Seattle’s Super Bowl only delays Falcons’ likely hiring of Quinn

Dan Quinn, here with Seattle head coach Pete Carroll, should still be Falcons’ top choice. (AP photo)

Dan Quinn, here with Seattle head coach Pete Carroll, will interview again with Falcons as soon as Monday. (AP photo)

Dan Quinn, here with Seattle head coach Pete Carroll, should still be Falcons’ top choice. (AP photo)

Even if the Falcons have to wait two weeks to officially hire their next head coach, it doesn’t mean they really have to wait two weeks to … well, unofficially hire their next head coach.

Seattle’s improbable, 28-22 come-from-behind overtime win over Green Bay in the NFC championship Sunday means the Seahawks will have a chance to win their second straight Super Bowl. But that won’t stop the Falcons from interviewing Seattle defensive coordinator Dan Quinn for a second time, likely Monday, and pretty much closing the deal.

They waited this long for Quinn. They can wait two more weeks.

Let me reiterate two things about the NFL’s interview process for potential head coaches in this situation:

• Quinn can’t sign a contract with the Falcons, but the team can interview him and, in theory, come to a wink-wink, nudge-nudge deal.

• There’s nothing precluding Falcons’ ownership and management from speaking to Quinn’s agent and, in theory, coming to a wink-wink, nudge-nudge deal.

I know. That’s a lots of winks and nudges.

But it’s difficult to imagine anything derailing this hiring. There have been seven NFL job openings since the end of the regular season. Five of those teams already have hired coaches: Buffalo (Rex Ryan), Chicago (John Fox), the New York Jets (Todd Bowles), Oakland (Jack Del Rio) and San Francisco (Jim Tomsula).

The Falcons and Denver are the only two teams with vacancies. The Broncos appear set on hiring Baltimore offensive coordinator Gary Kubiak, a former Denver assistant and close friend of general manager/executive vice president John Elway. That means there’s no competition for Quinn, unless another team suddenly fires its coach.

A contingent of Falcons’ executives appeared set to fly to Seattle Sunday night to interview Quinn and, had the Seahawks lost, and then likely would have brought him back on owner Arthur Blank’s jet soon after. So in the end, all the Seahawks’ win likely means if Quinn won’t be on the return flight.

Meanwhile, a quick word about Sunday’s game: Seattle’s defense kept the Seahawks in the game, despite four Russell Wilson interceptions and five turnovers overall. Seattle: 1) Forced the Packers to kick field goals after consecutive drives stalled at the one-yard line early in the game; 2) held Green Bay to six points in its last eight possessions (two field goals, five punts, one interception); 3) limited quarterback Aaron Rodgers to 19-of-34 passing for 174 yards, one touchdown and two interceptions; limited the Packers to 306 yards in offense.

No, Quinn can’t bring members of that Seattle defense with him. But he’s clearly doing something right.

UPDATE: There are multiple reports, including from our D. Orlando Ledbetter, that the Falcons will hire Kyle Shanahan as their offensive coordinator, assuming the Quinn deal is finalized. Shanahan, son of Mike Shanahan, will feel like he stepped into a dream after having to work with Johnny Manziel in Cleveland this season, and to some degree also being in the middle of the Robert Griffin III-Mike Shanahan mess in Washington.

Shanahan has been an offensive coordinator for seven years — two in Houston, four in Washington and one in Cleveland. A full accounting of how his offenses have fared can be found at Pro Football Reference. But in short, they’ve ranked 3rd, 4th, 18th, 16th, 5th, 9th and 24th in total yardage. Far less impressive were his offense’s scoring rankings: 17th, 10th, 25th, 26th, 4th, 23rd, 27th.

The Falcons were believed to have interest in Denver offensive coordinator Adam Gase, but he apparently also has a chance to replace Kubiak in Baltimore (assuming Kubiak gets the Denver job) or go to Chicago with John Fox.

