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Thread: Dan Quinn Background/Article

  1. #1
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    Dan Quinn Background/Article

    Below is an article from Bob Condotta from this past offseason before Quinn took over the Seattle DC job (when Gus Bradley left).

    Quick summary:

    He is an NJ guy, who was on Mangini's staff here. Seems like an aggressive, well-respected coach.

    However, he seems VERY inexperienced to me. 2 years as DC in florida and 1 as DC in seattle (all 3 stops his defense did real well) is not a lot of time to prepare to be a HC as far as how you will run the whole organization. Also, (and I've brought this up with guys like Roman and even Bill Obrien as well) given how the seattle coaching tree has gotten poached, and how young he is - Im not sure where he would get a staff from as far as DC and OC.

    Seattle Times
    RENTON – In the five-bedroom, colonial-style house the Quinns called home in Morristown, N.J., Peter Quinn always knew where to find his younger brother Dan during football season.

    “He would be staying up watching the New Mexico State-Hawaii game at 2 in the morning figuring out what plays they were running,’’ Peter says of Dan, who by six years is the youngest of six children. “He was always a student of the game like that.’’

    Soon after, Dan Quinn became a teacher of the game, a career choice that surprised absolutely no one, least of all himself.

    “I always knew I wanted to coach,’’ he says.

    And now, at age 42, having steadily climbed the coaching ladder, Dan Quinn is ready for his biggest challenge yet, taking over as defensive coordinator of the Seahawks in a year when the Super Bowl is regarded as a legitimate goal.

    “I’d rather it be that way,’’ Quinn said of the expectations greeting the Seahawks.

    The ink had barely dried on the stories that Gus Bradley was leaving the Seahawks to become the head coach at Jacksonville before Quinn was hired as his replacement — a sign of Quinn’s enthusiasm for the appointment. Quinn’s Seattle hiring came about two hours after Bradley was announced as Jacksonville’s coach.

    “It was really something that I wanted to do,’’ Quinn said.

    Indeed, it was as big of a no-brainer for each side as the timing made it appear. Quinn had served as Seattle’s defensive line coach in 2009 under Jim L. Mora and in 2010, when coach Pete Carroll took over, before leaving to become defensive coordinator at the University of Florida under Will Muschamp.

    Just as significant to Carroll, though, is that Quinn — like Carroll — learned much of what he knows about defense during his days with the San Francisco 49ers, and specifically from longtime San Francisco assistant/defensive coordinator Bill McPherson, whose son Pat is now Seattle’s tight ends coach.

    “I loved Dan when he was here before and knew that if we had an opportunity that he would be the guy that we would like to bring back,’’ Carroll said. “So there really wasn’t a big decision. I had already kind of figured that out from the time we had spent together.’’

    Quinn’s stock only rose during his time away from the Seahawks. He received a lot of credit at Florida for helping revive its defense, which finished fifth in the nation in yards allowed last year and led the team to an 11-2 record. Other than a year as the defensive coordinator at Hofstra in 2000, the two seasons at Florida were the first when Quinn called his own defense, an experience he says has readied him for his new job with the Seahawks.

    “It was important for me,’’ he said. “... just having the experience, kind of leading the entire year as opposed to (coaching) a defensive-line group. Making calls on game day and that type of thing, it was a very valuable time for me.’’

    It was what he’d dreamed of doing for as long as he can remember. His father, Jim, was a baseball player at Northwestern before settling down for a career in insurance and a life as a family man in Morristown, with a population of about 18,000, roughly 30 miles from New York.

    Quinn has four older brothers, most of whom played sports at Morristown High School.

    “We were always a competitive family,’’ saidPeter. “Whiffle ball or whatever it might be.’’

    Football was always big in the house. Peter remembers Dan trying to make like Sam “Bam’’ Cunningham — a running back for the New England Patriots in the ’70s known for jumping over defenders into the end zone — and leap over couches in the house with a football in his arms to score “touchdowns.”

    “We wouldn’t let him,’’ Peter said with a laugh.

    During summers as a kid, Dan often visited the training-camp home of the Giants in nearby Madison — somewhere, he said, he probably still has an autograph from Lawrence Taylor.

