Jason Garrett made all the right moves this 12-4 Dallas Cowboys season, from changing the culture to pushing for the first-round draft selection of Pro Bowl guard Zack Martin to balancing out the offense with league-leading rusher DeMarco Murray easing pressure on quarterback Tony Romo.
On Tuesday, Cowboys owner Jerry Jones did the right thing when he rewarded Garrett with a five-year, $30-million extension, a move followed with a three-year extension for defensive coordinator Rod Marinelli, a person familiar with the moves told USA TODAY Sports.
That person requested anonymity since the club has yet to announce the extensions.
It was Garrett who pushed for the hirings of Marinelli and offensive play caller Scott LInehan, coordinators who fit his balanced vision for the Cowboys, who won the NFC East and returned to the playoffs for the first time since 2009. The Cowboys defeated the Detroit Lions in the wild-card round before taking the Green Bay Packers to the wire in a 26-21 loss in the divisional round.
Though the Cowboys fell short of reaching their Super Bowl goal, Garrett has the unanimous support of his locker room. Star receiver Dez Bryant told USA TODAY Sports after the Cowboys’ win against the Washington Redskins in their regular-season finale that Garrett deserved Coach of the Year consideration for the dramatic turnaround he orchestrated by getting players to rally around each other after entering this season coaching for his future coming off three straight 8-8 seasons.
The former Cowboys backup quarterback, 48, is 42-32 since replacing the fired Wade Phillips as interim head coach on Nov. 8, 2010.
After three straight 8-8 seasons, Garrett is a leading reason why the Cowboys are back where they hoped as a legitimate Super Bowl contender.
Up next, they hope to get Bryant and Murray signed to long-term deals.
SOURCE: Jim Corbett