When the 2020 NFL season dawns, it will be the first for the Cowboys without Jason Garrett on the sidelines in more than a decade.
Despite the parting of ways, Cowboys vice president Stephen Jones had nothing but fond sentiment for Garrett.
"Jason is a football guy. He wants to go coach. He's a great offensive mind. They got a good one in coach Garrett," Jones said Tuesday from the Senior Bowl in Mobile, Alabama, via The Athletic's Jon Machota. "He was nothing but a class act here. I know he'll certainly help the Giants get on the road to where they want to go."
Nonetheless, it would appear there's no bad blood -- at least on the Jones front -- after dismissing Garrett, who compiled an 85-67 record with the Cowboys, including an underwhelming 8-8 campaign this past season that proved to be his undoing.
While the Cowboys have moved on from the Garrett era, plenty more uncertainty remains for the roster.
Jones spoke on some of it in addition to complimenting Garrett.
»On signing quarterback Dak Prescott and receiver Amari Cooper, whose contracts are up at the onset of a new league year, Jones said a Prescott deal is the No. 1 priority and Cooper is No. 2.
»Former Pro Bowl linebacker Leighton Vander Esch recently underwent neck surgery and Jones said it went well. "I feel really good about him making a full recovery and being ready to participate in everything."
»Following the hiring of McCarthy, assembling a new supporting staff has come into place. "Very pleased with what he's put together. It seems like we have a lot of experience," Jones said. "Overall, he's real pleased with how it's come together."
»Lone Star legend tight end Jason Witten came out of retirement for the 2019 season, but it was just a one-year deal. Jones offered no news on what lies ahead in that regard. "Really nothing there to comment on," he said.
»As for the Cowboys as a whole, despite an underwhelming 2019 campaign, the future is now and the future is bright. "I think we have a good team that's in its prime," he said. "Part of the reason Jerry [Jones] and I were set on finding a coach with not only experience but a coach that had real success in the playoffs ... because we do believe this team can certainly have that type of success."