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Making Sense of the “Garrett Guys” Behind Cowboys Dez Bryant Release

Sean Martin

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Making Sense of the "Garrett Guys" Behind Cowboys Dez Bryant Release 1
(AP Photo/James D Smith)

As reality sets in for the Dallas Cowboys that their franchise leader in touchdown receptions is no longer part of their team, Dez Bryant's departure has shed light on some other potential harsh realities for America's Team.

In his "exit interview" with NFL Network's Jane Slater, Bryant was an open as always - this time about how his final days with the Cowboys went down around the organization.

Jon Machota on Twitter

Dez Bryant to @SlaterNFL: "This situation was very unfair to me." Added that former teammates he called "Garrett guys" worked against him. "I truly believe that. I want them to know that I know. I'll shoot them a text message and let them know.

The sticking point from Bryant's interview concerns the head coach that has stuck with the Cowboys (as a full-time HC) since 2011 in Jason Garrett. The Cowboys have shown an incredible level of commitment towards Garrett, who has rewarded them with seasons like 2014 and 2016 - winning the NFC East thanks to a core of players that should certainly be considered "Jason Garrett guys".

Near the top of this list of players is Dez Bryant, who now serves as the latest Cowboys example of how quickly rosters can turn over in the NFL. Ideally, the Cowboys are looking to build a roster full of players that want to fight for Jason Garrett - a coach that has seen many franchise players who carried him early in his career depart under his tenure.

There is no doubt that Garrett is truly on the proverbial hot seat for this 2018 season. On the heels of a 9-7 campaign, the Cowboys likely need to return to the playoffs to see Garrett continue leading this team. To do so, it feels like they'll be relying on less "Garrett guys" than ever, but is this really the case?

Making Sense of the "Garrett Guys" Behind Cowboys Dez Bryant Release

Dallas Cowboys QB Dak Prescott, HC Jason Garrett

No one person inside The Star made the decision this late in April to move on from Dez Bryant. This move was agreed upon by a majority of high-ranking Cowboys voices, at least some of which had soured completely on Bryant's overall impact on the team.

Jon Machota on Twitter

Dak Prescott on not having a say in Dez Bryant's release: "I'm in my second year so as much as you want to say, I want a say and this and that, those guys get paid a lot more than me and that's what those guys are there to do.

As we sit here on another Sunday without Cowboys football though, the Cowboys are not a better football team than they were at any point with Dez Bryant on their roster. The Cowboys are seemingly distancing themselves from Jason Garrett (as they possibly should be prior to the 2018 NFL Draft) under the facade that this team is built to be his.

If "Garrett guys" such as Quarterback Dak Prescott - firmly cemented as this team's starting QB for the foreseeable future - were able to have a say in Dez Bryant departing Dallas, than we are truly looking at a new era of Cowboys football.

A new era led by much of the same, which is why the Cowboys will continue to be viewed in the same light around the league. In all honesty, this is a team that will likely fall short with Jason Garrett as their Head Coach once again in 2018. Dez Bryant may even score a touchdown against the Cowboys to make matters worse.

The Cowboys ran out of scapegoats for mediocrity a while ago, recycling their ineptitude by branding it under their career 67-53 head coach. A coach that owes a significant portion of his success to Dez Bryant.

Surely, the Cowboys outlook for the future can brighten up following this month's draft. Similarly to last year's approach at cornerback, the Cowboys are confident in their ability to find talent in this year's class of wide receivers.

Adding up to ten new players in the draft only proves further that the Cowboys are a team in transition, for better or worse.

Dez Bryant's supporters can weigh in on which way the team that's now betrayed #88 is trending.

Tell us what you think about "Making Sense of the “Garrett Guys” Behind Cowboys Dez Bryant Release" in the comments below. You can also email me at Sean.Martin@InsideTheStar.com, or Tweet to me at @SeanMartinNFL!



Born January 28th, 1996- Cowboys Super Bowl XXX. Point Boro Panther, Montclair State Red Hawk, and most importantly a proud member of Cowboys Nation! I host "Upon Further Review" on 90.3 WMSC FM and wmscradio.com every Friday from 1-4 PM ET. Twitter: @SeanMartinNFL.

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19 Comments

19 Comments

  1. GoNavyBeatArmy

    April 15, 2018 at 10:12 am

    I’m sorry, Bryant’s word is accepted as ‘gospel’? His comments show me that he was paranoid for a long time.

