Jerry Jones on an 18 Game Schedule: “The more the pie grows, the players get the majority of the money when the pie grows.”
Last season the Dallas Cowboys finally cleared a huge hurdle and won a playoff game. It was a huge step for Tony Romo and the Dallas Cowboys and they are hoping to build on that momentum. Before training camp and the preseason started, the Cowboys were considered the favorites to win the brutally tough NFC East and were one of the favorites to represent the NFC in the Super Bowl.However, the preseason hasn’t gone as expected for Dallas. Dez Bryant injured himself right as training camp opened up and this preseason has been a huge struggle for the offense.
Preseason struggles are not always carried over to the regular season and I certainly don’t think it is panic time in Big D. The Cowboys still have one of the most explosive offenses in the NFL led by Tony Romo and they still have the ability to get after the quarterback defensively. But if they are going to exceed expectations and take advantage of the Super Bowl being on their turf, they are going to have to put the horrible preseason in the back of their minds and make a statement week one against one of their NFC East rivals.Jerry Jones joined KRLD in Dallas with Jagger and Barsky to talk about how concerned he is about the struggles of the Cowboys in the preseason, how much preseason means in terms of the regular season, how concerned he is about the offensive line and the injuries they are dealing with, whether or not Dez Bryant will be back for their next preseason game, and what he thinks about the NFL possible going to an 18 game schedule.
On the questions about the team’s struggles in the preseason:
“I think I understand those questions and you always like to move the ball and move the chains even if you’re throwing the ball against air. The good news is we’ve got almost two weeks in reality, its according to how we want to count Thursday night, but we’ve got two weeks to work on any of the kinds of things that stopped us the other night and we will work on those. Those are the kinds of things you do in preseason, but I expect us to work on the mistake side of it. Some of the things we didn’t pick up in the offensive line early that sacked Romo. Those are things that aren’t unique to game planning. You just had a couple of mistakes that the guys are going to have to pick up and they’re something they pick up every day and have for years. It’s a combination of things and we’ve got two weeks to work on it and that’s the way it works. What you gotta remember is if a team does not really prepare and game plan and a player doesn’t prepare and game plan, he doesn’t play well in the game. I do give some credit, it’s not an excuse, but I do give some credit to the fact that we’ve gone in playing vanilla on both sides of the ball and should do better when we prepare for the team that we’re playing.”
On whether or not Marc Colombo will be back by the first game of the regular season and how concerned he is with the struggles of the offensive line:
“Well he could be back, but no one knows. It’s looking good that he’s back and when he does he ought to be in better shape. That was a very positive surgery that he had to remove those things out of his knees. He should be back and then I look for (Kyle) Kosier to be back. The real good news is (Montrae) Holland really played real well against San Diego. He probably took a step back against Houston, but still Holland has shown us he is everything we want to be. (Alex) Barron in particular has shown us that he is ready to play. In Holland and Barron, Holland at guard and Barron at tackle, either tackle, we really have as good of depth as we have had. So with a healthy Kosier and a healthy Colombo, which we hope to have him back for the first game, I really like the depth we have established with veteran players. We’ve gotten something accomplished in camp there.”
On whether or not Dez Bryant will play in the next preseason game:
“You wouldn’t want to see him if you don’t have your first groups out there. For sure you wouldn’t want to see him if you don’t do that. You really could have somebody take a shot or two that normally might be a little different because what you’re gonna have out there is a lot of players that are trying to give their last ditch effort to make the 53 man roster and that might be a little more than you go for. We can be satisfied I think and it be enough if he has a good week of practice as far as going into Washington.”
On the idea of an 18 game regular season schedule:
“Ok well I didn’t go to that owners meeting. Stephen Jones went to the owners meeting. I stayed back in California and stayed at the practices but I am very much for the 18 game. But I do want it to be decided inclusive of players input and that’s as it should be. We actually have in the Collective Bargaining Agreement the ability to take it to 22 games. That’s already in the agreement. That’s not the spirit of it. You want players to be buying into it. Certainly it has the chance of enhancing the player’s financial benefits because it does grow the pie. The more the pie grows, the players get the majority of the money when the pie grows. The players get the money – so that’s a good thing. I think the nature of how you would prepare for those 18 games would have less physical impact than we have now. When you only play two preseason games there are things that you don’t do. Mainly has to do with the length of a preseason and the wear and tear in terms of how your body gets tired. The more you get tired, the more you’re susceptible of injuries of all kind. I think all of that is a plus factor on health. At the end of the day I think we will be going to 18 games, but certainly with the positive input of players.”
Listen to Jerry Jones on KRLD in Dallas here