    All of that built a love of sports and a desire to coach. “I knew early that this is what I wanted to do,” he said.

    Quinn played defensive line at Morristown High, and then for four years at Salisbury (Md.) State before entering coaching, getting jobs helping coach defense at William & Mary, Virginia Military Institute and Hofstra.

    His big break came after the 2000 season at Hofstra. Two players from the school were playing with the 49ers, including safety Lance Schulters, which helped get Quinn an interview for an entry-level job on the San Francisco staff under coach Steve Mariucci and Mora, the future Seahawks coach who was the 49ers’ defensive coordinator at the time.

    “It was the one totally random chance that they brought me out to interview me for an assistant D-line job,’’ Quinn said. “Just a one-in-a-million chance. I wore Jim Mora out enough that he said, ‘Let’s bring this guy in.’ ’’

    Quinn was given a quality-control job, and two years later was coaching the defensive line. Soon after came stops at the Dolphins, under Nick Saban, and the Jets, under Eric Mangini, before Mora hired him at Seattle in 2009.

    His first Seattle tenure was highlighted by the move of Red Bryant from tackle to end, helping remake the Seahawks defense into one of the best in the NFL.

    “I think the big thing I learned very early is once you knew how to get a player better, they will be invested in you,’’ Quinn said. “That was true early in my time (with the 49ers). Players say, ‘OK, this guy knows what he is doing.’ They want to be around more because it’s their career.’’

    He worked alongside his predecessor Bradley for a year with the Seahawks in 2010 and now takes over a unit that ranked first in the NFL in points allowed in 2012 (15.3 per game).

    Still, Quinn hardly plans to stand pat.

    Specifically, Quinn says the Seahawks will play more aggressively this season, calling on a veteran secondary to play more man-to-man and open up more players to rush the passer.

    “I think that we just have a mindset that we like to play aggressive,’’ he said.

    Linebacker K.J. Wright says that’s a big change.

    “As you can see, we are running a lot of man-to-man coverages, so we are really locking onto guys, making sure we stay tight to them and don’t stay back in zones and let them pick us apart,” Wright said. “So he’s really aggressive with his calls and we are going to be on guys to see who the best defender is.’’

    That’s music to the ears of a Seattle secondary regarded as among the best in the NFL and eager for the chance to be given added responsibility.

    “We definitely like it,’’ said safety Earl Thomas. “We’ve got the personnel to do it and DQ recognizes that and we are going to play to our strengths. And if we get beat, OK, we are going to move on and go to the next play and come back at you. ... Everybody knows what we are going to do. We are going to play man or some type of (cover) three. We don’t really disguise anything. We are just going to get in your face and see what happens.’’

    Quinn’s more aggressive nature on the field, though, is countered by a more analytical approach off it.

    Wright says that where Bradley was “more of a rah-rah type’’ Quinn is “straight to the point. He just tells you what he wants you to do.’’

    Just the way he always envisioned he would.

  2. #2
    Quote Originally Posted by eaglenj View Post
    Wright says that where Bradley was “more of a rah-rah type’’ Quinn is “straight to the point. He just tells you what he wants you to do.’’
    That is probably a key reason why Idzik likes Quinn.

  3. #3
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    He probably is good head coaching material. But he's way to young. Only one year as a defensive coordinator?

  4. #4
    Quote Originally Posted by pdxjets View Post
    He probably is good head coaching material. But he's way to young. Only one year as a defensive coordinator?
    If Idzik thinks he can handle it, then he has my full support. He spent time with him in Seattle, so he must have some idea of his capabilities.

  5. #5
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    Quote Originally Posted by Seth View Post
    If Idzik thinks he can handle it, then he has my full support. He spent time with him in Seattle, so he must have some idea of his capabilities.
    Yes. But we don't know what makes him a good such a good candidate for head coach of an NFL team.

  6. #6
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    If they fire Rex, I will only accept an offensive coach. Firing Rex for a defensive guy is a huge mistake.

  7. #7
    Sounds to me like another Rex Ryan. All defense with no idea how to run an actual team. he needs time to learn more of that imo. If he were hired I hope we keep MM for offense and as asst HC or something. I just think he's going to need it.

