Dallas Cowboys fans around the world all simultaneously gasped on Saturday morning when it was reported that the team interviewed Marvin Lewis for the soon-to-be head coach opening. Yes, that Marvin Lewis.
Lewis’ track record with the Cincinnati Bengals is well known. He coached for what Bengals fans felt like was forever and not once delivered a single playoff win. That’s rough.
Many believe that it would be a lateral move at best for the Cowboys to replace Jason Garrett with Marvin Lewis as the their head coach, but what if Dallas wasn’t interviewing Lewis for that position?
While it feels as if Marvin’s only NFL job was ever as the Bengals head coach he was the Baltimore Ravens coordinator for a long time (1996-2001). He was part of the Ravens team that won Super Bowl XXXV and obviously was the coordinator for that defense, one of the greatest that the NFL has ever seen.
Could the Cowboys be considering Marvin Lewis as a defensive coordinator?
This isn’t to say that Marvin Lewis is single-handedly responsible for the success of the 2000 Ravens defense, but he obviously has a knack for that side of the ball. Is it possible that the Cowboys are considering him as a defensive coordinator?
Charles Robinson said this past week on the Yahoo Sports NFL podcast that the Cowboys are big fans of Oklahoma Sooners head coach Lincoln Riley but they are concerned with the defenses that he has put forth while in Norman. What’s more is that Charles added if the Cowboys do go the Lincoln route that they would likely pair him with a seasoned defensive coordinator, doesn’t Marvin Lewis fit that bill?
“I think there are some people inside the Cowboys who are extremely impressed by Lincoln Riley. The one caveat I will add to that is if there’s anything that leaves the Cowboys with some pause about Lincoln Riley it is the way that his defenses have functioned at Oklahoma and I would say that he would very much be, if he were hired by the Cowboys, it would be engineered so that he has a very, very good, seasoned defensive coordinator a la when McVay goes to the Rams Wade Phillips becomes his defensive coordinator to help smooth that transition. So I think like if Lincoln Riley is your guy, Terez, you’re hiring a really good defensive coordinator. And boy wouldn’t it be great if like… hey what if Mike Zimmer got fired? I think Mike Zimmer would want another head coaching job, but holy cow can you imagine Mike Zimmer as your defensive coordinator?”
Robinson threw out Mike Zimmer as an option (the Mike Zimmer talk has been frequent this past week) at defensive coordinator, but what about the guy that Zimmer himself was a defensive coordinator for while in Cincinnati?
Not to imply that Lewis was a great head coach with the Bengals, but it wouldn’t exactly be the worst thing in the world to have someone like him for someone like Lincoln Riley (hypothetically, of course) to lean on and learn from early on in an NFL career. Lewis’ experience combined with his defensive prowess are qualities that could be of legitimate interest and it’s possible that this is what the Cowboys are after.
Of course, it’s also possible that Dallas has legitimate interest in Lewis as a head coach. To be fair, they also technically have a head coach at the moment and his name is Jason Garrett so there’s nothing normal about this whole experience.