IRVING, Texas – Jason Garrett's process-oriented press conferences can seem unemotional and mechanical, as the same answers to questions tend to pop up every week.
Garrett said he's mindful of the audience listening to him every time he takes the podium, and his answers can reflect that as he attempts to speak in the team's best interest.
"One of the things I've always tried to do is be very respectful of the person who's asking me the question and try to the best of my ability to answer that question for him or for her. But all the while, I understand that my first obligation is to the Dallas football Cowboys," Garrett said on his radio show on 105.3 FM. "That's the first thing that goes through my mind every time I attempt to answer a question, so there's a filter. That's the first filter."
The next "filter" for Garrett is to understand the audience, which includes Cowboys' coaches and members of the rest of the 31 other teams in the NFL, including that week's opponent.
"You're always thinking about the competitive advantages or disadvantages of every answer that you give," Garrett said. "I would love to sit back and be very candid with every answer. You ask me a question and I shoot from the hip and give you the most honest, straightforward answer I can give you."
That's not what typically occurs. Instead, the result at his press conferences tends to be a reserved, calculated response to every question that's asked, which he knows can get monotonous. But he remained adamant that his politically correct responses don't reflect how much he cares.
"The point I'd like to make is unemotional does not mean detached," Garrett said. "We're all very, very committed to this. We're all very, very passionate about this. We're all very, very emotional about this. Some of us show it in different ways, but you cannot be involved in this business without being emotional and passionate.
"Those guys in the media who know me a little bit away from those press settings know that I can be more candid with them 1-on-1, and I think that's an important thing, too. But when everything you say is going to be on a radio or going to be on TV for lots of different kinds of people to hear, I just think you have to be very careful with what you say."
Garrett said he realizes the frustration that can follow for media members and the fans when he doesn't answer as candidly as he could. He said he doesn't take that lightly, and he wants to convey as best as possible to the fans what he's trying to accomplish, while also keeping his team's integrity intact.
"I want people to know that my motivations are pure and they're in the interest of the Dallas Cowboys, and anything I can do to make sure I serve that first and then be entertaining beyond that, I'll try my best to do that," Garrett said.