FRISCO, Texas – After interviewing the vacant head coaches of the Chicago Bears, Denver Broncos, Minnesota Vikings, Miami Dolphins and New York Giants, defense coordinator Dan Quinn returns to the Dallas Cowboys, sources Adam Schefter and Dianna Russini said.
A source told Schefter that Quinn withdrew his name from the Bears’ job, which went to former Cowboys assistant and Indianapolis Colts defensive coordinator Matt Eberflus, according to sources. Earlier Thursday, a source said the Broncos selected Green Bay Packers offensive coordinator Nathaniel Hackett as their head coach.
Quinn became a sought-after candidate for help in reversing the Cowboys’ defense in 2021, a year after it allowed a franchise record of 473 points. The Cowboys finished 19th in allowed yards per. match, seventh in points per. match and led the NFL in takeaways with 34.
Quinn helped develop rookie linebacker Micah Parsons and sophomore cornerback Trevon Diggs into All-Pro and Pro Bowl picks. Parsons led the Cowboys in sacks by 13 and is a favorite to become the NFL’s defensive rookie of the year, and Diggs led the NFL in interceptions by 11, making a Cowboys record.
Quinn had a 43-42 record with the Atlanta Falcons from 2015 to ’20, leading the team to the Super Bowl in 2016 only to see a 28-3 lead in the third quarter disappear in an overtime loss to the New England Patriots.
Quinn, who is still being paid by the Atlanta Falcons, indicated late in the regular season that he would not take a job just to take a job.
“I think I did not come here to look at what my next job would be,” Quinn said. “I wanted to get in here and have fun and hopefully kick ass and make an impact … If those moments come, I’ll be ready for them if the right scenario arose, but honestly I’m having fun. Right here with that here crew and go after it. It’s there, my mind is, it’s there, my heart is. I do not spend a lot of time thinking about down the road or what’s going to happen. I just like to be in the moment with the guys. “
Quinn is the second key employee the Cowboys have been able to keep in the fold since their season ended. Vice President of Player Staff Will McClay signed a contract extension that took him off the teams’ lists for general manager openings. Offensive coordinator Kellen Moore has also interviewed for several head coach jobs, but he is also expected to stay with the Cowboys.
Head coach Mike McCarthy is also expected to return for a third season, though owner and general manager Jerry Jones last week, while speaking at 105.3 The Fan in Dallas, was put off when asked if McCarthy would return. When Sean Payton walked away from the New Orleans Saints this week, it has only heightened speculation about McCarthy’s future given Jones’ affinity with Payton, a former Dallas assistant under Bill Parcells.