  2. Eric wilson

    April 15, 2018 at 10:55 am

    Agreed. This had been talked about early during last season so you know he had to hear it from somewhere. Once the seed is planted…

  3. SmittyW

    April 15, 2018 at 11:09 am

    Betrayed? This author never interviewed anyone yet he draws these conclusions.
    Moronic!

    • Sean Martin

      Sean Martin

      April 15, 2018 at 8:00 pm

      Watch the Slater interview and check Dez’s Twitter timeline.

      • EverybodyTalks

        April 15, 2018 at 10:01 pm

        Dez made the accusation, saying he was a scapegoat and it was unfair, but never named names, except to say “Garrett Guys”. The rest, as to who are these ‘guys”, is left to speculation and opinion, leading to your article. Again, how was Dez betrayed? His contract was fulfilled. That they could have released him sooner, in itself is business, not betrayal.

  4. Chuck Wright

    April 15, 2018 at 11:28 am

    You lost me at Dez was a Garrett Guy. Which is not to absolve JG and SL for coaching ineptitude (oh how it scared me that SL takes over for JG) but 69 for almost 900 and 6 TDs isn’t that special. Cowboys are better, addition by subtraction. PS, JG owes success to Tony. . . .and a stout OL. . .and great running games. . . .I’ll wager offensive passing production way up this year.

  5. John McClain

    April 15, 2018 at 11:30 am

    Dez is the one who got himself cut. How bout taking a pay cut when you aren’t living up to your contract. 3 years of less than 900 yards plus crying about not getting the ball during a game that we are winning

    • MLV

      April 15, 2018 at 11:56 am

      Dude, you need to understand that contract was for the years he was all pro, he out preform his rookie deal, they needed to pay like the star he was at that time, his lack of production was not entirely his own, had to play with three of the worst WBs you could imagine Weeden, Cassel, Moore, came back to fast from broken foot, followed by knee injury, trying to get on same page with Dak in two years, oh, change in philosophy, passing team to running team, Facts!

      • alan reyes

        April 15, 2018 at 2:56 pm

        Most of that is true but it also shows that the team was correct to move on . Bryant and Romo grew up together and were exciting but not actually successful. There were a lot of games with 3 TDs and a lot with 3 INTs. In the end, the era had one playoff win and was .500.
        Bryant is now old and done.
        Thanks to Bryant and Romo for an exciting ride and now we start a new era of Dak, Elliott and a new main receiver. Time has moved on.

  6. alan reyes

    April 15, 2018 at 2:50 pm

    This writer seems to have an issue with the Head Coach having a say who is on the team. Actually, after ages of Jerry listening to no one, the idea the Head Coach being actually involved is a huge step forward.
    As to Bryant and the Boys, this site is caught up in a fantasy of Bryant rather than the current reality.The Bryant the site sees stopped existing in 2014.

    • Sean Martin

      Sean Martin

      April 15, 2018 at 8:02 pm

      I have an issue with how this team evaluates talent to reach the point of their Head Coach losing a player like Bryant, who I believe still could have contributed to this team in 2018.

      • alan reyes

        April 16, 2018 at 4:01 pm

        Bryant has been on the market 4 days and no one is signing him. Bryant is convinced and so are a lot of Cowboy fans, that Bryant is still a top receiver. The fact that the league knew for months that Bryant would likely be available and so assessed Bryant but no one is signing Bryant shows that those fans and writers are just overvaluing Bryant.

  7. pdstix78

    April 15, 2018 at 5:46 pm

    I think it’s a win for both sides. May serve as some humble pie for him and on the flip side, a change in culture for the Cowboys plus the opportunity for some new blood to step up to the plate

    • EverybodyTalks

      April 15, 2018 at 10:15 pm

      Good point and not just because I agree. Dez made the statement that if he didn’t have an “edge”, he does now. Dez and Romo were dependent on each others skill set, especially when you look at the last couple of years. Dak is growing into the QB position, whereas, Dez and Tony grew into their positions together. Dak was inaccurate at times, but Dez can’t afford to wait on Dak to get better, because he is over the top of his hill. Dez has talent that can be utilized by a more veteran QB. Alex Smith, if he gets picked up by the Redskins, may be the medicine Dez needs to get better.

