This past Friday, The Washington Commanders announced the hiring of Dan Quinn as their new head coach.
Managing Partner Josh Harris conducted an extensive search following the dismissal of Head Coach Ron Rivera for both a new General Manager and Head Coach.
In mid-January, the team hired Adam Peters as the new GM. Peters had previously been an Assistant GM with the San Francisco 49ers, spending four years as the team's VP of Player Personnel.
Quinn, meanwhile, comes over to Washington after a stint as the Dallas Cowboys defensive coordinator.
"My partners and I entered this offseason intent on hiring elite candidates to shape the next chapter of Commanders football and I believe we did just that…first with Adam Peters and now by welcoming the highly respected Dan Quinn as our head coach," Harris said in a statement on Saturday. “Dan has rightfully earned a reputation as one of the NFL’s top defensive minds…by adding such a respected, accomplished and determined leader as head coach, we’ve taken another important step in our mission of delivering a championship-caliber team to our fans.”
Quinn has been a coach in the NFL since 2001, with a brief stop as the defensive coordinator at the University of Florida for two seasons in 2011-2012.
In 2013, he was hired as the DC for the Seattle Seahawks, where he led the ‘Legion of Boom’ and one of the best defenses in NFL history. They won a Super Bowl in his first season there in 2013, losing another the next year in 2014.
Following the 2014 season, Quinn got his first NFL head coaching gig with the Atlanta Falcons, where he remained from 2015-2020.
Quinn went 43-42 in Atlanta and was fired in 2020 after an 0-5 start.
In his second season there, he led the Falcons to the Super Bowl and had a 28-3 lead over the Patriots before falling in overtime, 34-28.
The following year, Atlanta made the playoffs again before losing to the Eagles in the Divisional Round.
Quinn’s Falcons never returned to the playoffs and he was let go less than three years later.
For the last three years, Quinn has led the Dallas Cowboys defense, a group that has consistently been one of the best defenses in the NFL.
If Quinn can bring that defensive prowess to Washington and revamp the Commanders defense after finishing dead last in yards given up per game and points allowed per game, the attention can shift to the offense and building a future, potentially through a top draft pick.
Just days after Quinn’s hiring, former Cardinals Head Coach Kliff Kingsbury was announced as the new Commanders offensive coordinator.
The 44 year old Kingsbury famously coached Patrick Mahomes at Texas Tech before taking the Cardinals job in 2019, and was fired following the 2022 season.
He spent last year as a senior offensive analyst at USC, working with the presumed top pick in the 2024 NFL Draft, Caleb Williams.
Washington currently holds the #2 pick in the 2024 Draft.
Might it make sense to move up to the top spot and take Caleb Williams and reunite him with Kingsbury?
One can dream. For now, there is nothing but optimism and excitement for the Commanders future, which, under new leadership, appears to be brighter than it’s been in years.