As a lifelong Dallas Cowboys fan, this one hurts.
By awarding domestic-violence offender Greg Hardy to a one-year contract, Dallas Cowboys Head Coach Jason Garrett is the newest member of the 10e Media Hall of Shame. While the free-agent signing further tarnishes the star on the helmet and the reputation of the entire team, it is Garrett who earns a spot in the Hall.
Not Jerry Jones. He has never tried to portray himself as a man of character (or if he has tried, he has failed miserably). For him to recruit a man who would beat a woman comes as no surprise.
Not Greg Hardy. By most counts, he’s a terrible human being, but that was no secret.
No, the Media Hall of Shame is reserved for individuals who stray from their core message, people who consistently and effectively promote an image or idea and then do or say something so reprehensibly dissonant, it severely damages or destroys their brand. Jason Garrett fits the criteria.
Since taking the reigns of the Dallas Cowboys, Garrett has repeatedly spoken of finding “the right type of guy” to play for his team. He has never clearly defined what that meant but he has often mixed in words like “character” and “discipline”, suggesting a reasonable standard of human decency. While he has never said his team would be made up of choirboys, he’s gone out of his way to let everyone know it takes a “special” kind of player to wear the star.
Whether Jason Garrett had any say in the signing of Hardy is almost irrelevant. If he did lobby for the free-agent acquisition, he’s a fraud who has been propagating lies for years. If he had no part in the recruiting of the defensive end, he’s a hapless figurehead who has been misrepresenting himself as an actual leader who would only allow “the right kind of guy” on his roster. In either case, his words collided violently with the actions of his team resulting in serious damage to his personal brand.
Yes, as a lifelong Cowboys fan, this one stings. My boyhood heroes were Roger Staubach and Tom Landry so I always felt as a kid that I was rooting for the good guys. Those days are gone. Jason Garrett just confirmed that.