A recent writer’s dozen from the digital jukebox
— AJC: Oddsmaker says Braves’ win total will be ‘low 70s’ (with reader poll)
— MyAJC: Braves’ moves carry Coppolella’s fingerprints
— AJC: There goes Evan Gattis as Braves take another big hit
— AJC: Quinn was tabbed as ‘Next Great Coach’ but can Falcons get him?
— AJC: UPDATE: Bowles goes to Jets but if Falcons get Quinn it won’t matter
— AJC: Falcons should talk to John Fox before making decision on Quinn, Bowles
— AJC: Rex Ryan going to Buffalo — and that’s not bad news for Falcons
— AJC: Nick Saban, the mercenary, takes on ex-Bulldog Jonathan Taylor
— MyAJC: Falcons’ backdrop not comforting for coaching search
— AJC: Falcons’ changes: Pioli’s role increases, so what does this mean for Dimitroff?
— AJC: How’s this scenario: Falcons vs. Giants and Mike Smith’s defense in 2015?
— MyAJC: Smoltz just wanted to survive, but he did so much more
— AJC John Smoltz, a Hall of Famer on many levels, gets the call
— AJC: Hall of Fame: Smoltz, 7 others checked on my ballot
— AJC: ROSE BOWL: Oregon mocks FSU, Winston with “No means No” chant
— MyAJC: ROSE BOWL: After 29 straight wins, Florida State morphs into grease fire

 

 

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69 comments
Mery Eva
Mery Eva

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SmyrnaGeorgia
SmyrnaGeorgia

Going to be interesting to see how Quinn takes to coming from probably the best defense in the NFL to the worst- I would bet the farm that the first round pick will be the best pass rusher available. 

I admire OC Shanahan for demanding release from his Browns contract because he was told to play Johnny Football before he was ready-  looks like he was right. 


Front office "shake-up" looks like nothing much was shaken up at all to me. Gotta hope that TD has learned something and does better drafting in the lower rounds than he has in the recent past.

buellerbuellerbueller
buellerbuellerbueller

Reporters are "tampering" with fans- where is my shield?  Seriously,  I'm all in for Dan Quinn, but let's hope this joker of an OC can get it right when he arrives.  I assume Nolan will be out.    We need a lift in spite of the PSL sticker shock.    

SportsTopFan
SportsTopFan

C O N G R A T U L A T I O N S   to the Seattle Seahawks and New England Patriots  !!!


Super Bowl #49 should be a GREAT football game between two Super (14-4) teams.


MILLIONS of eyeballs will be nationwide and worldwide will be watching..

Big Wally
Big Wally

Hey Schultz, just FYI, there is a basketball team here called the Atlanta Hawks. They are really good and having a great year.  I'm not sure your aware of them, you seem consumed about losers like the Falcons and Braves.

atlfanman
atlfanman

I don’t know if Dan Quinn is going to be a good head coach or not. Anyone who tells you they know for sure are more than psychic they are full of bull. This is what I do know. Quinn is the Defensive Coordinator of the Super Bowl Champions who are back in the Super Bowl to defend their title. I know the Seahawks have the number one defense in the league. I know he has seen up close and personal how a championship team is ran, how talent is evaluated and how competition in camp makes everyone better. We all noticed how the Seahawks got rid of Percy Harvin early in the season because despite of all of his talent he was not worth the drama. We saw how the Seahawks, like many other teams dealt with injuries, but still survive to win in the most challenging division in football. Hopefully, he has learned a few things while with the Seahawks and can pass them over to the Falcons.


Very surprised that Kyle Shanahan was chosen for the OC but we will just have to wait and see. If you look hard enough you will find imperfections in every coaching candidate.

LMO
LMO

I think I'd be estatic IF we were getting Dan Quinn and whoever is picking the groceries in Seattle.  Isn't their GM an ex Falcon's executive under Thomas or am I confusing with someone else.

CoronaGT
CoronaGT

@LMO  John Schneider is the GM at Seattle.  He has never worked for the Falcons.  He previously worked for the Packers, Chiefs, Seahawks, Redskins, and Packers (again) before returning to the Seahawks in January 2010.


Agreed, the head coach isn't going to have much success here as long as the grocery shoppers are the same.  As long as the Falcons are stuck with Dimwitrof and Pioli, their groceries will continue to be inferior.

notPlanB
notPlanB

My reason for liking Dan Quinn is he is a defensive coach. That's where we need help. Don't know why MS couldn't do it. Quinn will also have 2 SB's as experience. He has been around the mindset of extremely good def. players. Is it possible that Gus Bradley or Pete Carroll built this great defense? Sure, but if that's true, you hope he learned from his experience. We can't hire Pete Carroll. We only hope our new HC will be the greatest ever. How many times does that happen? Hardly ever but I understand why we want to give him a try.

reckingball
reckingball

@notPlanB "Mike Smith couldn't do it", because of a lack of talent in the player personnel dept.

