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Jason Garrett says the Cowboys have plenty of leaders

Jason Garrett AP

Cowboys defensive end Jason Hatcher recently bemoaned the absence of a team leader.  Cowboys coach Jason Garrett disagreed with Hatcher’s opinion during Garrett’s media availability at the Scouting Combine in Indianapolis.

“I don’t want to comment too much on what Hatch said but we certainly have very good leadership on our team,” Garrett said.  “I don’t want to go into the names of the guys but you know them.  They set the pace for our football team and guys we wouldn’t trade for anybody. . . .  [T]he more of those kinds of guys that you have on your team, guys who get invested in what you’re doing, are willing to be the right example for their teammates, are willing to be the right example for everybody in the organization and make sure they hold everybody accountable to that standard, that’s a good thing. We have a lot of them now and we want more, just like every team in the league does.”

Garrett said that leadership within the Cowboys comes in various forms.

“We believe leadership is important throughout the organization in football and outside of football,” Garrett said. “That comes from ownership, administration, from coaches and the best teams I’ve been on, it comes from players.  We have a really good band of players, experienced veteran players, who’ve been very good leaders for us over the past number of years.  You can’t get enough of them.  We want more of them.  We want young guys to be leaders.
We want middle-range guys to be leaders.  We want our more veteran players to be leaders, so that’s always a criteria when we’re evaluating players, draftable players or players we might acquire in free agency:  What’s their makeup, what can they bring to the football team, are they leaders.  And as you know there’s so any different styles of leadership.  There are guys who are more vocal guys, guys that lead by example, guys that pat a guy on the back, guys that wring guys by the neck.  That’s the way it is and the way it’s always been.  Again the best team’s I’ve been
on had a variety of styles of leadership from the payers. . . .  We have a lot of that now.  We always want more.  I think if you ask any coach in the league they want more leadership from their players as well. So that’s always a part of our process.”

That’s a lot of words.  But the fact remains that the Cowboys don’t have a jump-off-the-page leader.  They just don’t.  It’s not Tony Romo or anyone on offense, and it’s not anyone on defense.

That’s why Hatcher said what he said.  The Cowboys’ players apparently want someone who will command the locker room, and they currently don’t have that.  They may have a smattering of second-level leaders, but that’s not what they need in order to get back to the playoffs and, eventually, the Super Bowl.

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29 Responses to “Jason Garrett says the Cowboys have plenty of leaders”
  1. cowboyfan45 says: Feb 25, 2012 3:35 PM

    So the puppet head coach Jason Garrett says there’s plenty of leaders…..problem is their names are Jerry Jones!!!

  2. gator2006 says: Feb 25, 2012 3:40 PM

    You should be able to name the name of a leader. It’s not calling them out in a bad way. Maybe publicly recognizing a leader would help reinforce the player’s mindset.

  3. bootguy says: Feb 25, 2012 3:41 PM

    You don’t want to ” go into names ” , because there AREN’T ANY , Jason ! That’s why every yeard for the last 16 when everything’s on the line the ‘Boys go belly up like a dead carp in a stagnant pond !!

  4. thejuddstir says: Feb 25, 2012 3:42 PM

    Interesting, the players say they have no leaders, headcoach claims they have plenty of leaders and soon Jerrah will let us know that HE is the sole leader. As for Garrett’s comment, “They set the pace for our football team and guys we wouldn’t trade for anybody. . . . “, it reminds me of someone named Rex and the da’ boys are getting the same results as someone named Rex.

  5. thashark316 says: Feb 25, 2012 3:42 PM

    In Garrett’s quotes…how many names did you see, class? NONE.

  6. fissels says: Feb 25, 2012 3:46 PM

    I think Garrett may be right but Hatcher is also right in that there is a need for the “quiet leaders” to step forward and make guys accountable.

  7. cowboysallday says: Feb 25, 2012 3:48 PM

    Sean lee step up

  8. bobhk says: Feb 25, 2012 3:55 PM

    If leadership is a non-issue for the cowboys why does the issue keep coming up?
    After all you don’t hear that pop up guys like Brees, Rodgers, etc.

    One thing that is ironic: Garrett has been around leadership to know the difference. He was on the same team as Aikman and Smith.

  9. downsouth49er says: Feb 25, 2012 4:19 PM

    And those leaders lead them right back home after yet another choked season.

