The Cowboy Way

LxPGu.St.58Monte Kiffin yes the same Monte Kiffin that was “fired” from USC, is the new Defensive Coordinator of the Dallas Cowboys. Jerry Jones you are quickly turning into Al Davis. Rob Ryan was your DC and now you bring in a dinosaur who couldn’t get a talented USC team to stop lesser competition, while giving up 394 yards per game.


Monte Kiffin has plenty of NFL experience, 25 years, and 13 as a defensive coordinator. Kiffin led a fierce Tampa Bay Buccaneers Tampa-2 defense. The Buccaneers finished in the top ten in total defense and scoring defense in 11 of Kiffin’s 13 years and won the Super Bowl in 2002. Kiffin’s defenses were feared throughout the NFL. Yet that was during a different era of football. Kiffin fell behind the times when teams started going four and five wideouts and running a college influenced offense. They same offenses most the PAC 12 teams ran, remember Oregon’s 62 point showcase.


Kiffin is a defensive guru, but can he catch up with today’s game. He has to deal with RG3 twice a season, a quarterback type that Kiffin has had trouble dealing with. Spread offenses are all the rage in the NFL now which Kiffin will have to figure out. He does have two great conerbacks in Morris Claiborne and Brandon Carr, and a fierce pass rusher in DeMarcus Ware. If Sean Lee can stay healthy he will be Kiffin’s Derrick Brooks.


After “leaving” the USC Trojans Kiffin expressed interest in returning to the NFL. After his interview with Jason Garrett Kiffin said, “I came away from the interview process with Jason (Garrett) with a feeling that Dallas is the right place to be. He has this team headed in the right direction.”


Garrett returned the overture by saying, “Obviously, that scheme will offer some changes to our defensive approach moving forward. I have spent the better part of the past two days in conversation with Monte regarding those changes, and we feel very good about our personnel being able to fit the philosophy.


“I know Monte from spending time together with him with the Tampa Bay Buccaneers and had a chance to see him coach up close on a day-to-day basis. His ability to teach everything — from the smallest fundamental details to the big picture of the overall defensive scheme — was always very impressive to me.”


It will be interesting to see if Kiffin can improve the Cowboys defense that ranked 19th in total defense last year. The Cowboys defense gave up a team record 5,687 yards, and only took away a team record low 16 turnovers.  He has players, but does he have the right players for his scheme? That is the main question in this hire. By Steve Kish

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