Jerry Jones: No plans to add to Cowboys Ring of Honor in 2023


DALLAS (105.3 The Fan) - Jimmy Johnson is long-past due to be inducted into the Cowboys Ring of Honor, but it appears that he'll have to wait another year for Cowboys owner and general manager Jerry Jones to keep his word.

Jones told Johnson on live television prior to the 2021 Hall of Fame Game that the legendary head coach would be enshrined in the Ring of Honor. But, in an interview with NBC 5's Newy Scruggs in training camp last year, Jones said it was his decision when Johnson got into the Ring of Honor and added that the decision isn't "all tailored around whether Jimmy is sniveling or not."

While speaking with reporters at the team's headquarters at The Star Monday, Jones was asked once again if he had any designs to add members to the Cowboys' exclusive club, to which Jones said he did not, according to Jon Machota and other reporters.

Johnson last spoke publicly about his desire to get into the Ring of Honor in November 2022 but admitted that he had no idea when or if that day would come.

“I’d be honored. The Dallas Cowboys are a big part of my life, so I take great pride in that. Jerry has told me a half dozen times he’s gonna do it, but I have no control over that. That’s up to Jerry," Johnson said while promoting his new book, 'Swagger,' on Shan and RJ on 105.3 The Fan. 'When and if he decides to put me in, I would be honored. But if he decides he doesn't want to do it, I'd understand."

When asked if he had any idea why he hadn't been inducted into the Ring of Honor yet, Johnson said he wasn't sure.

"No, not really. It's like my relationship with Jerry. It's a day-to-day thing," a chuckling Johnson said.

Johnson won two Super Bowls as the head coach of the Cowboys in 1993 and 1994 before he and Jones had a falling out, leading to his departure from the organization. But despite their differences, Johnson still has strong feelings for Jones.

"I started the chapter off with Jerry saying, 'people don't understand our relationship' simply for the reason (that) 'I don't understand our relationship.' If I saw Jerry today, I would imagine we would both smile and hug each other and say, 'well, it was a great run.' Then, how would he feel two days later? I don't know," Johnson said. "I was very complimentary of Jerry (in the book). I think he has done a great job for the NFL. One of the great owners in the NFL. He's made every owner in the NFL a lot of money. He's passionate. He works hard. He loves the Cowboys. As far as our relationship, I never know. But I've got great admiration for Jerry."

Jones was driven to tears on multiple occasions during the team’s annual training camp introductory press conference last year, most of all by memories of his football divorce from coach Johnson, who was inducted into the Pro Football Hall of Fame last year.

“My role here, it was my job to keep it together and should have had deference to something that was working good, those are the things that come to my mind," Jones said, reflective on Johnson’s departure from the team in 1994 following the second Super Bowl win.

“I've never been able to know,” Jones said, “why I f—-ed it up."
The truth of what happened is far more complex than a NSFW soundbite - one of a few that Jones, 78, dropped when talking about how much some level of football normalcy in a COVID time means to him, how much he desperately wants to win a Super Bowl, and how much he believes in but he labels his own “naïveté.”

“It’s a beautiful world and better world to be naive than skeptical and negative,” said Jones, the billionaire who has often stated that is “naive” positivity is a key to his success.

By 1994, of course, the Jones-Johnson relationship was something short of positive. Johnson thought the owner undeservedly wanted credit; Jones thought his coach was disloyal.

They were probably both right.

Johnson out and he got his way, to be replaced by Barry Switzer, who Jones said came to Dallas initially not understanding there was a vacancy.

Jones said Switzer’s first intention was to get the three old friends together to talk it out.

Jones quoting Switzer: “I wanted to get both you a—holes on this couch and ask you how you could f—k this up.”

Jones and Johnson are together again in Canton as the coach enters the Hall of Fame, as Jones did in 2017.

“We had a great run of it,” Jones said, choking back more tears. “He’s a great coach, and I’m proud to have him as a friend and proud to have the times that we had. We just had a great experience.”

Hopefully, there are more great times to come.

Featured Image Photo Credit: USA Today Images