  10. deucedavenport says: Feb 25, 2012 4:32 PM

    Having “leaders” is not the problem here. Success had a lot to do with these misconceptions. Eli is probably called a leader, even though he may not be the most vocal or demonstrative guy. The fact that he steps up in the clutch is why he’s become just that. If all of a sudden, the Cowboys were able to put a run together like the G-Men this past year, all of a sudden people say Romo has become a leader. Get some more skill on D and O-line and win some games when it matters, then no one will talk about leadership.

  11. billymc75 says: Feb 25, 2012 4:36 PM

    Yea cause Rodgers is so vocal, or maybe a vocal leader like Phillip Rivers who hasn’t won squat, or the whole vocal leader thing is over blown..Bart Scott(Squat), vocal leadership didn’t help the Ravens take a win that was handed to them, Aikman lead on the field he wasn’t vocal players knew what he wanted. Like I said overblown.

  12. bobhk says: Feb 25, 2012 4:50 PM

    deucedavenport says:
    If all of a sudden, the Cowboys were able to put a run together like the G-Men this past year, all of a sudden people say Romo has become a leader.
    ————–
    @deucedavenport
    Leadership is not by accident. You don’t suddenly become a leader. It’s developed.

    Leadership is not just being vocal. It’s leading by example of excellence and demanding standards from others and holding others accountable. Its coming through in clutch. Cowboys Dec record in the last 5 years show that there’s no leader there.
    Please don’t play the talent card. Cowboys dec record is 8-12 over the last 5 years. They’ve had well above average talent.

  13. wolfepup says: Feb 25, 2012 4:50 PM

    Every team has leaders. It’s called the coaches. That’s what their paid to do. Players play, coaches coach and or lead.

  14. deucedavenport says: Feb 25, 2012 5:13 PM

    @bobhk: Please don’t play the talent card. Cowboys dec record is 8-12 over the last 5 years. They’ve had well above average talent.
    ——
    Did you actually watch any of their games last year? Did you see how bad their defense was, especially late in games? It came down to lack of talent and execution, and had nothing to do with leadership. People, especially the media, love to make it out to more than it really is. Bad teams have leaders…look at London Fletcher on the Skins. The Bears with Urlacher. Unquestionable leaders if you ask any of their teammates. Didn’t get them anywhere last year, now did it?

  15. nygsbchamps4 says: Feb 25, 2012 5:16 PM

    You can have as many leaders as you want but if you don’t have enough talent you’re never going to win big.

  16. bigblueapple says: Feb 25, 2012 5:18 PM

    NEWS FLASH: Garette is also bad at gauging leadership ability.

    Safe to say after he’s done being Jones’ gimp he well never be anything more than a position coach somewhere else.

  17. goforthanddie says: Feb 25, 2012 5:33 PM

    The only leader they have is JJ. They’d be better off with NO leaders.

  18. bobhk says: Feb 25, 2012 5:54 PM

    deucedavenport says:
    Feb 25, 2012 5:13 PM
    @bobhk: Please don’t play the talent card. Cowboys dec record is 8-12 over the last 5 years. They’ve had well above average talent.
    ——
    Did you actually watch any of their games last year? Did you see how bad their defense was, especially late in games? It came down to lack of talent and execution, and had nothing to do with leadership. People, especially the media, love to make it out to more than it really is. Bad teams have leaders…look at London Fletcher on the Skins. The Bears with Urlacher. Unquestionable leaders if you ask any of their teammates. Didn’t get them anywhere last year, now did it?
    ———-
    Sure there are leaders on bad teams and it does not get them far.
    Are you seriously comparing Cowboys talent to the skins? Bears would have made it except they lost their starting QB.

    Bad team with leadership don’t make the playoffs. Also, good teams with no leadership also don’t make playoffs. In this case there are no leaders on a good team (cowboys).

    Last years defense was bad. Has it been poor talent and execution for the last 5 years?? How is the talent good enough for a winning record till Nov and then bad for a 8-12 record in Dec?

    If this is just media generated issue, why are so many people talking about it? Right from Jerry to Stephen to Hatcher!

  19. jenniferxxx says: Feb 25, 2012 6:05 PM

    So do lemmings … but results may vary.

  20. hedleykow says: Feb 25, 2012 6:27 PM

    Jeez…I thought these guys get paid a million or two for showing up. WTF?? What a bunch of fracking whining a$$ cry babies.

