The Dallas Cowboys have finally ended the tenure of head coach Jason Garrett after nine years at the helm, with the search already underway to find his replacement.
It brings to an end a strange week when Dallas have been interviewing prospective new head coaches such as Marvin Lewis and Mike McCarthy without releasing an official decision on Garrett's future.
Garrett was a much-loved figure among the team, especially with owner Jerry Jones, but he has continually failed to get 'America's Team' into and then winning in the play-offs.
With an overall 85-67 record as Cowboys head coach, Garrett has led Dallas to just five play-off games and holds a 2-3 record in those post-season encounters.
Despite starting the season with a 6-3 record and playing in the poor NFC East, Garrett could not get Dallas into the play-offs this season as the Philadelphia Eagles got in, and that latest failure has ultimately cost him his job.
Garrett has not technically been fired, but with his current contract expiring on January 14 he has now been informed that he will not get a new deal as Dallas finally decide to go in a different direction.
"We are extremely grateful to Jason Garrett for his more than 20 years of service to the Dallas Cowboys as a player, assistant coach and head coach," Cowboys owner and general manager Jerry Jones said in a statement.
"His level of commitment, character and dedication to this organization has been outstanding at every stage of his career.
"His tenure of leadership will be characterized by his ability to produce teams that always played with great effort, emotion and passion, and he represented our organization with great pride, loyalty and respect.
"Jason Garrett's legacy with the Dallas Cowboys will always be that of someone who strived for greatness every day that he walked through the door, and as someone who instilled the virtues of enthusiasm, hard work and appreciation for the profession in all of the men who played with him and for him.
"He is, and always will remain, a cherished member of the Dallas Cowboys family, and his contributions to the organization are greatly appreciated."
Former Green Bay Packers boss McCarthy and former Cincinnati Bengals head coach Lewis have already been interviewed about the position, with Dallas looking for a proven NFL coach with experience.
McCarthy seems the early favourite after his interviewed extended over into a second day, and he's a proven winner with Green Bay after leading them to a Super Bowl victory in 2010 - ironically staged in the Cowboys' new stadium.
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