Dear Jerry Jones: please live forever

What’s the longest an NFL GM has lasted without winning a playoff game, anyway?

In case you missed it, the Green Bay Packers executed a miracle yesterday to get golf season started for the #1 seeded Dallas Cowboys.

In the 1995-6 season Troy Aikman led America’s Team® to a 27-17 win over the Pittsburgh Steelers in Super Bowl XXX. In the 21 seasons since that glorious day in Tempe, the Cowboys have:

  • gone 174-161 in the regular season…
  • for a 51.9 winning percentage, and
  • gone 0-9 in the playoffs
  • posting a losing or .500 record more than half the time

What could be the cause of this extended streak of futility? Well, let’s see. They’ve had six coaches, so it can’t be that. Obviously the entire roster roster has turned over several times, with yesterday’s starting QB Dak Prescott being the eighth preferred starting signal caller (depending on how you count years when Tony Romo and Aikman were hurt). So it can’t be that.

Hmmm. What do all these teams have in common?

Aha. It’s their owner, Jerry Jones. Who also, since he gets to make all the decisions, gets to be GM. (Ever work for someone who was right because they paid your salary and they by god said they were right? Fun stuff.)

Ask yourself: in this dog eat dog day of win or die, how many general managers can you imagine posting a record barely over .500 and not winning a playoff game and keeping their jobsFor over two decades?!

Look, I’m not complaining. I hate Dallas as bad as I do the Raiders and the Washington Racist Epithets (but not as bad as New England). So the coffin nail from CU Buff alum Mason Crosby was a moment of laughter and unbridled joy for me. I used to say I hope Al Davis lives forever, because the game had passed him by (like, years ago) but he wouldn’t hand over the reins to someone who understood the modern game. His public utterances were pure gold, as were the looks of bafflement on the pundits’ faces every draft day as Raider picks were announced (“Who? Can you say that name again?” Pause. Flip through pages of draft notes. “Can you spell that?”).

oakland raiders mark-davisThanks to a diet of virgin blood, daily injections of embalming fluid and a rigorous regimen of ritual necromancy, Al held on for 82 years. And you may have noticed that the team is a lot better these days with his son Mark in charge (yeah, I don’t know why SNL hasn’t gone after his haircut, either).

Of course, the difference between Al and Jerry is that once upon a time Davis actually did know something about football. He had accomplishments that had nothing to do with Jimmy Johnson.

With luck, Jerry will live to be 182. And he’ll hang onto absolute control the whole time.

Here’s to you, boss. If anybody points to your record and says you ought to fire your GM, you fire them. Meantime, you enjoy the rest of the playoffs. On the couch. With the rest of us.

 

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