Dirtyb8
Dirtyb8

@reckingball so by that logic, you are confident that Mike Smith would have been able to coach up Seattle's defense full of 4th, 5th and 6th rounders (even undrafted) and guide them to 2 super bowls?

RogerHenslee
RogerHenslee

@Dirtyb8 @reckingball  But those Seattle 4th, 5th and 6th rounders are much better than were they were drafted. The Falcons could draft Sponge Bob in the first round and does than really make him a first round talent? Not taking up for M Smith, but he had nothing to work with....Dimitroff shoulders as much blame as Smith for the debacle and got a pass.

Smiths defenses with Jacksonville(that didn't have bad personnel bad but didn't have overwhelming talent) were VERY highly ranked most of the time he was there....just saying! 

Hopefully Quinn will get the ATL defense to be at least respectable and finally feared

LMO
LMO

same dudes still doing the grocery shopping.  Mike Smith guided one of the best Defenses in Jacksonville when he was the coordinator there before coming here at HC.  If you don't have the players to run your scheme...then same trash, different players.  I've never seen coaching staffs built backwards..coordinators first and HC last.  Kyle Shannahan creates prolific offenses wherever he's gone.  Sigh... at least we have the Hawks

peanutgallery
peanutgallery

@LMO Price you pay if you waiting to hire a coordinator on a Super Bowl-bound team.


If you wait until Quinn is officially hired as HC the only coordinators left are the ones who didn't get jobs elsewhere. 

fresh1
fresh1

There is a question as to what impact the quality of Seattle's defensive personnel had on Coach Quinn's success.  A bigger question is whether the defense was truly HIS as Pete Carroll is a defensive HC and we can assume that his footprint is all over the Seattle defense.  The Falcons suffer from a dearth of talent on the defensive side of the ball, specifically the front 7.  You can't coach "talent."  Hopefully, this gets addressed.  With all the talent the Falcons have on offense, it would have been nice to see someone at OC with great schemes that can take advantage of the talent we have, as opposed to another NFL "family" hire.  The "reorganized" front office appears to be a recipe for disaster - see Atlanta Hawks with too many cooks in the kitchen.  Let's hope Mr. Blank does not become a Jerry Jones - type owner, which he has not shown himself to be.  Streamline the front office, get 1 good GM and talent evaluator and let them do their jobs. 

peanutgallery
peanutgallery

Disappointing that some people either want loud-mouth braggarts or coaches with the proper skin tone.


Quinn has coached a defense to a Super Bowl win and is back in the Super Bowl this year. Seattle's D held the Packers in check despite 4 interceptions by Wilson. 


Before people start yipping about Seattle's personnel there are plenty of coaches who have been unable to maximize the abilities of the players on a team.

DarlaLewis
DarlaLewis

I'm not that sold on Quinn, what are they basing this hire on? The fact that he's surrounded by three or four hall-a famers on the team he's coach. Who's in charge of the defense? Quinn or is he going to hire an defensive coordinator. We all know the Seahawks are in two super-bowls because of the people the front office brought in. Kyle Shanahan going to be the offensive coordinator, this reeks of a lily white coaching staff with no black folks in any decision making positions. You go Author Blank....

Riseuppppppp2015
Riseuppppppp2015

@DarlaLewis so because the head coach and OC are not black you don't like the decision. Lol at least I get an early laugh this morning.. Im sure you want Mike Vick back QB too  

notPlanB
notPlanB

@DarlaLewis  Seems to be ok to use adjectives like 'lily' for whites but don't dare use an adjective for blacks. I'm getting a little tired of this.

notPlanB
notPlanB

@DarlaLewis  Also, according to the census, blacks make up such a small percentage of the population that they will not have many coaches in the NFL. That is unless some people were hiding on census taking day. How about getting the percentages correct for NBA players.

noTbagger
noTbagger

@DarlaLewis  Coaching staff is too white, too black... the QB has been both black and white.. When will folks put away their racial agendas and pull for the team no matter what the complexion???   

Dirtyb8
Dirtyb8

@DarlaLewis Are you dumb? I honestly don't see what skin color has to do with coaching. And you are not sold on Dan Quinn? Well did you know Seattle's defense is mostly made up of 4th, 5th and 6th rounders? Do you honestly think players picked that late in the draft could perform at such a high level without being coached up? During Mike Smith, even our first round players didn't live up to their expectations let alone beyond 4th rounders. That is called piss poor coaching. Think about it before you post.

rockinreel
rockinreel

@Mora-less-Petrino Good Link.  Packer fans are actually upset with Aaron Rodgers and want the, HC, OC, and the QB to go because they can't win a playoff game.  Hilarious.  You listen to ESPN and Aaron Rodgers walks on water and does other magic tricks.  Who the heck can they replace him with?

