Jason Garrett finally told he won't return as Cowboys coach

Finally, we can add the Dallas Cowboys to the list of teams looking for a new head coach.

It’s not much of a surprise that head coach Jason Garrett won’t be back. He was in the final year of his contract, and he oversaw one of the most disappointing Dallas seasons in recent memory. It was a surprise that it took a full week for the Cowboys to make it official.

Cowboys owner Jerry Jones finally fired Garrett after years of patience and one more odd week thrown on at the end. Fox’s Jay Glazer reported and ESPN’s Adam Schefter confirmed that Garrett was finally told by the Cowboys on Sunday evening he would not be returning as the team’s head coach, after a weird week of speculation. Garrett, the former Cowboys quarterback who was the team’s coach since the 2010 season, won only two playoff games and never made the NFC championship game.

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Jones always thinks big, and Garrett couldn’t get the Cowboys back to the Super Bowl. He had plenty of chances.

Dallas Cowboys legend Michael Irvin in recent years
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Dallas Cowboys legend Michael Irvin in recent years
Broadcast analyst and Hall of Famer Michael Irvin walks the red carpet before the first round of the NFL football draft, Thursday, April 26, 2018, in Arlington, Texas. (AP Photo/Eric Gay)
INDIANAPOLIS, IN - MARCH 02: Hall of Fame wide receiver Michael Irvin (right) and former wide receiver Steve Smith Sr. commentate for NFL Network during day three of the NFL Combine at Lucas Oil Stadium on March 2, 2019 in Indianapolis, Indiana. (Photo by Joe Robbins/Getty Images)
ATLANTA, GEORGIA - JANUARY 31: Michael Irvin attends SiriusXM at Super Bowl LIII Radio Row on January 31, 2019 in Atlanta, Georgia. (Photo by Cindy Ord/Getty Images for SiriusXM)
LOS ANGELES, CA - JANUARY 10: Michael Irvin is seen on January 10, 2019 in Los Angeles, CA. (Photo by Hollywood To You/Star Max/GC Images)
JIMMY KIMMEL LIVE! - 'Jimmy Kimmel Live!' airs every weeknight at 11:35 p.m. EST and features a diverse lineup of guests that include celebrities, athletes, musical acts, comedians and human interest subjects, along with comedy bits and a house band. The guests for Thursday, January 10 included Claire Foy ('First Man'), Michael Irvin (NFL playoffs), and musical guest Disturbed. (Randy Holmes via Getty Images) GUILLERMO RODRIGUEZ, MICHAEL IRVIN, JIMMY KIMMEL
ARLINGTON, TX - NOVEMBER 29: Former Dallas Cowboys Receiver Michael Irvin celebrates after the game between the Dallas Cowboys and New Orleans Saints on November 29, 2018 at AT&T Stadium in Arlington, TX. (Photo by Andrew Dieb/Icon Sportswire via Getty Images)
PITTSBURGH, PA - NOVEMBER 08: NFL Network analyst Michael Irvin looks on prior to the game between the Carolina Panthers and the Pittsburgh Steelers at Heinz Field on November 8, 2018 in Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania. (Photo by Joe Sargent/Getty Images)
CLEVELAND, OH - SEPTEMBER 20, 2018: Hall of Fame wide receiver and NFL Network analyst Michael Irvin prior to a game between the New York Jets and Cleveland Browns on September 20, 2018 at FirstEnergy Stadium in Cleveland, Ohio. Cleveland won 21-17. (Photo by: 2018 Nick Cammett/Diamond Images/Getty Images)
Michael Irvin walks onto the field as the University of Miami Hurricanes take on the LSU Tigers during the AdvoCare Classic on Sunday, Sept. 2, 2018 at at AT&T Stadium in Arlington, Texas. Irving, a retired American football player, actor and sports commentator, played college football at the University of Miami, then for the Dallas Cowboys. (Al Diaz/Miami Herald/TNS via Getty Images)
ARLINGTON, TX - APRIL 26: Pro Football Hall of Famer and NFL Network Analyst Michael Irvin reacts during the first round of the 2018 NFL Draft at AT&T Stadium on April 26, 2018 in Arlington, Texas. (Photo by Tom Pennington/Getty Images)
ARLINGTON, TX - APRIL 26: Former NFL player and current NFL Network Host Michael Irvin poses with fans during the first round of the NFL Draft on April 26, 2018 at AT&T Stadium in Arlington, TX. (Photo by Andrew Dieb/Icon Sportswire via Getty Images)
CHARLOTTE, NC - DECEMBER 02: University of Miami alumnus Michael Irvin reacts on the sideline at the ACC Football Championship at Bank of America Stadium on December 2, 2017 in Charlotte, North Carolina. (Photo by Streeter Lecka/Getty Images)
Former Dallas Cowboys receiver Michael Irvin (88) takes a selfie as he was one of several players introduced from the 1992 Super Bowl team before a game against the Philadelphia Eagles on November 19, 2017, at AT&T Stadium in Arlington, Texas. (Brad Loper/Fort Worth Star-Telegram/TNS via Getty Images)
LAS VEGAS, NV - AUGUST 26: Former NFL player Michael Irvin arrives on T-Mobile's magenta carpet duirng the Showtime, WME IME and Mayweather Promotions VIP Pre-Fight Party for Mayweather vs. McGregor at T-Mobile Arena on August 26, 2017 in Las Vegas, Nevada. (Photo by David Becker/Getty Images for Showtime)
BEVERLY HILLS, CA - AUGUST 11: Michael Irvin attends the 17th Annual Harold & Carole Pump Foundation Gala at The Beverly Hilton Hotel on August 11, 2017 in Beverly Hills, California. (Photo by Vivien Killilea/Getty Images for Harold & Carole Pump Foundation)

