INDIANAPOLIS –At 29, new quarterbacks coach Kellen Moore is one of the youngest assistants in the NFL.
Moore is making a direct transition from player to coach, from Dak Prescott's teammate to his primary sounding board, responsible in part for his weekly preparation and development.
Head coach Jason Garrett understands the conversion from quarterback to quarterbacks coach. He retired from playing at age 39 and began his coaching career in that role with the Dolphins in 2005.
This week from the NFL Scouting Combine in Indianapolis, Garrett explained why he and the Cowboys believe Moore – a backup with the Lions and Cowboys from 2012-17 – is ready to move into an important role on his staff.
"I think there are certain guys that you know right away that could be really good coaching candidates," Garrett said. "He's always taken a very intellectual perspective to the game. I think emotionally he has a really good feel for what a quarterback goes through. So when you look at those things and evaluate him as a player you say, 'Boy, these are good traits.'
"Kellen is one of those players at that position who in a lot of ways has been a mentor to Dak right from the start. Kellen played five, six, seven years in the league. He's been around (offensive coordinator) Scott (Linehan), but he also has this maturity about him. He had it right from the start and he probably had it when he was seven years old playing Pop Warner. His understanding of situations, understanding of the game, is really, really good. He's got a really good way about him and from that position as the third quarterback, I think he's done a really good job for the quarterbacks in the room, helping them, supporting them along with the coaches that we have. To me, that's always the best dynamic to have, if you have that chemistry in that room and can really help the quarterback who's playing, I really believe very strongly in that and he's done that.
"He'll have a transition to be a coach like any player who goes directly into coaching has, but he's someone who will pick it up quickly. He's very dedicated to the game. He'll work hard at it and he'll do a good job for us."