes and dared Newton to be smart enough, and accurate enough, to beat Denver’s one-on-one coverage in the secondary. It was a mismatch.
The Broncos recorded seven sacks, forced four turnovers and proved that dabbin’ wins endorsements, but defense wins championships.
After the game Wade said he was thinking of his father, Bum, who raised him in righteousness and football near Houston.
“My dad,” Phillips said after the game. “He’s influenced everything in my life. I miss him. But we kicked the door in this time. I know he’d be proud of me.”
With a day to reflect on his accomplishment, Wade grew a tad more salty, evidenced by a post on his Twitter account:
A little Dab will do you, but too much Dab will undo you!
Okay, maybe from now on he’s Superdufus?
A native Texan who was born in Duncanville and graduated from UT-Arlington, Richie Whitt has been a mainstay in the Metroplex media since 1986. He’s held prominent roles on all media platforms including newspaper (Fort Worth Star-Telegram, Dallas Observer), radio (105.3 The Fan) and TV (co-host on TXA 21 and numerous guest appearances, including NBC 5). He lives in McKinney with his wife, Sybil, and two very spoiled dogs.