I want to begin by talking about a Historical perspective that happened here in Dallas. Tom Landry was hired to build the Cowboys and from 1960 to 1964 he led the team to a record of 18-46-4. Fans were all over him, demanding he be fired. The media was all over him demanding the same. Tex Schramm was ready to let him go. The biggest reason the record was so bad, the players had not yet bought into Landry's systems. Point blank they hated them. There was too much thinking involved. The system's were detailed, complicated, and intensive. Tex Schramm approached Clint Murchison with the issues he was facing. Clint took a careful look at all of the evidence and then he did something that was unprecedented. He gave Tom Landry a 10 year extension. Think about it for a minute, 18 wins, 46 losses, 4 ties. In the mind of Clint Murchison that warranted 10 more years. But it wasn't the record that warranted that in Clint's mind, it was that he believed in Landry's systems. The Giants Defenses that he led struggled at first but then became vaunted, feared, and respected. Clint knew from first hand observation that Landry needed players to buy in and it would work. So he laid the foundation for that buy in. If you were a player on the Cowboys in 1965 and you just witnessed your coach get a 10 year extension this is what it told you, I either have to learn to play here, or risk never playing anywhere. In 1965 the Cowboys finally broke the losing seasons cycle by going 7-7. The talent was always there. The commitment to the systems were not. A number of factors kept the Cowboys from being better than a .500 team for that year. One of them was that the Cleveland Browns were just so good. They pounced on Dallas twice. Another reason was they had some very tough last minute losses. But the important thing that happened was that the players bought into Tom Landry. They began to think like him, talk like him, parrot him, and in many ways look for ways to improve as a team. The pay off...1966. One of the most under rated seasons in Dallas Cowboys History. It is under rated because it ended with a post season loss, the first in our History. It was in the 1966 Championship Game for the right to go to Super Bowl I, so if you know NFL History at all you automatically know we lost to Vince Lombardi's Green Bay Packers. The season was 10-3-1. Our first of 20 straight winning seasons. The genesis of Tom Landry's greatness. How under rated was that team? They scored 445 points and averaged almost 32 points per game. To put this in perspective for you it would be approximately 506 points on today's 16 game schedule. They allowed only 239 points, just over 17 points per game. In today's parlance that would be 277 points. At those theoretic numbers for 2011 we would have been 4th in scoring Offense and right on the bubble of 4th or 5th in scoring Defense. The biggest difference from 1965 to 1966 was the focus of the players. There were 2 major differences in the starting rotations. They were LG and LDE. There were some position switches as all teams do, and injuries happened as they always do, but for the most part the teams were extremely similar in makeup. Where they differed was in focus, commitment, and level of education and it led to execution. No successful team in NFL History gets to the point of success without learning from their mistakes and building upon their successes. I will come back to that later. That is why I share that brief History perspective before I launch into this dissertation. I know there will be some who hate every word, can't see the comparison, and get their panties in a wad. Deal with them how you wish. I think it is time to Ignore a lot of voices on this forum. I invite them to Ignore me because quite frankly I am tired of their aura of negativity and failure and they seem to be tired of the positive energy I want to be around. It is simply better that we part ways. The biggest reason to do so is because something great is on the horizon. It is the 2012 NFL Campaign and our Dallas Cowboys are in the running for being one of the most improved teams in the NFL next year. Build a positive network around your passion for this team, and 2012 will be a fantastic season even if like 1966 it ends with a post season loss. Remember I am talking here about a genesis to greatness, not an arrival at it. Too many can't see the forest for the trees. Don't be in that crowd. If you already are, you might want to change your seat. Up to you. So that is the question, how great will Jason Garrett be in 2012? His greatness will be measured against the loyalty and focus of his football team. You have reasons to be believe that is happening if you wish to explore. The opposition will tell you that you hear this every year. Again, I urge you to Ignore them. Tony Romo is not playing tournament golf this off season. I do not agree with this decision but I understand why he is doing it. The media is not going to be able to focus on him being distracted because he won't be. truthfully he never was. If you honestly believe a distracted player can have the kind of season he did last year then you should pray for distractions. Many of Tony's teammates understand why he is doing this and quite frankly they are a little miffed at the DFW media. You will see Cowboys players this year who are pleasant with the media, but you will hear them parroting the non answers of Jason Garrett for the most part. I expect the media to more than every try and rip at the seams and more than ever not be able to do it. In other words the players have bought in, and I mean fully. If you would like to see this for yourself, go to the mother ship (I love that nickname for DC.com) and check out Sean Lee's most recent video. Not only is he helping rookies in his spare time at Valley Ranch but guys like Orie Lemon are pitching in and acting as mentors. It is a team united. If you don't hear him sounding just like Jason Garrett then turn up the sound or turn off the TV behind you because you can't miss it. Not