Some things like wine age well, and some things like bold overstatements by an NFL head coach – – don’t.
Such is the case with the statements made last year by Dallas Cowboys’ head coach Mike McCarthy, regarding his strong endorsement on quarterback (QB) Ben DiNucci, who was cut by the team Tuesday.
“Very accurate,” McCarthy said of DiNucci. “Reminds me of a young Marc Bulger, someone that just, as you look for comparables, he is a young man that has played the position his whole life. He will be an excellent addition to our quarterback room.”
Bulger was a two-time Pro Bowler who started 96 games for the St. Louis Rams from 2002-2009 and he threw for 22,184 yards, 122 touchdowns and 93 interceptions during that time span.
DiNucci on the other hand, completed about half of his throws this preseason and tossed four interceptions, three alone against the Texans.
It has been reported DeNucci and McCarthy are from the same area in Pittsburgh – – which undoubtedly had a lot to do with DeNucci ending up in Dallas. McCarthy’s brother even coached DiNucci in eighth-grade basketball.
Unfortunately in the NFL – – and especially in this case – – it often comes down to “who you know,” and who the team “is familiar with.”
DiNucci ended up playing in three regular-season games for Dallas last season and started one. He turned in super domestic numbers in the process, going 23 for 43 for 219 yards (no touchdowns and no interceptions).
Hardly Bulger’s numbers.
McCarthy additionally inherited both of Dallas’ current QB’s Dak Prescott and Cooper Rush, and he has added nothing but a failed experiment to the QB’s room.
I believe this roster cut tells us a lot. It is not just any roster cut due to the nature of the relationship between McCarthy and DiNucci. I believe this roster cut clearly tells us McCarthy is losing his influence in the Cowboys’ building.
Not to mention the 0-4 preseason has not helped his cause either. Fans always love to talk about how meaningless the preseason is, but I am not so sure how meaningless it was for McCarthy was was coming off a 6-10 record in his first season as the Cowboys’ head coach?
Offensive coordinator Kellen Moore waits in the wings to get the nod as the team’s interim head coach, if McCarthy does not figure out how to jump start this team quickly.
If HBO’s Hard Knocks was any indication of how the players do not buy into McCarthy – – it should not be too long.
Daniel Kelly is a former NFL scout with the New York Jets. He was hired on the regime which featured Bill Parcells, Bill Belichick, Scott Pioli, Mike Tannenbaum, and Dick Haley. He currently writes for Sports Illustrated Detroit Lions and he is a contributing evaluator for Draft Diamonds. For more information about him visit his website at whateverittakesbook.com. He can be followed on Twitter @danielkellybook and his Facebook page is WHATEVER IT TAKES NFL TALK.