In case you haven’t been a Cowboys fan the last, oh, 26 years, allow me to let you in on a little secret: Jerry Jones lies.
Well, fibs actually. Maybe – like all other NFL teams this time of the year – he simply misleads. When it comes to pre-draft rhetoric, Jones is one the best at saying what he isn’t thinking, and thinking what he isn’t saying.
It’s strategy more than sinning.
But when it came to answering yet another question about Johnny Manziel at Tuesday’s pre-draft press conference at Valley Ranch, I think Jones was actually shooting straight. Asked if the Cowboys would consider investing a first-round draft pick on a quarterback, Jones echoed what I and Roger Staubach have been screaming for months.
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“This isn’t rebuilding time,” Jones said.
Missing the playoffs four consecutive seasons and saving money by allowing DeMarcus Ware and Miles Austin to leave in free agency may look like a team in transition, but Jones remains adamant that his franchise isn’t voluntarily taking a step back now in order to move forward a couple in the future.
“We’re 8-8, but better than 8-8,” the owner said. “For some of the kinds of things we’re doing, we can get better than 8-8. But that’s where we are. We are Hell-bent to change that. I can speak to that.”
If the Cowboys were rebuilding they wouldn’t have retained head coach Jason Garrett, entering the final year of his contract. Rebuilding teams with lowered expectations don’t have franchise quarterbacks in play. 4-12 the last four years? Yep, time to strip it down and rebuild, and take a high pick on a new quarterback that can develop as the new nucleus grows. But four straight 8-8s? Time to use the quality picks to fill the biggest holes to compliment the quarterback in place.
Said Jones, “If we can have some luck – or not have bad luck with Romo – then we’ve got a chance.”
For once, I believe Jerry is telling us the truth.
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 currently lives in McKinney with his wife, Sybil, and two very spoiled dogs.