Jerry Jones first pretended he didn’t hear the question about Jason Garrett’s future.
“What did you say? I really didn’t hear you. I really didn’t hear you. There’s a drill going on back over there,” Jones said, chuckling, before adding, “Next question.”
Like quarterback Dak Prescott and receiver Amari Cooper, the Cowboys coach is entering the final year of his contract. Unlike Prescott and Cooper, Garrett knows he will go into this season without a new deal.
The Cowboys have made it clear Garrett is coaching for his job.
Jones, though, also made it clear Friday, he wants a reason to give his long-time coach a new deal.
“There’s no secret that the guy to my right here, I want to be the head coach of the Dallas Cowboys for as long as I’m around to spell it,” Jones said, pointing to Garrett. “That would be my goal, and that’s no secret, and many of you have written about it in various ways. So let’s see what’s ahead.”
Rumors have persisted that the Cowboys would love to hire Sean Payton as their next head coach. A lot of things would have to happen for that to happen.
The Cowboys front office obviously has hopes for “advancing our place in the playoffs,” as Jones said. That would mean at least a trip to the NFC Championship Game for the first time since 1995, and that likely would make the Cowboys’ decision for them.
Executive Stephen Jones said he is convinced Garrett is the right head coach for the Cowboys now and the future. The addendum, though, is the Cowboys need to see the Cowboys “take the next step.”
“I think we’ve had some really solid football teams,” Stephen Jones said. “I’ve never seen this team not play hard for him, even in tough situations. When we didn’t have Zeke [Elliott] for six games a couple of seasons ago, and the season was tough. I’ve always seen his teams play hard for Jason all the way to the end, even when we knew in some cases we were out of it. The guys respond well to him. They play hard for him. We’ve got to take the next step. But I do feel really good that Jason is the right guy for this job.”