  8. lawrence stacy

    April 15, 2018 at 6:52 pm

    Biased, preconceived article written on the writers personal thoughts. What has happened to responsible reporting?

  9. beachbum

    April 15, 2018 at 8:07 pm

    hahahaha, Jerry keeps making changes to everything but the coach and staff. He really believes Garrett can win him that Lombardi Trophy that he has been obsessed with winning since Jimmy Johnsons team left. Hate to burst your bubble JJ, but there is no way Garrett will ever win you a Super Bowl. First off, he’s going to have to win 3 or 4 playoffs games in a row to win it. Yes, he will have to beat 3 or 4 playoff teams in a row to win you your Super Bowl. If you truly believe he can do that….he’s your guy.

  10. oneputter

    April 16, 2018 at 8:38 am

    Complete BS on Dez being released. He was the scapegoat for everything that happened last season. Everyone’s production was down last year because of the OL problems, the RB problems and the QB problems. You have a TE that is no longer capable of opening up the middle of the field (for the last 2 yrs), let alone running a route beyond 15 yds but Dez gets released. You have an QB that has problems reading defenses, has problems with footwork, has problems on when to throw the ball, has problems with anticipating routes/coverages but Dez gets released. You have a RB that was suspended, you have back up RB’s with no where to run. You have a #2 WR who drops and body catches more balls than my 8 yr. old, you have a back up WR who can’t figure out the playbook or where to line up, you have a 5’4″ 130lb WR who gets manhandled at the LOS, and you have a rookie who gets no playing time…..but Dez gets released. You have coaches that……well don’t know how to.

    Now I get it, Dez was getting paid a lot of money and his production should have been better last year but it takes a team not just one player to be productive. Did he drop balls, yes he did. Julio had more drops than him and with a much better QB!

    Hopefully they have a plan ( i doubt it) but hopefully they do. There is no rookie who can come in make things instantly better. It takes a rookie WR 2-3 yrs at this level and we never play rookies so here, maybe 3-5.

    Once again, great job Jones family! you guys are real winners.

  11. Ddenney1

    April 16, 2018 at 9:42 am

    Dez has lost a step since his foot injury and NEVER ran good routes. He caused trouble on the side lines and cost way too much money for his work the last 3 years!!! I predict he will sign for a lot less money some where and have a couple of fair years and will be gone from NFL!

  12. Dave

    April 16, 2018 at 10:11 am

    I thought this article was all about Dez but half way through it, the writer starts his assault on HC Jason Garrett. So, for the hundredth time, let me explain the Jason Garrett situation. NO ONE ELSE OF SUBSTANCE WILL COACH DALLAS! No coach is going to subject himself to the Jerry Show! Jason does this and he does it very well. It’s not fair to attack/insult Coach Garrett.

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Star Blog

Cowboys en Español: Hablemos de los Coaches

Mauricio Rodriguez

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Cowboys en Español: Hablemos de los Coaches
Smiley N. Pool / The Dallas Morning News

Lamentablemente, la temporada 2018 de los Dallas Cowboys ha llegado a su fin. Lo hizo cuando el equipo visitó Los Angeles para intentar sorprender a los Rams en su propio campo en la Ronda Divisional de los playoffs. Ni siquiera con una invasión exitosa de la afición de Dallas pudieron ganarse un pase al Campeonato de Conferencia. En vez de eso, los Cowboys estarán viendo desde casa y la afición estará preguntándose: ¿qué sigue para los Dallas Cowboys?

Parece ya una tradición anual que no podemos dejar pasar. Este momento en el que comenzamos a cuestionar, una vez más, que entrenador es digno de quedarse en la franquicia y cual debe irse. En esta edición de "Cowboys en Español," hablaremos específicamente de los tres principales coaches en el equipo.

Cowboys DC Rod Marinelli Should Be On The Hot Seat

Coordinador Defensivo Rod Marinelli

El futuro del coordinador defensivo de los Dallas Cowboys no se puede tratar sin mencionar a Kris Richard. Fue la defensiva la que llevó al equipo hasta la postemporada y fue la unidad que cargó al equipo en muchas de sus victorias. Incluso con la llegada de Amari Cooper a Dallas, la defensiva fue siempre el pilar de la franquicia esta temporada.

