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Mailbag: Getting Coaches To Stay In Dallas?

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With no cap ramifications with a coaches salary, do you think it is possible that Jerry Jones can offer Dan Quinn a high enough salary to make him stay rather than accept a head coaching position elsewhere? This defense is finally on track and playing lights out. It would be a real shame to lose the reason for that to another team. – KLAYTON LAMBERT / HARPERS FERRY, WV

David: There are numerous examples we could cite of Jerry Jones doing everything in his power to keep a coach in Dallas – so the short answer is definitely yes. I also think it's important to remember that Dan Quinn isn't some first-year coach who's going to jump at any opportunity. He's been in this game a long time and has seen the highest highs and lowest lows. I'm willing to bet he understands the situation he's in, and I doubt he'd leave it for anything less than the best opportunity. I can't predict the future, but I wouldn't be surprised if Dan decides to stick around for both of those reasons.

Nick: I don't think Dan Quinn is the type of coach that is doing this for the money. So yes, Jerry Jones can pay him whatever he wants to keep him. But if Quinn has the goal to be a head coach again, I think he's going to pursue it - but not any job. This time around, he'll be smart about what job is right for him and where he can succeed. But I'll say this- he was able to turn this around pretty quickly. But he'll be the first to admit that he's got to have some players. So if he's got a chance to coach somewhere AND they've got some young talent like he inherited here, I'm sure he'll take it. That being said, my gut says he'll be back at least another year.

I will be the first to admit that I did not see this defense becoming what it is this year. Was last year's defense as bad as it looked, or were they making strides that we just couldn't see? And, what is the biggest difference this year, the players or the coaches? – JEREMY KINCHELOE / VIRGINIA BEACH, VA

David: We can all be excited about this defense and admit we didn't see it coming without having to rewrite history. Last year's defense was absolutely atrocious from the scheme on down. When you finish 31st in run defense and allow the most points in franchise history, you're bad – no way around it. As far as the difference, as usual I think it's a combination of both. The front office added several legitimate difference makers in the offseason, including drafting a Defensive Player of the Year candidate. The talent they already had – Trevon Diggs, Neville Gallimore – took another step. And to top it all off, they're executing a scheme they understand and seem to thrive in.

Nick: I think the biggest difference is Micah Parsons. He's certainly not doing this all by himself and I credit Dan Quinn for having a huge role in his success. But Parsons is the reason the Cowboys have turned it around this dramatically in one season. He can rush the passer from anywhere and his pressure alone has allowed others to shine. Again, nothing against Trevon Diggs, who has been amazing on his own, and Tank and Gregory and Kearse are all playing lights out, but Parsons is the MVP of this defense and the reason for the sudden success.

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