With Cowboys defensive coordinator Dan Quinn drawing widespread head-coaching interest, many card-carrying members of the fan base (and some within the national media) are recommending Vic Fangio as a potential replacement — a possibility that now exists following Fangio’s dismissal from Denver.
“If DQ leaves Dallas the Cowboys should consider Vic Fangio since he has the magic sauce to defend our offense,” tweeted @Stephen_Hallum.
“@realjerryjones Hi Mr. Jones. If Denver wants D. Quinn so bad, just go after Vic Fangio for our D. Coor. He would be a good fit with our great players. Also, has anyone ever thought about Danny White as an O Coor.? He’s a trueblood Cowboy, and was always a great offensive mind,” tweeted @Moark11.
“If Quinn leaves Cowboys need to get on phone with Fangio if he is let go from Denver,” tweeted @romalley216.
“The #Broncos become the third team with a head coach vacancy, and it’s an attractive one, with #Cowboys DC Dan Quinn, #Patriots ILB coach Jerod Mayo and #Packers OC Nathaniel Hackett among names to watch. Meanwhile, Vic Fangio immediately becomes a hot DC candidate,” tweeted NFL insider Tom Pelissero.
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Quick Background on Fangio
A longtime NFL assistant, Fangio accumulated a 19-30 coaching record across three seasons at the Broncos’ helm. The 63-year-old was fired by Denver on Sunday, January 9, the team announced, along with offensive coordinator Pat Shurmur and special teams boss Tom McMahon.
But Fangio, who doubles as play-caller, has routinely fielded stout defenses; his 2021 outfit ranks third in scoring and 10th in total yards allowed. The Cowboys became intimately familiar with Fangio’s prowess during their Week 9 encounter when the Broncos held Dallas scoreless for three quarters amid a shocking 30-16 upset.
After that game, Fangio claimed opponents simply haven’t played the Cowboys “the right way,” suggesting he created the blueprint to stifle Dak Prescott and company. The remark was not well received by his then-counterpart.
“This is a copycat league,” Dallas head coach Mike McCarthy said last November, via Pro Football Talk. “I just told the team, so get ready. I hope they do, too. Vic played us very aggressive. That’s good to hear him beating his own drum. Their linebacker depth, their linebackers are 3 yards; the safeties were up. In that case, you make their corners tackle. They played us aggressive. They went for it. I think you want that from the other team.”
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Quinn Favored to Succeed Vic in Denver
On Saturday, January 8, prior to the Broncos’ season-ending loss to Kansas City, CBS Sports’ Jason La Canfora reported that Quinn is emerging as a “top candidate” to replace Fangio in the Mile High City.
Quinn, who reached the Super Bowl as head coach of the Falcons, has done great work in his first season running the Cowboys defense, and his demeanor and personality would be a significant change from Fangio, who is more gruff and old-school. Quinn’s style of communication is quite different, and he is expected to garner heavy interest in a multitude of searches. He will not be taking part in the Jaguars head coaching search, according to sources, but is held in very high regard in Seattle, where he was a top assistant under Pete Carroll, should the Seahawks opt to make a change.
La Canfora’s hearsay echoes that of Pro Football Network’s Tony Pauline, who reported on December 30 that Quinn would draw interest from the Broncos, where he could reunite with general manager George Paton.
“Dan Quinn — who worked with [Broncos general manager] George Paton years ago in Miami, so they have a relationship working together — is the name that right now is being bandied about as a potential replacement for Fangio if Fangio is in fact fired at the end of the season,” Pauline said.