Jaylon Smith y Leighton Vander Esch sorprendentemente se perfilaron como uno de los mejores duos de linebackers en toda la liga, la línea defensiva fue muy exitosa con Randy Gregory y DeMarcus Lawrence en los extremos y con la grata sorpresa que fue Antwaun Woods en el centro. La secundaria vio la mejor temporada en la controversial carrera de Byron Jones e hizo un excelente trabajo con un talento decente, pero no genial.

Todo esto, y el haber terminado como la sexta mejor defensiva en puntos permitidos (20.2) y la quinta mejor contra la corrida (94.6), hace a Rod Marinelli merecedor de una ronda de aplausos. Sin embargo, Richard probablemente merezca más aplausos.

Fue Richard quien revolucionó la defensiva de los Cowboys y la convirtió en un grupo mucho más agresivo. Fue él quien implementó jugadas de "blitz" en el equipo (algo no común con Marinelli) y quien en un punto de la temporada, comenzó a seleccionar las jugadas desde la banda.

En esta posición, me parece que los Dallas Cowboys tienen que enfrentar la dura decisión de decirle a Marinelli que es tiempo de dejarle el puesto a Kris Richard. Si bien no se llevó un trabajo de head coach, es muy probable que le llovieran ofertas a Richard si no se hace con el título de coordinador defensivo en Dallas.

Scott Linehan Acknowledges Need for New "Wrinkles" in Cowboys Offense

Dallas Cowboys OC Scott Linehan (Tim Heitman / USA TODAY Sports)

Coordinador Ofensivo Scott Linehan

Con un equipo tan polémico como este, la afición de Dallas no concuerda en muchas cosas. Sin embargo, lo hacen al hablar del pésimo trabajo que Scott Linehan ha realizado mandando las jugadas en ofensiva. Realmente ha sido doloroso de ver y es en mi opinión, el mayor problema que tiene el equipo actualmente.

Semana tras semana, fuimos testigos de pésimas decisiones en la ofensiva de los Cowboys. Vimos como el equipo se aferraba a llenar la caja de defensivos antes de correr el balón con Ezekiel Elliott. Vimos incontables pases pantalla en tercera oportunidad y largo. Pero no solo es lo que vimos, sino lo que no vimos.

A pesar de la innegable habilidad para correr el balón de Dak Prescott, Linehan se rehusó a explotar esta versatilidad de su QB. Vimos pocos "QB sneaks," jugada donde el mariscal toma el balón bajo centro y consigue poco yardage detrás del empuje de su línea ofensiva.

Siendo honestos, los Cowboys llevan dos años sufriendo por este coordinador. Dejarlo volver en el 2019 sería una decisión ridícula. Los comentarios en la radio de Jason Garrett no lucen prometedores, pero realmente sería una sorpresa que fueran ciertos. Linehan no debe volver... punto.

Jerry Jones Delivers Vote of Confidence in "Real Deal" Jason Garrett

Head Coach Jason Garrett

El futuro en esta posición será muy debatido durante los próximos meses, pero de los tres que hemos mencionado es sin lugar a dudas el más seguro de todos. Nos guste o no, Jason Garrett estará al frente del equipo la próxima temporada.

Garrett está lejos de ser un gran coach y aún le hace falta demostrar que puede cumplir las aspiraciones de los Cowboys de traer un sexto Trofeo Lombardi a casa. Pero siendo honesto, este equipo debería tener suficiente con Garrett y un par de buenos coordinadores. ¿El problema? No hay un par de buenos coordinadores en el equipo.

Sin embargo, Garrett ha demostrado que cuenta con el amor y apoyo de sus jugadores. Ha demostrado que efectivamente, puede ganar la división (lo ha hecho en tres de los últimos cinco años). Este año el equipo le dio la vuelta a la temporada después de comenzar 3-5.

Lo más preocupante en mi opinión, es la falta de urgencia para despedir a Linehan, por ejemplo. Quizá a puerta cerrada Garrett quiere un cambio en su staff, pero nunca lo sabremos.

Jason Garrett no es un coach excelente, pero podría ser suficiente para llevar a los Cowboys a un Super Bowl si tiene un equipo adecuado. Todo parece indicar que su trabajo está seguro (incluso más de lo que pensamos) así que es tiempo de esperar que se arreglen sus coordinadores.

Tell me what you think about "Cowboys en Español: Hablemos de los Coaches" in the comments below, or tweet me @MauNFL and let’s talk football! If you like football and are looking for a Dallas Cowboys show in Spanish, don’t miss my weekly Facebook Live! show, Primero Cowboys!



