Archive: Jerry Jones Should Turn To Aikman For General Manager
(Amidst a dismal 2001 season that had the Dallas Cowboys overloaded with both starting quarterbacks and lopsided defeats, Randy Galloway offers a humorous solution to the franchise’s most noticeable front-office problem.)
From the November 15, 2001 edition of The Fort Worth Star-Telegram
by Randy Galloway
Always focused. Always thinking ahead. Thinking of April, and the next NFL Draft. The prognosis, however, is rather dire for the Valley Ranch brain trust. Current projections indicate Mr. Jerry Jones will have to be good at evaluating talent, as opposed to just being lucky.
This is scary. History tells us to expect massive screw-ups. At the moment, only the Taliban has surpassed Jerry in war room miscalculations.
So, in a never-ending rescue-mission to protect Jones from himself, while also saving the Cowboys, the timing seems right to proceed with Plan A.
Maybe you’ve noticed. Plan B, C, D, E, F, etc., none of them worked. Plus, things are also not necessarily falling into place on the field, which has nothing to do with the Cowboys’ halfway point record of 2-6.
This season wasn’t important anyway. Except, that is, for one area. This season was supposed to set the table for next April. Supposed to guarantee draft-day opportunities that haven’t been available at Valley Ranch in more than a decade.
The problem is not the Cowboys. The problem is the rest of the NFL. The league is so bad the Cowboys might not even be the worst team. Six clubs have two or fewer victories. Four more have only three victories. With expansion Houston holding the No. 1 pick in April, the Cowboys might not even crack the top five in drafting position.
It is certainly not too early to remind Jerry – again – that he needs help. He needs a football guy to call his very own. As Jerry has told us before, if he actually felt there was somebody out there who knew more about evaluating hairy-legged talent than his own self, then he’d hire him.
Which brings me to Plan A. Here’s the deal, Jerry:
About an hour before kickoff Sunday, walk into the Fox TV broadcasting booth at Texas Stadium, say hello to Moose Johnston, and then ask Moose’s microphone partner to step outside for a private conversation.
Then you do it, Jerry. You hand him a contract, along with a ballpoint pen and then request him to sign on the dotted line.
Sir, you have just hired yourself a new general manager.
This is perfecto. Well, except for a couple of obvious problems.
Aikman doesn’t want the job. And Jerry loves Jerry being the GM.
But just guessing, I’d say if Jones asked Aikman, then Troy could be convinced. And if there is anyone in football Jerry would ask, it’s Aikman.
This reunion needs to happen, and happen quickly. Nobody from the outside, no matter his credentials, would ever be invited by Jones to come to Valley Ranch and share the top football spot. And Aikman is the only one from the football family whom Jones would even consider.
The two had a recent spat in the tunnel at Texas Stadium, but that passed quickly, even after Aikman had yelled in anger at Jerry.
Troy, what are your qualifications for this job?
“I yelled at Jerry and he forgave me.”
OK, good enough. You’re hired.
Just what the Cowboys need. Somebody who can scream at Jerry, can tell him he’s wrong, can tell him he’s about to become the only man in football to screw up two pro teams at the same time – NFL and Arena League.
Jones listens to no one. But if he’s ever going to become agreeable to lending an ear to another voice, then the voice belongs to Aikman. The respect factor is there. In fact, Jerry’s respect for Aikman is about the only thing that can compare to Jerry’s self-evaluation of himself when it comes to football wisdom.
Aikman, however, always seems puzzled when he’s told he has Jerry’s ear. Maybe that’s because Jones hired Barry Switzer, not exactly an Aikman recommendation. Nor was Chan Gailey, only because Gailey was bringing in a new offense, which Aikman disagreed with.
But, of course, Jerry is smarter and more mature now, right? Which makes him more willing to listen, don’t you think? OK, that’s a definite stretch, but again, Aikman is the only hope when it comes to someone who could provide Jerry with football info, and the info having a chance of being heard and followed.
First, however, Aikman’s track-record in the draft, while limited, will have to be excused. He gave the recommendation on picking tight end David LaFleur. One bust is on Troy’s resume’. But with Jerry, we’ve lost count on busts.
April is coming faster than you think. It will be the most critical draft since the Jimster left town. Speaking of the Jimster, if Jerry hires Aikman as GM, maybe Troy can talk Johnson into letting Jones join them in doing TV commercials.
Jerry, you are gonna need plenty of help in this next draft. Amaze us all by going to Plan A, as in Aikman.