FRISCO, Texas – After a dizzying day of updates, things are – not much clearer, to be honest.
It's been the type of news cycle that could only happen to the Dallas Cowboys, as speculation has circulated all day Monday about what the future might hold for Jason Garrett's coaching staff.
To be clear, Garrett said Monday afternoon that no those discussions have not taken place yet.
"We're going to have our first, real staff meeting here when I get done with the press conference and we'll talk about all of that staff stuff, so we haven't had any substantive conversations in regards to our staff at all," he said.
Garrett was peppered with questions about his coaching staff, specifically offensive coordinator Scott Linehan, at the outset of his season-ending press conference. That of course is due to a comment he made Monday morning on a regularly-scheduled radio appearance with 105.3 FM The Fan in Dallas.
"We don't anticipate any significant changes on our staff," Garrett said on the show.
That proved to be quite an incendiary comment, which shouldn't come as a surprise to those who follow the team. The Cowboys' offense struggled mightily at times in 2018, finishing 22nd in the NFL in both scoring and yards per game. Their red zone struggled were also a season-long mystery, sparking plenty of outcry from fans and media about Linehan's job security.
In a fitting twist to the story, Garrett wasn't the only Cowboys official who had a radio appearance on Monday. Team executive vice president Stephen Jones appeared on the same station later on Monday morning, where he said it was far too soon after a playoff loss to be speculating about coaches' futures.
"Really don't want to comment on anything other than I will say that we were, this team, coming off a 3-5 start to the first half of the season, did a really nice job of getting themselves back into the hunt," Jones said. "Obviously got themselves to a big game against the Rams out in L.A. We didn't get the job done and fell short. But other than that, I think it's a little early to be speculating about players, coaches, anything like that other than I really do think our group overall did a nice job."
All of that combined to bring things back to Garrett on Monday afternoon where he clarified himself.
"Yeah, again, we haven't had any substantive conversations," he said. "Scott did an excellent job for us this year. Again, I don't know how I answered that question this morning. Nothing has changed."
Taken at face value, this makes plenty of sense. As Garrett and Jones both pointed out, it had been less than 48 hours since the Cowboys' season ended. Garrett and his coaching staff have been busy conducting exit interviews with players for much of the last two days.
It's logical to think the Cowboys haven't discussed long-term decisions as of yet.
Having said that, it's still an interesting look for the head coach to reverse course on the topic – especially concerning an offensive coordinator who has drawn so much scrutiny over the course of the season.
Whether that means anything moving forward, only time will tell. But when the Cowboys do eventually sit down to evaluate their staff, Garrett said they'll do so together.
"Like with everything they're all collaborative decisions," he said. "I do not own the team. Jerry Jones owns the team. Ultimately, he has final say over everything we do here. But I do believe our relationship is very collaborative."