It’s easy to forget that even tough the Dallas Cowboys clearly benefited from being in the NFL’s worst division, they were still one game away from making the playoffs and may have even punched in a ticket had Tony Romo not suffered a severe back injury (that he somehow played and succeed through in the previous week, leading a terrific game-winning TD drive in the process). The Cowboys still have massive holes on defense and were unable to truly upgrade their team due to cap issues, but they do deserve credit for adding top-notch defensive tackle Henry Melton to replace (and actually upgrade) Jason Hatcher, who signed a lucrative deal with the Washington Redskins. They might only finish third in the division due to the gains the Philadelphia Eagles and New York Giants have made, but it’s not like the Cowboys need to blow things up, right?
Somebody asked Cowboys czar (he’s more than just a mere, mortal “owner”) Jerry Jones if the team should rebuild, and his response was unsurprisingly akin to saying “hogwash”. Per Cowboys beat writer Nick Eatman, “Not at all. You don’t rebuild with Romo. We didn’t bring Linehan in to rebuild.”
I agree with Jones, and I think the notion that you rebuild in the NFL is a false one. Unlike in the NBA when you need to blow up a team and start over, all you need to do to get better in the NFL is to retool. As we have seen, improvements and turn-arounds are caused by better, smarter leadership and decisions in the offseason. But if the Cowboys want to get better, then Jones will need to take a serious- not rehearsed and insincere- look at the man in the mirror and do a much better job of managing the cap and assessing his team’s offseason strategy- that goes for everyone else in the building.
The Cowboys have a big-money, franchise quarterback in Tony Romo who regularly puts the team on his back, and it’s time for the front office to hold up its end of the bargain by making better financial decisions and actually building a competent defense.