OXNARD, California — Cowboys owner Jerry Jones is ready for some football, opening the annual "state of the team" news conference in Oxnard Saturday with this pronouncement: "There’s been a lot of talk this off-season by our organization, but now it’s time to get down to business."
Business hasn't been good in Cowboy-ville for years, though.
They've missed out on the last three post seasons, including a pair of 8-8 campaigns under head coach Jason Garrett.
This off-season Cowboys quarterback Tony Romo said he didn't feel like and 8-8 quarterback; Garrett's take was a bit more practical.
"We are who we are," said Garrett, "We are what we are up to this point, but at some point in your life you have to let the past go — whether has been great... good... or mediocre... or not so good. You focus on learning from those experiences and getting better and taking full advantage of the opportunity in front of you."
Romo will be under a watchful eye as he begins camp. The last time he threw passes in a fully organized team setting was the Cowboys season-ending loss to the Washington Redskins. He had off-season surgery to remove a cyst from his back.
Garrett said he will be in constant communication with Romo to make sure his "pitch count" is where it needs to be.
“One of the challenges for Tony when you have a back injury is, it's hard for you to actually stay in the shape you want to be in," Garrett explained. "Really proud of how he's worked since he' been running and doing all the things he needs to do. He looks great. He looks lean to me."
Jones also tried to cool off the seat Garrett occupies, saying it would be a mistake to think Garrett would have to earn a playoff berth to secure his job after 2013 campaign.
"If you're in close here, you see how Jason is responding to obviously unsatisfactory times, and I can tell you first-hand that's impressive," Jones said. "I like that as far as looking ahead at the future."
Garrett's entering the third year of a four-year contract.
"It is not what is implied when you say, 'Well, this is an Armageddon year for him.' It is not what with me," Jones said.
That's what Jerry Jones is saying on day one of training camp, and we all know the owner reserves the right to change his mind... especially when it comes to the employment of the head coach.
Watch News 8 at 6 and News 8 at 10 for a full report from Cowboys training camp.