FRISCO - We're not being fair to Mike McCarthy.
The Dallas Cowboys head coach is the overseer of a 5-1 juggernaut, and to ascend to this position, McCarthy has logically done a "skillion'' (an owner Jerry Jones word) things right.
Still, what about that "game management''? What about McCarthy vs. "McClock''?
“I’ve been a head coach a long time,'' McCarthy said in answering criticism of his "game management.'' "The longer you do it, the things that they say negative about you just kind of stack up. It’s part of the job responsibility, frankly. That’s kind of where I leave it.''
But he didn't leave it there, the long-time NFL coach, with a Green Bay Packers' Super Bowl trophy to his credit, adding a rather incendiary analysis of ... analysis.
"I get it, analytics are great,'' said McCarthy, who has not always felt that way, but included the subject, in a positive way, in the Jones family job interview from a year-and-a-half ago that led to him joining "America's Team.'' "But analytics has become a weapon for the media.''
There is a danger in misunderstanding McCarthy's "weapon'' view as an attack on the media, or as a defensive position. But in fact, he's stating the truth. The increase in intel - from Madden video games to all-22 film access, all wonderful advancements - have made mini-GM's and mini-coaches of us all.
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Again, knowledge is power. But maybe we should balance our on-the-couch expertise with some level of respect for the boss. After all, that's what Cowboys owner Jerry Jones - who lives and dies with every win and loss, just like you do - does.
“I’m right in there with (McCarthy) on his game management,” Jones said (via 105.3 The Fan). “I think he does it extremely well. More importantly I want all our fans to know how conscientious about how hard he works on it, the detail of situational rehearsal and practice he does.”
The first point (that he's a master of this particular aspect of coaching) is worth debating, as our columnist Richie Whitt does here, fiercely. The second point is an absolute fact: McCarthy and staff and players expend great energy in trying to get it right.
"We put a tremendous amount of time in game management and those types of decisions,'' said McCarthy, who gets another crack at it Sunday night at Minnesota. "I’m a big process individual. I believe in the process of preparation. Our team knows that we’re all committed to doing it the right way. At the end of the day, the decisions I make are to make sure we give the players a chance to win the game. That, to me, needs to be the end result of your game management situations.''
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