FRISCO, Texas — In the very near future, Dan Quinn will make a decision on the next phase of his NFL career. He currently resides as the defensive coordinator of the Dallas Cowboys, and has since joining the organization in 2021, but he's also wrapping up his latest round of interviews to possibly return to the head coaching ranks in 2024.
With the Cowboys keeping Mike McCarthy onboard for the coming season, the other major shoe waiting to drop is being held by Quinn, who is expected to make his decision sooner than later.
Should Quinn not accept a head coach position this offseason, the Cowboys are expected to retain him in his current role as well beside McCarthy — who continues to offer praise for his defensive counterpart.
"Dan is a highly-valued member of our coaching staff," said McCarthy. "We'll go through the process there."
Quinn's pending decision will have major ramifications on the defensive side of the ball, particularly as it relates to McCarthy's plan for the assistant coaching staff beneath Quinn.
Those meetings and discussions set to begin later this week, per McCarthy, with a timetable that is undoubtedly being respectful of the "process" being undertaken by Quinn regarding interviews.
"We'll start that [soon]," McCarthy said. "Some of those conversations will be preliminary, right now, but we're moving forward in that direction. Obviously, this is the time of the year where there are other opportunities, and we'll work through that … on a day-to-day basis."
It remains unknown if the coaching staff will have the same look in 2024, even if Quinn sticks around, given McCarthy's willingness to move pieces around (and out or in) over the past four seasons with the goal of upgrading his staff — e.g., Joe Philbin to Mike Solari and Mike Nolan to Dan Quinn, as two examples of several.
Should Quinn opt to depart, discussions with assistant defensive coaches would obviously take on a different tone here soon, with a possible promotion being on the table for one or more, along with subsequent and related decisions to be made thereafter.
But, for now, it's a waiting game, though it won't be for much longer.