In the ESPN Sunday studio there was plenty of critism of Jason Garrett’s handling of the final minute of regulation in last week’s loss to the Arizona Cardinals and his subsequent unwillingness to claim blame.
Bill Parcells: "You have to be accountable. Everybody knows what happened. You have to stand up. You have to reiterate to them, ‘Listen, I made a mistake. This is a game that’s not without human error. But this situation goes back to situational football. You have to prepare for it in the summer. Go over these kinds of things repeatedly during summer and then on Fridays, periodically during the season, you have to take time to review them."
Herman Edwards: "When this situation occurs and the game is lost, as the head coach, you don’t wait until the middle of the week. When the game is over, as soon as it is over, you come to the locker room and you gather your football team together and you tell them this: ‘Look, I hold you guys accountable to play and preparation during the course of the week. I hold myself accountable as to what happened today. I didn’t manage the clock correctly. I screwed it up. It was all me.’ Then you go through the process of what you were thinking and why it happened…You want to hit it right after the game. That let’s your team know, I’m accountable to you guys as well as you guys are accountable to me."
Mike Ditka: "You can’t undo what happened. You’ve got to go to your football team, you’ve got to tell them very simply, ‘My bad. Here’s what I’m going to do from now on guys. I’m going to trust you because you are the players on the field. I’m going to put you in the best position I can for you to play your best football. I’m going to trust you to win the football game because players win football games.’"
Jimmy Johnson rips Jason Garrett’s timeout technique
The old Cowboys coach thinks his former backup QB isn’t on top of the timeout game. Of course, Johnson thinks Garrett shouldn’t be calling the plays AND managing the game. Johnson thinks he did it better, Here’s what JJ had to say on Sunday’s Fox pre-game show:
"Last Sunday I wanted to scream at the end of the Arizona-Dallas game because the hard work put in by all those players was for naught because of a split-second screw up at the end.
"I would have thought the Cowboys rectified their timeout issues, it was just three weeks ago when Romo called a timeout he didn’t have only to be saved when Washington’s Mike Shanahan called one first. When I coached, I managed the clock and every game situation.
"I coached two great quarterbacks, Troy Aikman and Dan Marino, but I never allowed them to call a timeout unless it was an emergency and preferably when they were looking at me. The biggest deficiency in a lot of head coaches – I’d say more than half the league – is their faulty use of situational football, clock management and the use of timeouts. Believe me, a screw up like that could cost the Cowboys a playoff berth."