Just when I am reluctantly purchasing my ticket for the Keep-Wade Phillips-Around-Another-Year bandwagon, he reminds me why I hate myself for even thinking such a thing.
With the game still young, the offense moving the ball rather effectively, and the scoreboard clear of points, Ol’ Wade coached scared and stupid, sending in Sean Suisham to attempt a 48 yard field goal with the ball on the Vikings’ 31 yard line and only a yard shy of a crucial first down. Remember, this same Suisham is a former Cowboys’ castoff, a 2009 Redskins’ castoff, and a late-season addition to the team. He is not Mr. Clutch. Heck, I doubt whether he could even find the clutch in a standard-shift car.
Predictably, the oft-traveled, never-money kicker sent the ball wide of the upright and, consequently, sent Minnesota onto the field with excellent field position and a little wind in their sails.
On a day when you are playing against Brett Favre, Adrian Peterson, Sidney Rice, a disruptive defense, and one million (at least that is how it sounds in that tiny dome) rabid purple-bleeding fans, touchdowns are sure to be at a premium. Momentum and sustained drives are sure to be important elements of success.
At the moment Phillips sent the kicker out, I angrily changed my FaceBook status to, “Completely retarded decision by Phillips to kick a field goal. A fireable offense.”
I stand by that status.
Jerry Jones won’t make it official until tomorrow, but all indications are that he will pick up the option on Phillips’ contract for next season. Maybe that is the best available option. Even if it is, that doesn’t change the fact that the man remains a world-class underachiever who takes refuge in his successes and shirks all responsibility for his failure. If he ever said, “This one is on me,” after a loss, I am sure it would immediately bring on a nuclear winter or some other post-apocalyptic state.
The Cowboys will enter next season with a good team, a great defense (and thank you, Wade, for that), two good coordinators (counting the head coach, of course)…and Wade Phillips still trying to prove he can do more than put up impressive regular season numbers followed by a wilting postseason showing.
I am not saying the Cowboys win the game if Wade makes the proper call on that fourth and one. I am not even saying the Cowboys definitely get that yard. Recent history suggests maybe they don’t.
I am just saying that it is one more minute piece of evidence that some men are meant to be outstanding Sergeants, because they make little more than mediocre Generals.
I don't have a lot of credibility since I called for Wade's head and now find it very difficult to blame Jerry for picking up his option. That being said, I don't think going for a field goal is worthy of being fired. The kicker should make that kick. A 48 yarder is not a gimme, but certainly should be attempted in most situations especially that early in the game. You can make an argument that Wade trusted his defense more by going for the FG than by going for the 4th down. Don't get me wrong, I would love for Bill Cowher or a proven playoff winner to come in here, but the bottom line is that this team wasn't as good as Minnesota where it counts in the playoffs, that being our OLine vs their DLine. But this team did improve as the season went and many questions were answered satisfactorily. 1. Romo is not the problem. 2. The Defense has a bright future. 3. Miles Austin is a true #1 4. Felix should be the primary back from here on out. 5. Jenkins is the best cover corner on this team. 6. Placekickers are important 7. We can win in December 8. We can win a playoff game. 9. And Wade, if anything, can motivate his players.
Now, if this team digresses in anyway next year, then fire his ass.
"The kicker should make that kick." -Which kicker? The one you picked up off the garbage heap late season? The one who choked away a win in New Orleans and missed two against your own team? That one? It isn't kicking a field goal from the 31 that I find so offensive; it is the mentality behind THAT particular play at THAT particular moment.
I believe I said, reluctantly, in this article that at this point, keeping Wade another year may be the way to go. The window for firing him was wide open this time a year ago. Jerry would not do it then. I doubt he should do it now. May as well make a run at that home field Super Bowl.
"Now, if this team digresses in anyway next year, then fire his ass." What if it just doesn't progress? What if it just saves the absolute worst game of the season for the last game of the season? You know, the way they have done each year the wonder boy has been here. What if they just waste one more year of your football life, teasing you, making you dare to believe they have a chance, a legitimate shot, when in reality, they are bound for meltdown when it matters most?
And don't read me wrong. I don't give a fiddler's fart for Cowher and his football jaw. Let him keep boring the masses on the worst studio team ever assembled.
"Wade, if anything, can motivate his players." Sorry, I am still wiping tears over here. Thanks for that one. It took me out of my bad mood and gave me a good laugh. They are motivated to keep him because everyone loves the teacher who lets you throw spitballs and pants each other. No one wants the hardass for a boss, when they can have the candy ass.