Mike McCarthy's motivational tools for Cowboys include sledgehammer, watermelons

Jason Owens
·3 min read

Mike McCarthy’s debut as head coach of the Dallas Cowboys is not going well.

Prior to Sunday’s game against the Minnesota Vikings, the Cowboys were 2-7. So McCarthy dug deep into his motivational toolbox to attempt to fire up his team.

According to NFL Network’s Tom Pelissero, that tool box includes a sledgehammer and “a bunch of watermelons.” He brought them out Saturday night at the team hotel.

If you’re envisioning something resembling a Gallagher performance, well, you’re pretty much spot on.

And if you’re asking yourself, “Who is Gallagher?” He’s a prop comic. This is his schtick:

Wait ... McCarthy did what?

Pelissero broke down the unorthodox coaching technique on Twitter. The gist of the display was to emphasize the team’s goal to “hammer” the ball away from Vikings running back Dalvin Cook.

Let Pelissero explain.

“McCarthy pulls out a sledgehammer — not a prop — a full sledgehammer you can knock a wall down with,” Pelissero said. “And someone rolls in a bunch of watermelons. McCarthy reads the objective — Bam! Smashes the watermelon.

“He goes down the row doing this. The players are roaring. McCarthy’s pants are soaked.”

Before it was over, defensive end DeMarcus Lawrence smashed the watermelon representing Cook.

Cowboys traveled with melons

McCarthy confirmed the melon-smashing party to reporters Monday. He said the Cowboys traveled to Minnesota with the melons after some research into the local winter melon supply.

"We had to actually take our own watermelons with us because it's a little harder to find big watermelons in Minneapolis this time of year than Dallas, from what I was told," McCarthy said, per ESPN. "So a lot of planning goes into that, and most importantly we were able to get it done right and the cleanup was efficient. The hotel was a little concerned there."

Dallas Cowboys head coach Mike McCarthy, center, speaks to the team during NFL football training camp in Frisco, Texas, Tuesday, Aug. 18, 2020. (AP Photo/LM Otero)
Dallas' season has devolved into relying on prop-comic gimmicks for motivation. (AP Photo/LM Otero)

This can’t be a good sign

While it sounds like a lot of fun on a Saturday night, a professional football team relying on prop comic-inspired gimmicks to get up for a game is not a sign of things going well. The Cowboys won on Sunday and came up with a pair of turnovers, which is certainly good news in Dallas.

But the defense was generally as bad as it’s been all season, allowing 28 points and 430 yards, including 115 on the ground to Cook. The Cowboys are now 3-7.

McCarthy is going to need a lot more than produce and heavy tools to pull this season out of the dumpster.

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