Monday, October 13, 2008

A cry for accountability

With all the talk about accountability, what's happening in Dallas with the Cowboys is an interesting case study.

Here's a team that was picked by many experts to not only win their division and their conference, but to win the Super Bowl.

After losing to Arizona yesterday, the team is 4-2. Not bad, but they've lost 2 of 3 and, based on their last three games, are really struggling.

As one of the Dallas players put it:

"Everybody thinks we're the most talented team – I'm talking about our mind-set – and just because we're the most talented team, we're going to win games. You can say we're the most talented team on paper, but that doesn't make you win the game, it only makes other teams play better."

According to a good column in today's Dallas paper:

Jerry [Jones] and [Wade] Phillips provide ready-made excuses for every mistake these players make. Responsible parents don't do that for their children, and responsible coaches and owners shouldn't do it for their players.

This team has taken on the personality of its coach. Under Phillips, the players lack urgency and they play like it because if they make a mistake, it's no big deal, they'll get it right next time.

Frankly, the players want accountability.

"We had good practices, but at times we're just lax. Maybe we need our [expletive] chewed out," Patrick Crayton said. "Washington should have been our wakeup call, but I guess we hit the snooze button.

"Hopefully, this is the one we need. This is just sickening. We need to take it upon ourselves and be accountable with each other."

Especially since the coach and owner won't make them accountable.