- Calvin Watkins, ESPN Staff Writer
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The Dallas Cowboys have major decisions to handle regarding their franchise this offseason. Todd Archer and Calvin Watkins, along with some guests, answer some of biggest issues for the Cowboys this week.
Is Jason Garrett the right coach for the Cowboys?
Todd Archer: We’re about to find out. He is entering the last year of his contract and has to win or he is out. I’ve said this before, but I think Jerry Jones wants Garrett to be his Tom Landry. Does that mean he lasts 30 years? No, but it means he makes it to a second contract as the coach at least. Jones has showed patience with Garrett that he has not shown other coaches. What Garrett says and how he is trying to build makes sense. It’s how every team tries to get it done. I believe Garrett still has the room, which says something after three straight 8-8 finishes. The players play hard if not for him than for themselves because, as he says, they’re the right kinds of guys. That means something, too. He needs to be better on game day, there is no doubt. He needs to be better during the practice week, too. Jones has talked about wanting to see the payoff from those growing pains. Garrett gets one more chance. If he doesn’t get it done this year, then he will be out and Jones will look for the next “right coach,” for the Cowboys.
Calvin Watkins: Jason Garrett knows how to run a franchise. He understands how to get players to play for him and other coaches. He understands what type of player he wants. The problem with Garrett is the results. He's missed the playoffs in three full seasons as head coach. That can't happen again in 2014. He enters the final year of his contract as the best man to deal with Jerry Jones and his mercurial ways of running a franchise. Garrett knows about the Cowboys Way. He respects the tradition and history of the Cowboys. He just can't get the results to warrant a contract extension or confidence he's the man for the job. Garrett is the man for the job. He's got game-management issues, like some other coaches we've seen across the league, but Jones hasn't been a good general manager the last few years and that's hurt Garrett in some ways. Jones is an outstanding owner, which does help Garrett, because the head coach can get whatever he wants. But when Jones, the general manager, wants to take over, it hurts Garrett. So, while Garrett knows what he wants as a coach, the lack of playoff appearances are not helping him gain more job security.