Former NFL head coach and current FOX and NFL Network analyst Brian Billick agrees with fellow former NFL head coach and FOX and NFL Network analyst Jim Mora: The first thing Dallas Cowboys interim head coach Jason Garrett can do to change the culture on the team is to cut cornerback Mike Jenkins.
Billick comments, made on ESPN Radio and passed along via ESPN NFL insider Adam Schefter’s Twitter feed, do not come as a surprise.
Like Mora, Billick’s perspective is that of a head coach, and any football coach at any level would take issue with Jenkins’ lack of effort on a play that resulted in a Green Bay Packers touchdown in the third quarter of Sunday night’s 45-7 drubbing, which less than 24 hours later cost Wade Phillips his job.
“To me, this is high treason,” Mora told Billick on Monday’s edition of “The Coach’s Show” on the NFL Network. “An NFL football player does not turn down a play like that. And if I’m Jason Garrett, the first thing that I’m doing when I take over as the head coach of this team, is I’m getting guys like that — number 21, who absolutely committed treason, let his team down by passing up a tackle and let the ball get in the end zone — I’m taking him and I’m getting him out of my locker room.”
Jenkins responded to Mora’s comment on Wednesday, saying that he was “not worried about a Jim Mora. The only person I’m worried about right now is Jason Garrett. Jim Mora is not my coach.”
Of course, it needs to be mentioned that, as long as owner Jerry Jones remains the general manager, no head coach will have final authority on the 53-man roster in Dallas. This is why all the talk about Bill Cowher going to Dallas is laughable.
Furthermore, Jenkins is a recent first-round pick (2008) who went to the Pro Bowl in 2009. Jenkins hasn’t played at a Pro Bowl level this season, but he has talent, and cutting him would just be giving him a one-way ticket to the Buffalo, Carolina, or one of the four 2-6 teams that certainly would leap at the chance to claim what remains of his five-year, $9.725 million rookie contract.
What Garrett should do is not give Jenkins a jersey on Sunday afternoon against the New York Giants.