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McCarthy Confirms Staff Changes; Al Harris Added


FRISCO, Texas – New head coach Mike McCarthy is still in the process of finalizing his coaching staff, but he did confirm a number of hires and expected roles during his visit with local reporters Thursday.

Here's how McCarthy says his staff is shaping up to this point:

Offensive coordinator - Kellen Moore is back for a second season in this role, and McCarthy said he's confident in Moore remaining the play caller. "That's the path we're going down," McCarthy said. "We're still working through that, but my goal is for him to be the play caller." McCarthy was impressed with Moore's work as a first-year coordinator last year and values the progress he has made with quarterback Dak Prescott.

Defensive coordinator - Mike Nolan will take over the defense. McCarthy was offensive coordinator on Nolan's 2005 staff in San Francisco before serving as Packers head coach from 2006-18. Nolan, 60, has been a defensive coordinator for seven NFL teams since 1993 and most recently was the Saints' linebackers coach the last three years.

Special teams coordinator - John Fassel is taking over here after holding the same position with the Rams for the last eight seasons. Previously special teams coordinators with the Ravens (2005-07) and Raiders (2008-11), Fassel's units have consistently been among the best in the league.

QBs coach - Doug Nussmeier is moving from tight ends coach the last two years to Prescott's position coach. Like Moore, McCarthy values Nussmeier's work the last two seasons as well as his versatility and experience. "That was probably one of my first hires after the coordinator because of the relationship there between Kellen and Doug and the quarterbacks and building off of what's in place here," McCarthy said. "Doug has a wide variety of being in different systems, and that's someone Kellen felt really strong about."

RBs coach - Skip Peete is back in this role after holding the same position in Dallas from 2007-12. Peete has been running backs coach on four NFL teams since 1998, most recently with the Rams from 2016-19. He and McCarthy coached together as young assistants at the University of Pittsburgh from 1989-91.

TEs coachLunda Wells held the same position with the Giants the last two years. He was on the Giants' staff from 2012-19, first as assistant offensive line coach.

Offensive line coach – Joe Philbin served as both offensive line coach and offensive coordinator for McCarthy in Green Bay. Philbin, 58, has coached in the league since 2003 and was the Dolphins' head coach from 2012-15.

Assistant offensive line coachJeff Blasko held the same position for three years on McCarthy's staff in Green Bay and served on the Browns' staff last season.

Defensive line coachJim Tomsula is yet another new Cowboys assistant with previous NFL head coaching experience. Tomsula was the 49ers' head coach in 2015, but he has been a defensive line coach for 11 NFL seasons, including the last three in Washington.

LBs coach – Scott McCurley worked on McCarthy's staff all 13 years in Green Bay, including a role as linebackers coach.

DBs coach – McCarthy said the team is still working through specific roles here, but Maurice Linguist and Al Harris – a former Pro Bowl cornerback under McCarthy in Green Bay – are coming aboard. Harris has been an assistant with the Chiefs, and Linguist has coached defensive backs at the college level for the past 13 seasons, most recently Texas A&M's cornerbacks last year.

McCarthy said the team hasn't finalized the wide receivers coach position yet.

Leon Lett, a Cowboys defensive assistant/defensive tackles coach since 2011, will interview with the defensive staff in the coming days, McCarthy said.