Dallas Cowboys: Kellen Moore’s success as OC could come down to this

ARLINGTON, TX - JANUARY 03: Kellen Mooore (Photo by Tom Pennington/Getty Images)
ARLINGTON, TX - JANUARY 03: Kellen Mooore (Photo by Tom Pennington/Getty Images) /

For Kellen Moore to succeed in his first season as the Dallas Cowboys offensive coordinator he’s going to need this to happen…

The Dallas Cowboys surprised a lot of people this past offseason when they named second year coach Kellen Moore their offensive coordinator. It’s not often a position of such status and importance is handed to such a relatively new coach.

The promotion was especially surprising considering Cowboys Head Coach Jason Garrett is coaching in the last year of his deal making this season essentially make-or-break for his Dallas Cowboys coaching career. Trusting an unproven commodity like Moore is a bold move for a conservative coach looking for a new deal.

The early reviews of Kellen Moore have been nothing short of stellar. Granted, anyone Dallas would have brought in to replace former OC Scott Linehan would likely be getting rave reviews, but Kellen’s getting above and beyond all of that.

From the top signal caller to the newest weapon, Kellen Moore has been making an impression around these parts. Even the once suspicious and always outspoken Michael Irvin has changed his tune and endorsed Moore after learning more about his philosophy.

What exactly do we know about Kellen Moore? Not much really. But we do know he’s considered an offensive savant in NFL circles, which basically explains his playing career since it certainly wasn’t physical talent keeping him employed.

We also know Kellen likes to keep things simple for his offense while making it look complicated to the defense. Using different looks and motions but using many of the same established plays is a great way to go about doing that AND it’s something the NFL’s top offenses typically have in common with one another.

So what could stand in the way of Kellen achieving success on a level Dallas Cowboys fans expect? The answer is Jason Garrett.

Jason Garrett may not feel like he’s on the hot seat but his comfort level has to be different coaching on the last year of his deal. As such, he may be more resistant to change, more impatient, and more meddling, than he’d otherwise be with a new offensive coordinator.

Even the best offenses go through peaks and valleys throughout an NFL season. What happens when the Dallas Cowboys dive into that inevitable valley in 2019? Will Jason Garrett pull an “I told you so” and seize control? Will he actively simplify Kellen’s innovation and move back to the ways of old?

I don’t know the answer to that but the idea of it happening isn’t very far-fetched and frankly, understandable, given his contract situation.

Dallas Cowboys’ fans have heard big talk of innovation before and not seen anything come to fruition. Who can forget the bold comments last year at this time about what was in store for Tavon Austin, the “web back?”

The good news is the team, coaching staff, and even the front office seems to have faith in Kellen Moore. Even if Jason Garrett gets nervous this season and finds himself tempted to reign in his creativity, he’s going to have to convince players and the front office he has a better solution.

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Obviously the most important factor in Kellen Moore’s success is Dak Prescott and how he plays in 2019. The Dallas Cowboys’ most improvable part of this team is the passing attack and the passing game lives and dies on the arm of Dak. But the same could be said about any QB’s relationship to his offensive coordinators success.

This also assumes Kellen Moore is more than just talk. Again, we’ve heard good things before about how innovative the offense is going to be, only to be disappointed when the action starts for real. Flashbacks to Linehan will be tough to suppress the first time Moore calls a run on 1st-and-10 from the 20.

But if Moore really is tuned in to innovation. If he really is about movement and disguising intentions. If he’s really using analytics and probability. The only thing that can realistically hold him back is a nervous head coach.

Next. Are we undervaluing Byron Jones and the CB position?. dark

Kellen Moore can only soar as high as his nervous head coach lets him. Let’s hope that’s pretty high and we finally get to see what we’ve been promised.

  • Published on 05/13/2019 at 12:30 PM
  • Last updated at 05/13/2019 at 12:07 PM