The League

Richard Boadu & Claude Clayborne
6Magazine co-editors

Richard Boadu & Claude Clayborne

Publisher/Co-Editors of 6Magazine - a football and hip-hop culture digital magazine

Jerry Jones: Architect of mediocrity, enabler of failure

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By Aaron Stern

Two months ago, the preseason hype was that Tony Romo, Jason Witten and DeMarcus Ware were going to raise the Vince Lombardi Trophy on the synthetic grass surface of Cowboys Stadium this season. That was 60-some brutal days ago.

On Sunday the Cowboys were blown out in a game they looked disinterested in, and yesterday head coach Wade Phillips got canned. In nine short, savage weeks, America's Team has imploded: The franchise quarterback has been lost - likely for the season - while the defense has collapsed and the collective team effort has evaporated. Wade Phillips is responsible for two of those three things, and at 1-7 Jones was right to do anything he thought might defibrillate his team into action.

But as Jones talked gloomily Sunday night about his team's future and offered only the most thinly veiled threats about the impending ax fall on Sunday night, there was little suggestion that any problems with his team rose any higher than Phillips. He ought to reconsider.

Jones, the team owner, president, and general manager, should strongly consider that he, himself, is a large part of the problem. After having instant success as an owner during the early 1990s, Jones' teams have done little more than create - and fall well short of - big expectations since then. They have won one playoff game since 1996. One. It's an embarrassing track record, and not one that Phillips is responsible for - that's his playoff win on that scoreboard, and his regular season record was a respectable 34-22.

Still, it's easy to pin this season on Phillips. But this swan dive is the culmination of a decade of aggressive mediocrity for a team that never lives up to expectations. Jerry Jones knows how to evaluate talent (Miles Austin and Tony Romo support that). But his preference over the last decade for mild-mannered coaches that bend to his will (Parcells being the obvious exception) and allow him to meddle in the team's day-to-day operations have left the organization with murky leadership and little more than a lot of potential, year in and year out.

Jerry Jones won't have his grand celebration in February, but if he's interested in raising the Lombardi Trophy in anyone else's stadium anytime soon he might want to take a look at Daniel Snyder's hiring of Mike Shanahan and hire a head coach as self-assured and committed to winning as he is - and then get the heck out of his way.

By Richard Boadu & Claude Clayborne  |  November 9, 2010; 11:35 AM ET  | Category:  Dallas Cowboys , Jerry Jones , NFC , NFL Save & Share:  Send E-mail   Facebook   Twitter   Digg   Yahoo Buzz   Del.icio.us   StumbleUpon   Technorati  
Previous: When in crisis, watch your blind side | Next: Wade is out but problems remain

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