Cowboys coaches fear firings

Updated: December 22, 2013, 4:14 PM ET
By Ed Werder | ESPN

There is concern internally that coach Jason Garrett and his entire coaching staff will be fired unless the Dallas Cowboys win the NFC East and reach the playoffs, a team source said.

Dallas will need to prevail against the Philadelphia Eagles in a winner-take-all season finale in Week 17. Garrett's Cowboys have lost winner-take-all games in the last week to end the past two seasons -- against the New York Giants in 2011 and Redskins in 2012.

The Cowboys rallied to beat the Washington Redskins 24-23 on Sunday to improve their record to 8-7 this season.

Despite lingering tension between Garrett and Tony Romo after the coach singled out the quarterback for wrongly changing a run call into a pass before last week's game-turning interception against the Green Bay Packers, where the Cowboys lost despite leading 26-3 at halftime, Romo has tried to send a message of encouragement to teammates, sources say.

If the Cowboys protect the football and put up points as they have been, Romo told them, then they can be a team that has a chance.

"We have to stand up and stay together," tight end Jason Witten said.

Romo threw a 10-yard touchdown pass to DeMarco Murray on fourth down with 1:08 remaining Sunday to lift the Cowboys past the Redskins.

Ed Werder

ESPN NFL Insider

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