Mike McCarthy will remain the head coach of the Dallas Cowboys, owner Jerry Jones said after the team’s loss to the San Francisco 49ers in the divisional round on Sunday.
Jones told reporters that Sunday’s 19-12 result didn’t change anything for McCarthy’s job security. Jones also defended McCarthy for the way he handled the kicking situation with Brett Maher, who saw his extra point blocked following the Cowboys’ lone touchdown of the game in the second quarter before making two field goals later in the game.
“Their decision with our kicker was exonerated with his field goal in my mind,” Jones said. “I’m proud for him.”
However, Jones didn’t hide his disappointment.
“This is very sickening to not win tonight,” Jones said.
The Cowboys’ coaching staff was also under fire for decisions made in the final minutes of the game. Dallas opted to punt the ball back to San Francisco north of the two-minute warning, but let some time tick down before the punt.
On the final play of the game, the Cowboys ran an unusual formation with Ezekiel Elliott at center and the rest of their offensive line lined up wide right. The play quickly blew up, as KaVontae Turpin was immediately tackled after catching Dak Prescott‘s short pass.
Tight end Dalton Schultz also committed a pair of blunders that cost the Cowboys time and yardage on their final drive.
Jones focused on the turnovers though. Prescott threw a pair of interceptions that led to six points for San Francisco, which committed just one turnover on Sunday.
“I think the turnovers, the turnovers were going to make the difference,” Jones said. “I think they’re one or two or in the top three of getting turnovers. Actually, if you looked at the score and all the stats, the turnovers were probably the difference, and our penalties. Seriously, you guys know all the stats. Our team is one that could have handled the situation with everything we had tonight. We came up short.
“We’re sick. We’re sick. We’re sick.”
The 2022 season was arguably the best season of McCarthy’s first three years with the Cowboys. While they didn’t win the NFC East like last season, they finished 12-5 for the second straight year and won their first playoff game in four years.
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