Like the Cowboys, Jason Garrett had an up-and-down season in his first full year as an NFL head coach. He helped the Cowboys and quarterback Tony Romo produce one of the league’s top offenses, but Garrett flubbed two clock-management situations during a 1-4 stretch to end the year.
New offensive coordinator Bill Callahan said all coaches pride themselves on managing the game and clock well, but every coach can use some help, too.
“My philosophy has always been to help when that clock is rolling and you get in those crucial, critical situations – everybody has input,” he said Thursday at Valley Ranch, asked if part of his new duties will be to help Garrett with game management. “Just to make the playcaller aware, to stay ahead of the clock so he can anticipate a certain situation. That’s always helpful.”
Callahan, who has been a Super Bowl head coach in the NFL with the Raiders and a college head coach at Nebraska, said even for the most experienced coaches, some situations come up that are unpredictable.
“We all pride ourselves on understanding the game, but you know, you practice all those special situations and there are some that will come up at some point in time that you can’t predict,” he said. “They’ll come up, and you’ve got to be able to respond in a heartbeat. I think we all pride ourselves at it because we love the game so much. But you know, it’s different every Sunday, and it’s different in each game.”
Callahan said that when he was with the Raiders, he expected help from his other coaches.
“I had a great staff, so yeah, I relied on them, no doubt about it,” he said. “I certainly relied on their input, their suggestions, their recommendations. No doubt about it. And not only that, from the defensive side of the ball, we had some guys who were pretty savvy in terms of clock management, situational football that could always lend some advice, some thoughts. That’s part of having a great staff, is to draw upon some experiences, their knowledge, their usefulness.”
-- Carlos Mendez