  21. deucedavenport says: Feb 25, 2012 6:29 PM

    Actually they did make the playoffs in 3 of the past 6 years, so I guess they must have had good leadership in those 3 seasons and not the other three? At least according to your logic. They’ve had a lot of flaws, whether it comes to coaching, lack of talent and depth at key positions, poor team play, etc. The bottom line is they didn’t have enough all around to do anything significant. People want to talk about it cause the media brings it up likes its their most glaring issue. The media asked Hatch who their leaders were, and he said he wasn’t sure. Who cares. Not the problem here.

    Is someone screaming in the huddle and “holding others accountable” gonna make Terence Newman or Alan Ball cover and tackle any better? Make Bradie James and Keith Brooking any faster? Get a decent pass rush when Ware and Ratliff are double teamed? Takes talent and teamwork to win in this league.

  22. itsnotforme says: Feb 25, 2012 6:31 PM

    Jason have you been drinking JJ’s Kool-aide again?

  23. bobhk says: Feb 25, 2012 7:29 PM

    deucedavenport says:
    Feb 25, 2012 6:29 PM
    Actually they did make the playoffs in 3 of the past 6 years, so I guess they must have had good leadership in those 3 seasons and not the other three? At least according to your logic. They’ve had a lot of flaws, whether it comes to coaching, lack of talent and depth at key positions, poor team play, etc. The bottom line is they didn’t have enough all around to do anything significant. People want to talk about it cause the media brings it up likes its their most glaring issue. The media asked Hatch who their leaders were, and he said he wasn’t sure. Who cares. Not the problem here.

    Is someone screaming in the huddle and “holding others accountable” gonna make Terence Newman or Alan Ball cover and tackle any better? Make Bradie James and Keith Brooking any faster? Get a decent pass rush when Ware and Ratliff are double teamed? Takes talent and teamwork to win in this league.
    ————–
    It wasn’t just the media. Jones himself said that the difference between cowboys and giants was eli. Very telling. Stephen Jones said Romo needs to work on his leadership.

    They did go to the playoffs 3 years and have *one* victory to show for it. Like I said, they’ve had talent (D is not good this year but has been good in others).
    With the season on line, that talented O laid an egg (14 points) against Giants. Can’t pin that on Brooking. Poor leadership.

  24. vancitymanpurse says: Feb 25, 2012 8:02 PM

    The Cowboys seemed to perform much better when cocaine was their leader…….

  25. bobhk says: Feb 25, 2012 8:04 PM

    BTW they don’t have to scream but they do get people raising their performance at players only meeting.

  26. boswivel says: Feb 25, 2012 8:16 PM

    I’m a Cowboys fan and I can’t read any of this because someone might have suggested that linebacker we got from the 1982 Falcons. Keith something. Grrrrr.

  27. 4thqtrsaint says: Feb 25, 2012 11:43 PM

    Not a Cowboys fan here. There are a variety of reasons they are underachieving. It’s not just “lack of talent” or “Leadership” or whatever. Having watched a few games over the last few years, I’ve seen boneheaded plays, blown assignments, bad luck, bad coaching, and dozen of other reasons teams lose. Its not as simple as the media makes it out to be.
    But if leadership is in question on this team, it comes down to Jerry Jones’s inability to lead that costs them. His decision making is not that great. In a man with any power, you need to surround yourself with great, talented people. If he did that in the front office, and let those great, talented people do their jobs, you would see an immediate change in that team. GMs manage better, scouts scout better, coaches coach better & Romo would be golfing.

    Cowboys should trade Demarcus and a 1st rounder to go get Luck or RG3.

  28. deucedavenport says: Feb 26, 2012 12:21 AM

    But you said good teams with no leadership don’t go to the playoffs? Which is it? So Romo completes that season changing pass to Austin that could’ve ended the Giants hopes if he were more of a leader? It comes down to skill and execution.

    And by the way, JJ and son also think the Cowboys as currently constructed are that close to a title, and the only difference is “lack of leadership”. Its this type of blind faith that leaves us Cowboys fans beyond frustrated with him running the personnel aspect of the team. He doesn’t see the glaring talent discrepancies they have at too many key positions.

  29. plumbstupid says: Feb 27, 2012 4:00 PM

    Romo is a leader in the clubhouse . . . at the golf course.

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