The recently-fired Cowboys coach gave his first lengthy interview since becoming a recently-fired Cowboys coach. In what was either a poor choice of words or a complete inability to understand football, he compared himself to that most legendary of Dallas coaches.
Phillips went on the radio in Virginia, and was asked whether he'd take a defensive coordinator job if it was offered:
Well, I would. I just think the perception is, once you're fired that you're not a very good coach and that's...it happened to me at Buffalo; we were 29-19 in Buffalo. Once I was fired there, I couldn't get a head coaching job because they thought I wasn't a good enough coach. They didn't look at my record; they just said, "Oh gosh, he's fired so we got to get somebody else."
It took me a long time to get another head coaching job and we went 34-22, which is pretty good. I went out with the same winning percentage as Tom Landry, so I don't feel bad about my head coaching career but I think they're going to look at me more as a coordinator and that's fine with me. I just want to coach.
OK. Lot to deal with here. Let's start with a little fact-checking: Tom Landry had a career winning percentage of .607; Phillips was .579 for his career, and .621 with the Cowboys. So yes, I guess if you want to get technical, Wade Phillips was a better coach than Tom Landry.
Except he's not. This is Wade Phillips. It's impossible to find a photo of the man in which he looks anything but befuddled. He's a whopping 1-2 in playoff games with Dallas, with two division titles. Landry, on the other hand, has 14 division championships, five conference championships and two Super Bowls. Sure, he had 29 seasons to do it; but that's kind of the point.
Landry had 20 consecutive winning seasons; Phillips wasn't able to get to four. And before we get into the usual discussion of how much or little success and failure are due to the coach, Jason Garrett has gone 2-0 with the exact same players.
2-0? By Wade Phillips's reckoning, Jason Garrett is the greatest football coach of all time!