"This was not an easy decision because of how highly we regard Scott Linehan as a football coach and as a person," head coach Jason Garrett said in a statement. "He and I had some really positive, substantive, and open discussions which took place in the latter part of this week, and we ultimately agreed that it would be in the best interest of all of the parties involved if we were to make a change at this position."
Linehan spent five years on Garrett's staff, the last four as offensive coordinator. The former St. Louis Rams head coach faced heavy criticism at times when the Cowboys' offense sputtered, as fans in Dallas often pleaded for Linehan to install schemes that would take greater advantage of quarterback Dak Prescott's mobility.
The Cowboys finished the regular season 22nd in the NFL in total offense and scoring offense, though they did improve offensively following the acquisition of wideout Amari Cooper.
"Scott has had an incredibly positive impact on our football team," Garrett added. "He has been instrumental in the development and success of a significant number of our veteran and younger players. He is an outstanding football coach, a great friend, and we wish him and his family nothing but the absolute best moving forward."
Despite their inconsistencies on offense, the Cowboys won the NFC East and advanced to the divisional round of the playoffs before falling to the Los Angeles Rams.