Jason Garrett let go due to disappointing season

Garrett’s job security has been a constant topic of conversation in Dallas, but Jones kept bringing Garrett back. Even after the season, when everyone assumed Garrett would be fired, there was no word from the Cowboys that he would not be the team’s coach anymore. The team reportedly interviewed Mike McCarthy and Marvin Lewis for the job, and Garrett still hadn’t been let go.

That was odd because by Thanksgiving it seemed clear Garrett was done as Cowboys coach.

On Thanksgiving, the Cowboys were flat and sloppy in a one-sided 26-15 loss to the Buffalo Bills. As the Cowboys were hopelessly behind on a huge stage, about to drop to 6-6, that’s the point everyone knew Garrett’s time was up. Then the Cowboys followed that up with another flop on national TV, a terrible loss to the Chicago Bears. The final straw came in Week 16, when the Cowboys had a chance to salvage an NFC East title and lost 17-9 to the Philadelphia Eagles. Sunday’s win over Washington wasn’t going to change much, especially when the Eagles beat the Giants to clinch the NFC East.

The Cowboys came into this season with high hopes and looked good early in the season, but the season faded fast. Dallas started 3-0, then lost three in a row and were 6-7 after that bad Bears loss. A win over the Rams in Week 15 gave some false hope. The Eagles loss was a trip back to reality.

The first clear sign that Jones had run out of patience came after a 13-9 loss to the New England Patriots in Week 12. Special-teams miscues plagued the Cowboys and Garrett’s decision to kick a short field goal on fourth down late in the fourth quarter instead of going for a touchdown was second-guessed.

"With the makeup of this team, I shouldn't be this frustrated," Jones said after that loss to the Patriots.

Four days later, the Cowboys were smashed at home by the Bills with a huge Thanksgiving audience watching. Jones said Garrett would keep his job for the rest of the season, but everyone figured that barring a miracle Super Bowl run, there would be someone new in 2020. It just took a few days into 2020 to get to that place.

Next Cowboys coach will feel pressure too

Garrett wasn’t bad in the regular season. In 2010, he went 5-3 after taking over in midseason for fired Wade Phillips, who had started the year 1-7. He had only one losing season in his nine full seasons as Cowboys coach. Even with how bad 2019 was for the Cowboys, they finished it 8-8. But he made the playoffs only three times and never made a deep run.

The Cowboys had a stacked roster with plenty of stars. Jones paid big money to keep defensive end DeMarcus Lawrence, then paid more to have running back Ezekiel Elliott end his holdout. Clearly Dallas was loading up for a big season. When that didn’t happen, Garrett couldn’t survive it.

The roster and Jones’ desire to spend money is why the job will be attractive. Assuming the Cowboys figure out a way to bring back quarterback Dak Prescott, there are a lot of key pieces always in place, and a new coach will know that Jones will always be aggressive in fielding the best roster possible. It’s also a good bet that Jones could at least make runs at some of the biggest names possible, like former Ohio State and Florida coach Urban Meyer and Oklahoma coach Lincoln Riley.

Cowboys head coach is one of the highest profile jobs in sports. The bar is high for the job because Jones doesn’t do anything halfway. Whoever gets the job next will be under pressure immediately. As Garrett can attest, that’s always part of the Cowboys job.

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Frank Schwab is a writer for Yahoo Sports. Have a tip? Email him at shutdown.corner@yahoo.com or follow him on Twitter! Follow @YahooSchwab

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