only does he sound like Garrett, but the media points it out. It is around the 2 minute mark on the video. Once they point it out, listen to his response. He gives "the head man" credit and explains why, briefly. It is a non answer, more Garrett influence. You are witnessing the transition from players to team. The next reason is one Michael Irvin can tell you about better than I can. His name is Mike Woicik. No one is negative around Mike Woicik. It isn't allowed. No one is selfish around Mike Woicik. It isn't allowed. Truth be told he is the one person who I think could have tapped into Terrell Owens' and changed him. I mean no disrespect to Joe Jurazsek nor the players for their training last year. The did the best they could with what they had. What they have now is a guru. A guy who has their attention in all the right ways. No one in the NFL knows fitness, nutrition, and preparation better than Mike Woicik. He is the best there is. Listen to Miles Austin today talking about how he is training in a different way. He doesn't directly answer the questions, but you get the idea things are different. He has bought in. Miles will not be alone. Every player is going to mention Mike Woicik. You have a choice. You can listen, or you can turn a deaf ear. If every one of the players feels there is a difference in how they are preparing...well, you figure it out. All over the team you are going to see similar buy ins. There is better coaching than ever. I am going to say it right here and now. Jerome Henderson will make a difference in this team. When top notch coaches want to work for a man, when players want to follow his lead, great things happen. There are no divisions amongst these players. There is excitement. The team is younger, stronger, faster, and hungrier than 2011. Mostly they are more focused. There will be a pay off. I said above that I would come back to learning from mistakes. Miles Austin mentioned that the coaches are fixing last year's mistakes now. The instruction is happening sooner, more focused, and more success oriented. Hopefully that is evident to you. If it isn't, I can't help you. I wish I could, but if the last several years have taught me anything it is that people hate change so much that they'd rather stay in the ruts they are in than just about any other compromise. Back to talent for a minute. You're going to hear it until you are sick of it, or it pumps you up so much that your heart rate rises. We're focused on the right kinds of guys on this team. What are they? Well, I can tell you this, they sure as heck don't believe we are a 6-10 to 8-8 team at best. Process that information however you wish. I've said that I could see what is being built here. I can, I've seen it before at the HS and college levels, and quite frankly I have seen it in the pros too. Jimmy Johnson rebuilt our brand by these same types of principles. Not every coach can do this. Ours can. I say this not because they are affiliated with this team. I say it because I see how they are talking. I hear their message. I see their focus. I know it works. It is happening right before our eyes. Tom Landry said, "I believe something constructive comes from every defeat." So do I. In our case this year that was probably being in a draft position to take one of the 5 blue chip players in this draft at a premier position. There is value in this kind of construction. We upgraded the talent and at the same time the attitude of the team. I did not dislike Terence Newman, but I listened very intently to Darren Woodson when he made his comment about Newman right after the season ended. The finger of blame is gone. Can't have that on this team. We won't have that with Morris Claiborne. Now, I know every rookie is a roll of the dice and we do not know how money will change these kids. It is less likely to change a right kind of guy than a Dez Bryant and I am not trying to throw him under a bus. I think Dez is a good kid. He is respectful. He is talented. But if he has a flaw it is that he is immature. I don't believe Morris or these other kids we landed this year are. Tom Landry also said, "First become a winner in life, then it is easier to become a winner on the field." Sounds like Tom knew the right kinds of guys matter. If you look back at Landry's guys the Hollywood Henderson and Duane Thomas rebels are few and far between the Chuck Howley's, the Charlie Waters, the Rayfield Wrights, the Herb Scotts, the Calvin Hill's, the Dan Reeves, and their ilk. One reason we became America's Teams is that we had All American guys on it and they busted their butts for a coach they believed in. We built a dynasty upon class and class has come back to Dallas. I know I am dumping everything upon the shoulders of Jason Garrett. That is where I want it. He's the right kind of guy. Bet on it. I said above that 1966 was a Genesis not an arrival. It could have been an arrival, and almost was. There is no reason why 2012 can't be an arrival for this team. Every team has flaws. Great teams mask them well. I suspect we will do exactly that and a lot better than a lot of people imagine. It culminates in a system we saw last year where an injury to the guy above you meant this was your chance to seize the brass ring and be the next starter. I would argue that injuries did not defeat us in 2011 and we did have some key ones. Especially in the running game. Injuries won't defeat this team. Romo went down in 2010, they rallied. No matter who goes down in 2012, there will be a rally. That is a buy in. I know this is long and I know it is going to piss some people off. Please let it. If this team wins there will be a bandwagon. It exists in Dallas more than any other franchise in the world in any sport. Everybody loves a winner when the weather is nice. Now is the time to not look like one of them. if the team fails they will say we look like fools for once again buying the off season hype. It is a look I personally prefer. What you prefer is up to you. I said it, great. Don't expect me to back down.