Mora-less-Petrino
Mora-less-Petrino

@PalmBeachFalcon @Mora-less-Petrino The Falcons - Lions game that was played in London was another epic implosion!

The playoff butt stompings the Falcons took from the Giants and Packers would rank high on my list of bad losses. Colts fans got a dose of that yesterday.

Credible Commentor
Credible Commentor

All of this is not gonna make a difference either way, until the Falcons shave off enough $$ to get more players with passion, & the tin man qb a new heart after banking in on that guaranteed messiah contract

rockinreel
rockinreel

@Credible Commentor MR actually started running out of the pocket the last half of the season,  when he usually folded like a piece of fragile bread at the sight of a defender honing down on him.

I hated MR for dropping to the ground in the pocket like a scared toddler. ...but now I commend him for improving drastically the last 8 games and manning up.

DawgDadII
DawgDadII

Hmmm. As of right now Dan Quinn has 67 fewer wins as a head coach than Mike Smith has. Sixty-seven. Sixty-seven. Chew on that, kool-aid drinkers.

PalmBeachFalcon
PalmBeachFalcon

@DawgDadII  He has also blown fewer games with poor clock management, and blown fewer leads by taking the air out of the ball.  He's a nice guy though

rockinreel
rockinreel

@PalmBeachFalcon @DawgDadII He's also a poor judge of talent.  The entire world new we had two running backs better than SJ, but he couldn't man-up and hurt a veteran running backs feelings.  SJ should have been our goal line back with his power.  Let the two elusive backs make big plays for us. MS kept saying we need to get Antone Smith the ball more, but still only used him about 4-5 times a game before he got hurt.   This fan base never understood it.  Good riddance.

notPlanB
notPlanB

@DawgDadII  Mike K at Duke basketball had 998 fewer wins before he started as a HC. MS's shortfalls, player development. WPP, clock mgmt., 1/2 time adjustments, sitting on leads and bringing in players and coaches from the Jags.

AldenS
AldenS

@DawgDadII No one else wants Smitty as HC, why don't you chew on that?

johnnyquest
johnnyquest

I'm still waiting on that all-tingly feeling so that i can rush right out and put down my *yawn* PSL money...puhleez.  Anybody else rather play wiffle ball than watch this train wreck franchise self-immolate?

tyger
tyger

Seattle HBCU's connection


Tavares Jackson QB Alabama State

Ricardo Rocket Lockett WR  FVSU


Seahawks doing something right...


www.hbcuclassics.com


Not to mention last living decendant of Powhatan:

QB Russell Wilson  Pocohantas Island, VA.

LakeDawg
LakeDawg

If Quinn is smart he will wait on a better opportunity. Working for Blank is a no win situation. Falcons are circling the drain.

UGA76
UGA76

@LakeDawg  IF he takes the job, I hope he has the sense to request the Falcon's hire a qualified GM and get rid of the 3 Stooges. To win he will need at least 4 new offensive starters and 3 new DL, 2 new LB (one that can cover and one that can rush the passer) and an another DB. 

Ihateorange
Ihateorange

@LakeDawg  Agree but there are no other opportunities (at least this year) - everyone has hired their man.

notPlanB
notPlanB

@rockinreel @UGA76 @LakeDawg  I've got to agree. Toilolo is not the guy. I liked Mickey Schuler better than Toilolo. Look around some small schools for the 6'5" 250 lb guys with basketball experience.

LakeDawg
LakeDawg

@UGA76 @LakeDawg


The head coach needs autonomy over player acquisition (or a good GM), but will never get it under Blank. Blank is another Jerry Jones.....he has a huge ego and wants to be his own GM. He didn't fire Dimitroff because Dimitroff is his puppet.

noTbagger
noTbagger

@LakeDawg @UGA76  Blank is NOT another Jerry Jones.  He's involved with operations as many owners are, but he does not tell his players to call him "coach" and doesn't call plays and interfere like Jones does.  Wrong analogy.

LakeDawg
LakeDawg

@noTbagger @LakeDawg @UGA76 Maybe he doesn't go to the extent of JJ, but give him time. He is similar in principle if not in style. Its an apt analogy.