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Star Blog

2018 Draft Class Season Review: LB Leighton Vander Esch

Kevin Brady

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Leighton Vander Esch Lands on List of NFL's Top 10 Rookies

As the first round draft pick of America's Team, any player would be under a ton of pressure from all angles. Whether it's from the fans on the outside or the organization on the inside, the expectations around being a first round pick for the Cowboys are immense. But the pressure placed upon linebacker Leighton Vander Esch, from the second he was announced as the 19th overall draft pick, was second to none.

It felt like Cowboys Nation let out a collective groan when Vander Esch was taken, with fans hoping for a more glamorous first round selection. Someone like wide receiver Calvin Ridley or edge rusher Harold Landry would've done the trick, but after Vander Esch's rookie season it's hard to imagine either of those players would have had the impact Vander Esch did in 2018.

Though he didn't start a game until week 4, and didn't become the unquestioned full-time starting WILL until week 10, Vander Esch earned Pro Bowl honors for his rookie season. Tallying 140 total tackles and 2 interceptions, Vander Esch made his presence felt week in and week out.

No counting stats can fully measure Leighton Vander Esch's impact as a rookie, however.

Prior to the 2018 season, the Cowboys defensive success often came down to the health of Sean Lee. When available and playing at his best, Lee led an overachieving Cowboys defense to solid performances each week. But, when Lee went out (as he often did), the entire Cowboys defense seemed to fall apart.5 Studs and Duds From the Dallas Cowboys 2018 Season

This year, though, that all changed. When Sean Lee was out with injury the Cowboys defense got better. Vander Esch and Jaylon Smith became a versatile, hard hitting tandem the NFL immediately feared, and helped to direct the Cowboys defense to signature wins throughout the 2018 season.

There are arguments against taking any off-ball linebacker in the first round, as the value of the position has been questioned due to the new style of offense in the NFL. Nowadays linebackers are relegated to two-down players, taken off the field in favor of faster defensive backs on critical passing downs.

Leighton Vander Esch is athletic enough to be both an old school run stopper, but also a three down linebacker in today's fast paced NFL.

Despite the doubts which surrounded the pick, the Cowboys absolutely nailed their first round selection in 2018. And Leighton Vander Esch made Dallas' front office look like geniuses each and every Sunday.



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Star Blog

What Is The Cowboys Most Pressing Offseason Need?

Kevin Brady

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Can we Believe General Manager Jerry Jones?

Finishing their season with a Division Round loss, Dallas Cowboys fans are getting a somewhat late start on the 2019 offseason. Of course, we'd much rather a later start, but the results are what they are.

Now Dallas must get better, and re-tool before heading into Dak Prescott's fourth season, and the Cowboys' 2019 campaign. Though they didn't feel all that close to a championship this season, looking around the roster, it's actually tough to identify one key need the Cowboys must address.

They are filled with young, talented players that they have high hopes for across the board. And in the places they are "older," such as across the offensive line, they have established veterans who aren't going anywhere anytime soon.

So what is the Cowboys' most pressing offseason need?

Well, despite already using their 2019 first round pick to address it, the answer very well might be wide receiver.

Adding Amari Cooper midseason provided a massive jolt to the Cowboys previously anemic passing attack, but on his own he is not enough to take this passing game to where it needs to be to compete in this new NFL.

Third round pick Michael Gallup is going to be a very good pro, and progressed really well as his rookie season went on. I think he can play opposite Amari Cooper nicely, and be the number two option in the passing game going forward.

Though arguably their best wide out against man coverage, Cole Beasley is a free agent, and if the reports are true about Scott Linehan returning in 2019 it could very well mean Beasley will not be opting to sign back with Dallas.

Regardless of Beasley's decision, however, the Cowboys need to seriously evaluate their pass catchers heading into next season.

This is a passing league. The rules have dictated that you must be able to pass the ball efficiently if you want to compete with the best of the best around the NFL. To take the next step in their progression, and reach an NFC title game and/or Super Bowl, Dak Prescott will need to have as explosive a group of pass catchers as possible.

The Cowboys have already taken solid steps to making this a reality, but another move or two this offseason could go a long way to putting Dallas in the conversation with teams like the Rams and the Saints in 2019.



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