FRISCO, Texas – For the first time since Sunday's stunning overtime loss to the Jaguars, Cowboys owner/GM Jerry Jones spoke to the media, conducting his usual Tuesday morning segment on 105.3 "The Fan."
As always, Jones was optimistic about his team heading into Saturday's showdown with the Eagles.
Here are a handful of topics Jones touched on, ranging from injuries, the overall state of his team and the latest on the Odell Beckham Jr. situation.
- Since Jones didn't talk to the media following the game Sunday, he was asked about the controversial third-and-10 call to throw a deep pass instead of running to force the Jaguars to burn their final timeout. ""I'm not going to second-guess that call because it's too easy to do the opposite since it didn't work on your second-guessing. But I understand what we're trying to do. I'm not so sure that it's as simple as run or pass there, which really where most of the critique comes from, because if you run, you run time off the clock. There's another part of that equation and it's the route, what you tried to do when you did decide to pass the ball. And that has to be, and is, certainly critiqued and looked at."
- While Dak Prescott's play has come into question here lately, particularly his interceptions, Jones doesn't sound concerned at all with the play of his quarterback. "Outstanding. We can win with him playing like that," Jones said. "I thought he played outstanding. As we see, he wasn't playing against chopped liver out there. And, so, I thought he did played really well. I thought he made good decisions. Overall we can — if he plays like that, we can win most games."
- If Dak's play was "outstanding" to Jones, his right tackle was "amazing." Jones had the highest of praise for Tyron Smith, the longtime left tackle who made his 2022 debut at right tackle. "Tyron was amazing. That's quite an accomplishment for him to come in like that. And I thought (Jason) Peters did well, very well. And, so, that's a good combination. That's really exciting to think that's what you got as we go forward here. So, I give it an A-plus. I feel very good about where we are with Tyron and Peters."
- In regards to the neck injury to Leighton Vander Esch, which is being called a pinched nerve, Jones said there is no plans on bringing in outside help to play linebacker, which is considered a good sign for the long-term health of LVE and his chances to return for the playoffs, if not before. "No, I don't see us addressing it from outside at all. But we really got some good players. That's one of the strengths of where we are with our ability, athletic ability, and really football ability, is our linebacker group," Jones said. "And we are going to — we will play better. We can play the scheme the way we want to play it with the people that we got even though we don't have Vander Esch for a couple games potentially."
- And it wouldn't be an interview with Jones without at least an update on the OBJ situation. Just last Friday, Jones was quoted by the USA Today as saying the deal was all but finalized and he expected Beckham to join the team. But as of Tuesday, that scenario doesn't seem as likely. "As of this morning we don't have anything. I don't have an assessment. The reality is that time is moving on down the road relative to playing in the playoffs. And, so, everyday diminishes our chances of getting going forward."