Pillow Talk: Does Kicker Maher’s ‘I Feel Good’ Review Reveal Cowboys’ Poor Mindset?
FRISCO - It is dangerous to use an NFL kicker as a team-wide mood thermometer. But Brett Maher’s outrageous Dallas Cowboys self-evaluation is simply too inviting to ignore.
“I hit every ball pretty well tonight,” Maher said late Thursday in Chicago after his obvious inability to “hit every ball pretty well” contributed greatly to Dallas' 31-24 loss at Chicago. “I’ll put my head on the pillow tonight feeling good about I did this week. I feel good.”
In 35 years of covering NFL locker rooms, I’m not sure I’ve ever heard a less sensible, more tone-deaf, self-review.
Maher missed a 42-yarder early that seemed to suck most of the life out of his already-struggling team, and later clunked a kickoff went out of bounds so prematurely that it allowed the Bears an easy 60-yard, three-play TD drive.
And that one sucked the remainder of the life out of a 6-7 Dallas club that has lost seven of the last 10, its first-place post in the NFC East notwithstanding.
"Obviously, we have to do a close evaluation of it,” reviewed coach Jason Garrett on 105.3 The Fan. “We brought three kickers in (for tryouts) earlier in the week. We decided to give Brett an opportunity this week. It didn't work out. So we have to take a real close, hard look at that."
A few takes:
1) A source on Friday morning tells me the Cowboys brass has yet to meet to determine the dubious fate of Maher. But that meeting is coming.
2) Dallas didn’t really bring in NFL kickers. The Cowboys gave tryouts to XFL kids. Wake me up when Blair Walsh, Cody Parkey and Matt Bryant have DFW plane tickets.
3) “It didn’t work out” is not a new phenomenon. Maher is 20-of-30 on field goals this season. The 10 misses makes Maher the least-accurate kicker in the last half-decade in the NFL.
4) Maybe Brett's odd remarks reflect his attempt to mimic being a "Garrett Guy'' - with robotic answers revealing nothing. (Except that "pillow''thing?!) Or maybe Brett is whistling past the graveyard, announcing his (fake) confidence so it'll allow him future employment elsewhere.
5) I’m not a big “Cut Curvin Richards Gimmick” guy. You know, release a player to “scare” his teammates into focus. But it was a Jimmy Johnson staple and it’s a trick Garrett’s never really tried in his decade here.
But if Maher's ignorant view of his job performance is at all reflective of what's occurring right now in this organization ... What would it hurt to have “heads roll” now - especially as Brett Maher’s head is already resting so comfortably on his pillow?