I know I promised a draft preview this week, but an opportunity presented itself to address an issue that has baffled us Cowboys fans for weeks. With the draft still more than a week away, we still have time to look at areas that the team must address in the draft. So let’s delve into the mysteriously short-lived tenure of one Dan Reeves as Consultant with the Dallas Cowboys.
Many Cowboys fans – me included – were excited at the prospect of Dan Reeves coming into Valley Ranch to serve the team in a role only known to us outsiders as “Consultant”. The presence of an old-school guy such as Reeves would certainly have turned around the “loosey goosey” attitude that had seemingly begun to run rampant throughout the locker room, and perhaps the entire organization. He would have helped Jason Garrett learn the art of halftime adjustments. He would have helped Tony Romo see that he’s being an idiot. He would have helped Wade realize that he’s being too soft and that a little discipline would be in order. He would have helped come draft day. He would have even brought back the old guard – the old Tom Landry holdouts that are still bitter about the way he was fired.
The news that Reeves had already taken up office at Valley Ranch was viewed as very welcomed news around Dallas. He didn’t even have a contract in hand, yet he was already hard at work, trying to turn the Cowboys into a legitimate Super Bowl contender. It was said that he was already meeting with coaches – particularly Jason Garrett and the offensive staff. Optimism began to soar among Cowboys faithful.
Then, as suddenly as it had begun, Dan Reeves’ tenure with the Dallas Cowboys was over. Confusion ran rampant as the Dallas media scrambled for answers. News began to leak out that a clause had been added by Jerry into Reeves’ contract that became a deal breaker. Conflicting rumors began to surface that Reeves’ departure was due to a potential power struggle with GM Jerry. More rumors began to fly as little news of consequence was known. It all came to a head when Jerry, himself, called into Randy Galloway’s afternoon radio show on 103.3 ESPN. At this time, Jerry issued the company line: Dan Reeves was not going to be a member of the staff due to a clause in his contract that outlined a time commitment. This clause, as it turns out, was not in the initial contract and was not agreed upon by Reeves.
And that was that. Jerry and Dan couldn’t find a compromise and decided to part ways. A faithful fandom reeled as their potential savior simply made an appearance. Finally, in an article written by Ray Buck of the Fort Worth Star-Telegram, we get some details as to what happened. As it turns out, Jerry’s requirement was that Reeves match or exceed the amount of hours that Head Coach Wade Phillips would work. Seems simple enough, but why is a consultant who is not responsible for day-to-day club operations required to work as many hours as the head coach?
The thought of Dan Reeves and Wade Phillips punching a clock so that Jerry can audit their hours is a bit silly. The thought of Jerry voiding Reeves’ contract because he fell 10 minutes shy of Phillips’ hours for the pay period is altogether ridiculous and disturbing. What kind of control freak has Jerry become that he has to make such outrageous demands? Why must he continue to put himself ahead of the team? This isn’t just an issue with GM Jerry. This is an issue with Owner Jerry, as well. Something like this cannot be allowed to happen. This is the type of thing that can turn a championship-caliber team into a mediocrity. It’s the type of thing that can turn off a fan base. It’s the type of incident that must stop. It’s the type of incident that reminds us, Jerry Jones must go.
Now that all is said and done, one is left to ponder how things would be if Jerry hadn’t required Reeves to keep a time sheet. Judging from Reeves’ comments in the aforementioned article, it sounds like it would have been a net positive. But now when we get the inside view of the Cowboys’ War Room come draft day, we will all be scouring the images, searching for the elusive Dan-o with his red and white-striped tie.. Is he standing behind Jerry, tugging on his skin? No. Is he towering over a shivering and dumbfounded Wade Phillips? No. Wait is that him slapping Tony Romo around? Ye…no, it’s not him. Is that him drawing up plays with Jason Witten? No, that’s Jason Garret. Dang it, where’s Dan-o?!