Past employment with the Cowboys counts with competitive loyalist Jerry Jones, and the overlord of the Dallas franchise took notice when two of his former offensive coaches, Norv Turner and Chan Gailey, became available on Monday.
Head coach Jason Garrett, who played for Turner as a member of the Cowboys, might not get a deciding vote when it comes time for Jones to make the changes he promises are coming, which could include pulling Garrett's play-calling responsibilities. Turner and Gailey are both considered strong play-callers and Turner in particular is praised for his tutoring of quarterbacks.
Jones that told his team to enter the 2012 season with a sense of urgency to make the playoffs and make a run to the Super Bowl for the first time since 1995.
Jones understands the Cowboys had lots of injuries and had to endure the tragic death of linebacker Jerry Brown. But the bottom line is the bottom line and the Cowboys didn't get it done and now Jones is focused on changing the culture at the team's Valley Ranch headquarters to get the desired results he is looking for.
"I can tell you change is necessary at 8-8," Jones said. "We're going to have changes."
Jones is not firing the general manager, as he and the owner are one and the same.
And he is not getting rid of quarterback Tony Romo, despite his penchant for playing bad in big games and inability to get it done when it matters most.
Jones can do nothing with Romo because he has no alternatives and he doesn't want to go back to the days of Quincy Carter, Vinny Testaverde, Drew Bledsoe, Anthony Wright, Clint Stoerner, Ryan Leaf, Drew Henson and Chad Hutchinson - a litany of bad to middling quarterbacks that bridged the gap between Troy Aikman and Romo.
"I don't like what's on the other side of that page," Jones said. "We've got better chances to get to the Super Bowl relative to Tony Romo."
Jones said his focus is upgrading the talent, personnel and possibly the coaching around Romo.
That puts the target squarely on the back of head coach Jason Garrett or at least his title of offensive coordinator and definitely defensive coordinator Rob Ryan.
Romo and Garrett have spent six years together and while they have put up record-setting numbers, the end result is not satisfactory. Romo threw a career-high 19 interceptions and was sacked a career-high 36 times. The Cowboys played with a lead just 23 percent of the time. Only the Raiders and Chiefs were worse.
"We've got to have a way to play football that maximizes what Tony does the best," Jones said. "I can assure our fans this, that it's going to be very uncomfortable, from my standpoint, for the next few weeks and months at Valley Ranch."
Jones refused to divulge what changes he was talking about making but said changes were coming and wouldn't answer questions regarding the future of Garrett as the play-caller or Ryan as the defensive coordinator.
The only thing he knows for sure right now is that Romo is not going anywhere and is regarded as an asset, not the problem.
"The real issue is we have Tony Romo, and we have a quarterback that I have all the confidence in the world in him, and our team needs to use his experience, use what he does the best," Jones said. "We need to use that. We need to do things offensively that maximize that. That's what the team that we played Sunday did. They used their personnel, those two guys, that quarterback and that running back, who were playing in college this time last year."
Jones plans to meet advisors outside the organization to help make the right decisions on how to proceed.
"I'm going to spend a lot of time visiting with people outside of the organization that I have a lot of confidence in that will help us evaluate how to do the things that I know what our fans want to do, and that's not be sitting here at .500," Jones said. "There are a lot of teams that haven't been at .500, but nobody hasn't been at .500 and spent as much cash as I'm spending."