Phillips has spent the last few years building up the San Diego defense. Phillips, as a defensive coordinator, is quite good. He built great defenses in Buffalo and in San Diego. However, as an NFL head coach, Phillips has been less than stellar. His overall record is 48-42, and he's 0-3 in the playoffs. He was the head coach of the Buffalo Bills (promoted from DC to head coach after Marv Levy retired from coaching) during the Music City Miracle playoff game against Tennessee.
Phillips was chosen after an intensive 3 week search by Jones to replace Bill Parcells. Jones interviewed minority candidates like Indianapolis QB coach and assistant head coach Jim Caldwell, Chicago DC Ron Rivera, and 49ers assistant head coach Mike Singletary. All these men are accomplished assistants with impressive resumes.
All lost out to Wade friggin' Phillips, a white man with a less-than-stellar head coaching resume.
Make no mistake, Phillips was hired because he is white and a Texan. Phillips was also hired because of his accomplishments as an assistant. My question is this: what did Phillips accomplish as an assistant that guys like Caldwell and Rivera didn't? Phillips was certainly not hired for his head coaching experience. If he was, Jerry Jones is an even bigger idiot than I thought. "Head coaching experience" means absolutely nothing in the NFL. Former Dallas assistant Sean Payton had no head coaching experience, on any level, prior to getting the New Orleans job last year. Payton was Coach of the Year in 2006, leading a demoralized Saints team all the way to the NFC Championship game.
I am not the only one irked by Jones' hiring of a fat, white guy over more accomplished and more deserving minority candidates:
Why was this done? Is Jones, inherently, a racist? Maybe he is. Before you freak out and call me names, think about it for a second. I cannot recall a single black coach of any significance coming out of Dallas during the Jones era. The only coaches Jones seems to hire are white guys: Jimmy Johnson, Barry Switzer, Chan Gailey, Dave Campo, Bill Parcells, and now Phillips. Four of those six are white, southern dudes that seem to fit Jones and his mentality. Most of the top assistants in Cowboys land are white guys. Go back through their recent history: Norv Turner, Dave Wannstedt, Ernie Zampese, and Mike Zimmer. All white dudes. Heck, even the new guy Jones is "grooming" for a head coaching job (former-Cowboys QB Jason Garrett) is as white as an albino soaking in bleach.
I am not advocating for Jones or any other owner to simply hire black or Hispanic coaches solely because they are minorities. I am advocating that owners like Jones join the 21st century! Jones is a high profile owner, and if he had made a minority hiring, it would have been a real statement both from a social standpoint and from a football standpoint. There is nothing, absolutely nothing that Wade Phillips brings to the table over guys like Caldwell or Rivera. Ron Rivera re-built the Bears defense, transforming it from a laughing stock into a feared unit, minus key players like Tommie Harris and Mike Brown. Jim Caldwell's impact on Peyton Manning is enormous. Before Caldwell, Peyton Manning averaged 17 interceptions a season and was 0-2 in the playoffs. Since Caldwell arrived, all Manning has done is average only 10 INTs a season, break Dan Marino's single-season TD record, break Steve Young's single-season QB rating record, won 2 league MVPs, won Super Bowl XLI, and won Super Bowl MVP.
Knowing that, can you tell me, with a straight face, that Wade Phillips is a better head coaching candidate over Rivera and Caldwell? No, you can't. Jerry Jones is a prime example of why I really feel many NFL owners are just dumb, hillbilly hicks with little or no knowledge of how to really run a football program. Yes, I know Jones has 3 rings.
Different league, different decade, different everything. Back then, a trade like the Herschel Walker trade was possible, and Jones could essentially out spend other teams to build his dynasty. He can't do that anymore. The Cowboys have not won a playoff game in over ten years. They have only been to the playoffs 3 times in that span. Two of those appearances happened during Parcells' tenure, and Parcells is a Hall of Fame lock. Part of the reason this is so is because Jones has failed to find quality coaches and give them a chance. He could have given someone like Lovie Smith (a Texas native) a chance in 2002, or made a run at Marvin Lewis, Tony Dungy, or been creative and tried to pull a coach from the assistant ranks: Mike Tomlin, Leslie Frazier, or Gene Huey. These are accomplished men with great track records who would jump at the chance to coach the great Dallas Cowboys.
Instead, Jones retreads the same old white trash. And no, I personally do not think Jerry Jones is a racist. He's not throwing around the "N" word left and right, and spitting on black people on his way to church. I do think he is short-sighted and stupid. Actions define who you are. Actions shape perception, and right now Jerry Jones is not looking racially sensitive or open-minded. The best thing for the Cowboys and their passionate fans is for Jones to just go away. They need a fresh perspective in Dallas, not the same old recycled junk.