ARLINGTON, Texas — Dallas Cowboys owner and general manager Jerry Jones had a one-word answer when asked if there was any scenario in which he would make an in-season head-coaching change in 2018 following his team’s 28-14 loss to the Tennessee Titans on Monday night.
“No,” Jones said.
Jones has made only one in-season head-coaching change since purchasing the Cowboys in 1989 and that was elevating Jason Garrett to his current role in favor of Wade Phillips after the Cowboys got off to a 1-7 start to the 2010 season.
The loss to the Titans dropped the Cowboys to 3-5 at the midway point of the season, leaving them two games behind the NFC East-leading Washington Redskins. The Cowboys play the 4-4 Philadelphia Eagles on Sunday at Lincoln Financial Field.
“I think we realize we have eight games to go, we’ve got a long way to go in this season,” Jones said. “We want to play better than we played tonight, so I certainly think each individual and coach and front-office person is going to have to do better, including me.”
At the bye, Jones traded for wide receiver Amari Cooper, sending the Cowboys’ first-round pick in 2019 to the Oakland Raiders, and Garrett opted to make a change with the offensive line coach, moving on from Paul Alexander in favor of Marc Colombo.
When asked if there could be a change with offensive coordinator Scott Linehan, Jones said, “I’m not anticipating any more coaching changes.”
The Cowboys hoped those moves would energize them coming into the Tennessee game, but the Cowboys failed to score a point in the second half.
“I very candidly didn’t see this coming,” Jones said. “I thought we would be sitting here with a positive result. This is a surprise to me and is a setback. Now when you’re halfway through the season, losing a ballgame in the NFL, if that causes you to be deterred or to not think that there’s a future ahead of you, then you’ve picked the wrong world to operate in. That’s not the life we’ve chosen.”
Since taking over for Phillips, Garrett has posted a 70-58 record with just two playoff appearances and one postseason victory. He was named the NFL’s Coach of the Year in 2016 after the Cowboys went 4-12 in 2015, their worst mark since Jones’ first year when they went 1-15.
“I don’t like the way we played tonight,” Jones said. “Had we played a lot better tonight and had the loss, then I would be more positive about that. We’ve got to play better. We’re not in anything if we don’t play better. We have to play better. We did not play good for whatever reason after that first spurt of energy in the early part of the game. We just didn’t play very well.”