LEFTOVERS: Cowboys’ wagon train bound for nowhere

In the wake of the Dallas Cowboys’ collapse in Sunday’s crushing 37-36 loss to the Green Bay Packers, owner Jerry Jones waxed philosophical on a Dallas radio station.

Answering a question about the Washington Redskins, who are owned by his close pal Dan Snyder, Jones compared the trials and tribulations of an NFL season to life on an Old West wagon train:

“Barry Switzer, our coach, used to tell the team, ‘I’m your wagon master, we’re back in the covered wagon days, we’re going to California. We’ve got to cross the Mississippi River to get there. A lot of you are gonna die. We’re gonna have new faces as we go along the way, we’re gonna burn some of these wagons for firewood, float the Mississippi with others. This train is gonna get to California. I’m gonna try to be on it; I hope you’re on it.’ ”

We can appreciate the metaphor. Like the pioneers, the Cowboys think it’s insane to be out there fighting for their lives when winter hits.

We’re guessing wagon master Jason Garrett will die soon from dysentery, Dez Bryant will leave the train before the end of the trail, and Tony Romo flawlessly will guide the group for a while before outlaws inevitably intercept him.

Amid the carnage, Jones, who has had his share of new faces along the way, surely will survive in his luxury stagecoach, where he’ll continue to pick and choose which passengers can join him on the road to nowhere.

In other words, he has no intention of stepping down as his team’s general manager.

“It’s often said that, why don’t I get someone to be the GM? Why don’t I get someone to pick the players?” Jones said in Monday’s interview. “Well, who in the world do you think that person … when they walk through the door and say, ‘We want to get this player or we want to pay this player,’ what in the world do you think I’m going to do?

“I’m going to sit down, and I’m going to go through it, and I’m going to say, ‘Show me the player. Show me everything about the player before I write the check.’

“Well, rather than have that happen, I get involved in it and know everything about the players before they get to the door. That, if you’ve got the time to do it, that’s a better way to do it.”

Clearly, Jerry. That’s why the brilliant strategy has produced one playoff win in the past 17 seasons.

■ THE JETERSBURG ADDRESS — According to the New York Post, Derek Jeter has a strict “no cameras or phones” rule at his 30,000-square-foot Florida mansion, dubbed “St. Jetersburg” by locals.

The Yankees captain reportedly has a basket in the foyer of his home where all guests are expected to put their phones upon entering.

“He points and says, ‘Phones go there,’ so no one can take pictures inside his home,” a source said.

The accomplished ladies man probably has another basket in the foyer for his female guests that he points at and says, “Clothes go there.”

No truth to the rumor that there’s a hole in the wall where former Yankee Chuck Knoblauch fired his phone, completely missing the basket.



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