By now, we’ve all heard the news about Mike McCarthy being hired by the Dallas Cowboys, replacing Jason Garrett, who had been the head coach since 2010.
Our readers know football pretty well, so I wont bore you with all the information you know already. I’m not breaking any news here, but there’s a lot to digest, so let’s get into it.
McCarthy was obviously successful in Green Bay. He won a Super Bowl in 2011, had a 125-77-2 record and made the playoffs nine times in 13 seasons. Most coaches would be pretty happy with a 13-year span like that.
Green Bay was a contender nearly every year, haunting the Cowboys during his tenure. He has a 7-3 record against the Cowboys and ended their playoff run in 2014 and 2016 in the divisional round.
Before we go any further, I’d like to mention that Cowboys owner Jerry Jones also interviewed Marvin Lewis. Yes, that same Marvin Lewis who couldn’t win a playoff game.
Some franchises may count play off appearances as success, but this is Dallas. The Cowboys just fired Garrett for his lack of playoff success.
Jones wanted an experienced NFL head coach.
For the past couple of years, names like Lincoln Riley were mentioned as candidates to replace Garrett, and why not? The Cowboys had won a Super Bowl before with a former Sooner head coach in Barry Switzer, and before that, it was former Miami head coach Jimmy Johnson who brought the Cowboys back to championship form.
It wasn’t irrational for people to think Jones might explore the college ranks for its next head coach.
Thinking about the Cowboys since Jones took over, it’s easy to see we are not dealing with the same guy who brought Super Bowls to Dallas. He has become conservative and wants to play it safe.
Johnson and Switzer were energetic individuals with great personalities. Since then, only coaches with NFL experience or coaches who Jones was comfortable with have been hired.
And this brings us back to McCarthy.
McCarthy is a good coach, and he has had the highest level of success in the NFL along with the experience of developing an up-and-coming quarterback in Aaron Rodgers — which is probably a big reason he was hired as well.
Since his success with the Packers, though, the game has changed.
Was his lack of evolution the reason Green Bay’s success started to dwindle in the end? Even with Rodgers, who you could argue is the best quarterback in the NFL, he couldn’t bring Green Bay back to playoff success.
It is possible, but one thing is certain, coaches who don’t evolve, don’t sustain success.
If McCarthy has indeed evolved, can he help develop Dak Prescott? If so, then Dallas may have its guy.
He will have a five-year contract to get this thing going, and 2020 should be an exciting year for the Cowboys.
And with this coaching change, just maybe, it will finally be their year.