    Can't we find someone with a little for depth. someone who knows both offense and defense or someone more experienced. I like Roman.

    Hope Idzik has a master plan or something. We'll see on Black Monday.

  8. #8
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    Please God no

  9. #9
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    If we are going to bring in a guy from the sqwaks, it has to be bevell.

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    So we're gunna either hire a guy that came in to the best situation possible as a DC (Quinn)....Or a guy who does nothing special but is overrated because his offense happens to be on the same team as said defense (Bevell)

    If we have to get rid of Rex, there has to be some big time coach in the waiting like a Jon Gruden.....An unproven commodity, especially one that gets hired simply because Idzik is probably good buddies with him is a disaster waiting to happen

  11. #11
    Quote Originally Posted by King Koopa View Post
    So we're gunna either hire a guy that came in to the best situation possible as a DC (Quinn)....Or a guy who does nothing special but is overrated because his offense happens to be on the same team as said defense (Bevell)

    If we have to get rid of Rex, there has to be some big time coach in the waiting like a Jon Gruden.....An unproven commodity, especially one that gets hired simply because Idzik is probably good buddies with him is a disaster waiting to happen
    I can understand the Quinn is inexperienced argument, but how is Bevell overrated? People keep affirming this point, yet he still calls a very productive offense, and is credited with the development of Wilson.

  12. #12
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    Quote Originally Posted by Seth View Post
    I can understand the Quinn is inexperienced argument, but how is Bevell overrated? People keep affirming this point, yet he still calls a very productive offense, and is credited with the development of Wilson.
    Wilson was a stud from jumpstreet and would have been great with a team like us as well, Can you say Bevell is THE reason for Wilson being good? He was awesome in college, just overlooked because of his height, That's it.....He also has Marshawn Lynch and a stud defense to lean on....One that actually causes turnovers and makes huge plays

    He's not a terrible choice, but is he the BEST candidate out there? Or is he decent but just happens to be good friends with Idzik? I would put money on the latter.....

  13. #13
    Quote Originally Posted by King Koopa View Post
    Wilson was a stud from jumpstreet and would have been great with a team like us as well, Can you say Bevell is THE reason for Wilson being good? He was awesome in college, just overlooked because of his height, That's it.....He also has Marshawn Lynch and a stud defense to lean on....One that actually causes turnovers and makes huge plays

    He's not a terrible choice, but is he the BEST candidate out there? Or is he decent but just happens to be good friends with Idzik? I would put money on the latter.....
    You can't affirm such a thing, it's far too speculative to assume he would thrive anywhere. Regardless if it's warranted, Bevell still deserves some credit for Wilson's success. Furthermore, how is having the right pieces in order a knock on him? If anything, it assures ourselves that he knows how to run a offense when the pieces are in place.

  14. #14
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    Quote Originally Posted by Seth View Post
    You can't affirm such a thing, it's far too speculative to assume he would thrive anywhere. Regardless if it's warranted, Bevell still deserves some credit for Wilson's success. Furthermore, how is having the right pieces in order a knock on him? If anything, it assures ourselves that he knows how to run a offense when the pieces are in place.
    Seattle's offense is really nothing special, it is efficient but far from a juggernaut.....How would that offensive unit be paired up with Dallas or Chicago's defense this season???

    Wilson was always a great player, I watched him at NC State and Wisconsin...Admittedly he came in to a great situation, but I really think he would have been a good player anywhere....

    I don't want to knock Bevell but there's a high probability that he is not the best candidate out there.....IF he gets hired by us, it's more about his relationship with Idzik than anything else....Doesn't mean he will suck but let's be real here....Don't really see how that is debatable

  15. #15
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    I don't think replacing Rex with another defensive minded head coach is a mistake. Replacing Rex with an inexperienced head coach is the bigger issue.

    We would be back with Rex in year one all over again, and there are too many impatient know-it-all Jets fans that wouldn't let that coach develop.

    Quinn could be the next legendary HOF coach in the making, but nobody wants to let that coach grow, learn, aspire, and achieve. Just look at Rex.

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