Cowboys To Retain HC Mike McCarthy For 2024 Season

The Cowboys’ impressive 2023 regular season ended unceremoniously in an all too familiar fashion when the team lost at home to the Packers much earlier into the playoffs than expected. Despite many fans and pundits claiming they’ve seen enough of head coach Mike McCarthy in Dallas, Adam Schefter of ESPN reports that the fourth-year Cowboys coach will return for the 2024 season.

The Cowboys have not advanced past the divisional round of the playoffs since the last time they won the Super Bowl in 1995. Since then, they have seen early exits from the playoffs in 13 seasons, and frustratingly enough, their season has been ended by the Packers in heartbreaking fashion three times in the last nine years.

McCarthy has a long history of coaching winning football as a head coach. Before his time in Dallas, McCarthy spent 13 years as the head coach in Green Bay, amassing a 125-77-2 regular season record. Under McCarthy, the Packers made the playoffs nine times, including eight straight years from 2009-16. While they only won a single Super Bowl in that time, McCarthy still left Green Bay with a winning record in the playoffs (10-8) and advanced to the NFC championship game four times.

After the 28 years of failing to make it to the league’s semifinal game, Dallas invited McCarthy with open arms in 2020. He replaced Jason Garrett, who had been in place with the Cowboys for 10 years, making him the second-longest tenured head coach in Dallas history behind Tom Landry. Garrett went 85-67 during his time and led the team to the playoffs three times, all three times losing in the divisional round, two of those times to the Packers.

Since McCarthy has taken over, the Cowboys have been nothing if not consistent. After a getting-to-know-you introductory season that saw the team go 6-10, Dallas has gone 12-5 in each season since, winning the NFC East in two of those years. Unfortunately, McCarthy’s playoff success from Green Bay hasn’t quite translated. Under McCarthy, the Cowboys have only gone 1-3 in three playoff appearances, twice being the dreaded one-and-done team.

In a statement, team owner/president/general manager/supreme ruler Jerry Jones touted McCarthy’s .627 winning percentage as the Cowboys’ head coach, the highest percentage for a head coach in Dallas’ storied history. Jones claimed that the team will “dedicated (themselves), in partnership with (McCarthy)” to translate his regular season success into postseason victories, per Tom Pelissero of NFL Network.

Jones historically has a pretty long fuse with head coaches. According to Albert Breer of Sports Illustrated, during Jones’ 35 years of ownership, only two coaches failed to make it through four years on the job. That being said, he didn’t fire Garrett before hiring McCarthy; he simply allowed Garrett’s contract to expire and made the decision not to extend him for more time.

With that in mind, McCarthy is headed into the final year of his contract in Dallas. It wouldn’t be out of Jones’ pattern of behavior to use 2024 as a prove-it year for McCarthy. Jones pronounced his dedication to McCarthy in today’s statement, but an extension within the next year would be a much louder statement. Until we see a new contract for McCarthy or a postseason with multiple wins, McCarthy’s seat in Dallas is going to continue feeling hot.

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