There may not be anyone who is more vocal and passionate about the Dallas Cowboys than Hall of Famer Michael Irvin who spent his entire 12-year career with the organization and won three Super Bowls. So, when the Cowboys suffered a devastating loss at home in the wild-card round to the San Francisco 49ers after a 12 win season, he wasn't going to bite his tongue.
Cowboys' Head Coach Mike McCarthy has been heavily scrutinized for the team's underwhelming performance in the playoffs to the point that many want the organization to move in a different direction after just two seasons under his leadership. However, when Irvin was asked if Cowboys' owner Jerry Jones, who has been vocal about his disappointment on how the season ended, is angry enough to move on for McCarthy, he was quick to dispel that notion.
“There’s no doubt in my mind, with all the things that — and it’s not just him being furious with Mike McCarthy and the disappointing end to the season, it’s also what he should be doing,” Irvin said on 105.3 The Fan on Thursday. “His job is to evaluate and see if there’s any way we can get better. So, that’s why I said and I’ve been saying on the air… No! Unless I’m sure I can bring in something better — a Sean Payton or Bill Belichick or Kyle Shanahan or Mike Tomlin. But, we get emotional. We get emotional and we want someone out. We’re not thinking about the other side of it. Who are we bringing in? …”
After such a promising regular season for the Cowboys ended without a single playoff win, it's natural for the media and fans to look at who was the most to blame for their letdown. The aforementioned McCarthy and Offensive Coordinator Kellen Moore have received the most vitriol for the effort the Cowboys put forth against the 49ers, but Irvin placed the responsibility on the guys that step on the field and play.
“Dude. Emmitt [Smith] and I stood in that tunnel before every game. We looked at each other. We called ourselves ‘double trouble.’ By land or by air. And we said before we hit the field, if we don’t show up, we got no shot. Period,” Irvin said. “That’s the whole reason we did that. Because we knew if we didn’t show up, we got no shot. [Against the 49ers, the Cowboys’] stars didn’t show up. We had no shot. Wherever you’ve got disorder, you’ve got disfunction. We can’t have our stars putting up role-player numbers like 31 yards rushing, or one catch for 21 yards, or a 69 passer rating. … Trying to make our role players stars and our stars role players, that’s a disorder and the team dysfunction’d. …”
The bottom line is that the Cowboys, once again, fell incredibly short of what the expectations were for them, and it's become a too familiar theme of how their seasons have gone for quite some time. The glitz and glamour that come along with playing for the Cowboys are nice for headlines, but this organization has won five Super Bowls and it's time for them to perform on a high level in the postseason and get back to bringing Lombardi trophies home.