ARLINGTON, Texas – One day before leaving for training camp to motivate and instruct their own players, Cowboys coaches took time to do the same for local coaches at Cowboys Stadium.
The Cowboys hosted a free coaches clinic Thursday for approximately 250 middle school and youth football coaches from 8:30 a.m. to 4:30 p.m., speaking to the participants about the team's coaching philosophy and fundamentals.
"Every single day as a football coach you've got to have passion for the game, enthusiasm for the game, emotion for the game," head coach Jason Garrett said to the coaches. "You've got to show it. We want that from our players, don't we? And if we just talk about it, it means nothing."
Garrett, along with the rest of his coaching staff and owner/general manager Jerry Jones, addressed the participants and fielded questions. Former Cowboy Tony Casillas also spoke to the participants about Heads Up Football, which is an NFL effort to make football a better and safer game.
Garrett spoke to the participants on a podium, calling coaching "the greatest profession in the world." He said every coach must have a passion for it and demonstrate it every day so others can follow their lead.
"Encouragement is the oxygen of the soul," Garrett said. "I don't care if you're talking about kids who are 8 years old, 18 years old, 28 or 38 years old, they need encouragement."
Offensive coordinator Bill Callahan spoke about the need to have conviction and a belief in a specific area to be great at. He said when he went to the Jets and worked with Mark Sanchez as a rookie quarterback, the group in New York focused on the running game and made a vow to lead the league in rushing and help their young signal caller.
"With that being said, we talked about it, we emphasized it, we coached it, we preached it, we believed in it, we committed to that, and then it happened," Callahan said.
He also talked about the need to focus on players rather than plays and to keep everything simple. [embedded_ad]
"It's not about the system," Callahan said. "It's about what your players can do. So as you start to think about how you're going to fashion your system to your players, give that some thought. Who are your best players? How am I going to get them the ball? What am I going to do to ensure that we're going to have offensive success? You've got to think players first."
Clinic registration was fully underwritten by Gene and Jerry Jones Family Charities, so participants received coaching instruction at no cost. All coaches who registered early received entry into the event, breakfast, lunch, two complimentary tickets to a Cowboys preseason game, a USA Football Coaching Book and a gift bag.