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Garrett "Absolutely" Confident Kiffin Is Still Right Fit At DC

Posted Dec 11, 2013


IRVING, Texas – One word answers can say a lot.

Jason Garrett gave one in his press conference Wednesday when asked if he was still confident about Monte Kiffin being his defensive coordinator.

“Absolutely,” Garrett said with a blank stare that seemed to suggest he doesn’t think the 73-year-old coordinator is the biggest problem they have on the defensive side of the ball.

So if it’s not replacing Kiffin, which seems to be the popular opinion among Cowboys fans and media critics, then what does the head coach see as a viable solution?

“We’ve just got to go back to work and look at what happened in the [Chicago] ballgame,” Garrett said. “There’s some technical things, there’s some scheme things. … We just have to make the necessary corrections. A couple of different times when we’ve had some bad games or didn’t do what we needed to do on defense, we made the correction and played better. We simply have to do that again.”

Garrett did address a few specific things defensively in his press conference:

    • The “big dime” defense that had Barry Church playing as linebacker was something we saw when Sean Lee was hurt against the Giants and Raiders, but it wasn’t used Monday night. Garrett said it’s “certainly a possibility” to bring it back, depending on the health of the linebackers.
    • Garrett wouldn’t say his cornerbacks are consistently giving up too many plays but agreed there is room for improvement.

“I don’t make a blanket statement about that. I think at different times our corners have played very well this year and they’ve made a lot of plays,” he said. “Whether it’s breaking passes up or making plays on the ball for interceptions and creating takeaways. We’re still among the best in the NFL at creating takeaways and they’ve been a part of that. But you always want them to play better and more consistently and make all those plays. We’ll watch the tape and make sure we do that this coming week.”

  • When asked about the starting safeties, Garrett said rookie Jeff Heath would likely continue his role as the starter with J.J. Wilcox rotating in on the nickel and dime packages. Heath has started just six games and has 50 tackles, good for sixth on the team.

“Jeff has been the starter and he has done a nice job and we want to create competition at the different positions,” Garrett said. “We feel right now that Jeff is worthy of that starting spot, and we also want to give Wilcox some opportunities to go out there and play.”

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