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Cowboys news: Continuity at leadership suggests Dallas is a winner of the coaching carousel

The Cowboys are set to retain both coordinators, Dallas impresses during Pro Bowl weekend, speculations about free agency, and more.

NFL: Houston Texans at Dallas Cowboys Tim Heitman-USA TODAY Sports

Cowboys are big winners of coaching carousel after Mike McDaniel hire- John Buhler, FanSided

It looks like Dallas will walk into the 2022 season with both Kellen Moore and Dan Quinn.

Now that the Miami Dolphins are hiring Mike McDaniel to be their next head coach, no team was bigger winners coming off the coaching carousel than the Dallas Cowboys.

The job that went to the former San Francisco 49ers offensive coordinator could have potentially gone to Cowboys offensive coordinator Kellen Moore, as he was also a finalist. This comes after Cowboys defensive coordinator Dan Quinn removed himself from consideration for other head-coaching vacancies after he was not hired to lead either the Denver Broncos or the Chicago Bears.

With both top coordinators presumably returning, the Cowboys are in a great position to take control of an NFC in flux next season.

We have agreed to terms with Mike McDaniel. Welcome to Miami, Coach!

— Miami Dolphins (@MiamiDolphins) February 6, 2022

Dallas Cowboys come out big winners after the latest coaching carousel

Unless Moore sees himself as the next head coach of the Houston Texans or the New Orleans Saints, or if Quinn goes back on his word, these two top coordinators are returning to Dallas for a second season together. Given the amount of upheaval in the NFC North and the NFC South, this is Dallas’ time to take advantage of the conference being in transition and go assert its dominance.

Pro Bowl Recap: Diggs At WR; Parsons’ Sack; More- Rob Phillips,

Yesterday was the last time we will see Dallas Cowboys players in action for several months and they had some key moments in the Pro Bowl.

During the season, Cowboys cornerback Trevon Diggs lobbied (unsuccessfully) for an occasional snap at wide receiver.

Playing in his first career Pro Bowl, Diggs finally got his chance against a familiar opponent: his brother, Bills wide receiver Stefon Diggs.

The brief-but-entertaining role reversal was among the highlights of Sunday’s all-star game, won by 41-35 by the AFC at Allegiant Stadium in Las Vegas.

Trevon didn’t get a catch against his brother — Stefon appeared to hold him on a fade route in the end zone before halftime — but he picked off Patriots quarterback Mac Jones in the second quarter to set up a touchdown for the NFC.

Diggs, this year’s NFL interception leader (11), was one of four Cowboys representatives on the NFC squad along with linebacker Micah Parsons, wide receiver CeeDee Lamb and punter Bryan Anger — all first-time Pro Bowl selections.

Fresh off his first career 1,000-yard season, Lamb had four catches for 41 yards playing alongside NFC quarterbacks Kyler Murray (Cardinals), Russell Wilson (Seahawks) and Kirk Cousins (Vikings).

Parsons, a leading candidate for NFL Defensive Rookie of the Year, promised this week he’d bring some physicality to Sunday’s game, which has evolved into an unofficial non-tackling format. Credited with eight tackles against the AFC, Parsons did bring ball-carriers to the ground and forced a fumble sacking Chiefs quarterback Patrick Mahomes just before halftime. The Cowboys’ 2021 sack leader (13.0) played a role similar to his position in Dallas, alternating between linebacker, blitzer and edge rusher.

Jerry Jones comments on Dan Quinn’s chances of being Cowboys HC- Lauren Barash, The Landry Hat

Jerry continues to provide fuel to the speculation fire.

While speaking to the press at the Senior Bowl in Mobile, Alabama, Jones was asked whether he believed Dan Quinn could be a head coach for the Cowboys. Interpret his answer however you please:

“He’s certainly qualified. He’s very qualified. Yes, I would consider. If I didn’t have a coach, I would have been interviewing him for coach.”

When Jones re-signed the defensive coordinator for 2022, he did say that Quinn would be with the team for many “years to come.” But did he mean as a defensive coordinator or as a future head coach? The owner claims that the plan was always to stick with McCarthy and that nobody worked harder to keep Quinn around than the head coach himself.

Cowboys Owner/GM Jerry Jones on if he would consider DC Dan Quinn as a potential future HC for the Cowboys: He’s certainly qualified. He’s very qualified. Yes, I would consider him. If I didn’t have a coach, I would have been interviewing him for coach (this year). #dallascowboys

— Dallas Cowboys Network (@TheCowboysNet) February 3, 2022

DE Dorance Armstrong Made a Solid Case to be Retained in 2022- Matthew Lenix, Inside The Star

Dorance Armstrong had a solid 2021 campaign, but the salary cap questions remain.

Dallas has to take a hard look at the defensive end position. DeMarcus Lawrence has been mentioned as a possible cap casualty, and Randy Gregory is set to test the market for his first huge payday. However, there’s another player at the position that will be looking for a new deal.

Dorance Armstrong, a former fourth-round pick in 2018, had his best showing in the NFL in 2021, but the question is, was it enough to be brought back for a second go-around with the Cowboys?

Armstrong showed flashes during his first three seasons but struggled to be a consistent presence on the Cowboys’ defensive line. This season would be a different story. Although he’ll never be mistaken for T. J. Watt or Von Miller, Armstrong compiled a very solid campaign with career highs in tackles (37), sacks (5), and quarterback hits (12) while also adding a fumble recovery, a blocked punt, and a defensive touchdown against the Washington Commanders in Week 14 after a sack by rookie Linebacker Micah Parsons. Also, he recorded 36 pressures and 23 quarterback hurries.

5 free agents with Dan Quinn ties Cowboys could secure- Lauren Barash, The Landry Hat

After signing Damontae Kazee and Keanu Neal in 2021, Dallas might once again pick up cheap free agents that used to play with Dan Quinn.

3. Richard Sherman, CB

Richard Sherman has had quite the career. At 33 years old, he is a three-time All-Pro, a Super Bowl champion, and a five-time Pro Bowler. Although landing on the IR twice (any player who is placed to the IR twice in a season is automatically disqualified for the rest of the season) only allowed him to play in five games this season, Sherman still played an integral role on the Tampa Bay Buccaneers.

In October, when defensive backs coach Kevin Ross was out with COVID, Sherman stepped up to help coach the unit. While he may not be the high-level cornerback he was in his 20s, there is no denying that Sherman’s leadership and knowledge of the game could help any roster. Young corners like Kelvin Joseph and Jourdan Lewis could learn a lot from Sherman.

Didn’t go how I wanted it to but I’m grateful for the opportunity to strap it up again! Look forward to continuing this journey with my teammates and coaching my butt off. Thank you for all the support this season. The body gave all it had and I’m grateful.

— Richard Sherman (@RSherman_25) January 11, 2022

Cowboys interior pressure fell off, could Demarvin Leal be the fix in 2022?- Tyler Browning, Cowboys Wire

It is an option to fix the still-struggling rushing defense.

Physical Skills Evaluation:

Explosiveness: Despite the move to edge, still displayed good explosiveness. Wasn’t elite by any measure but it would definitely improve with a move inside. Had moments where he exploded through his hips and shot off the edge this year. Very light on his feet.

Pad Level/Leverage: Establishes leverage quickly and effectively. Has long arms, able to stack and shed with relative ease.

Pass Rush Plan: Lacks a super refined toolbox of moves, relies mostly on athleticism and length to win the rep. Has good moves for disengaging from blocks but not really to rush the passer. He is used to being an IDL man and his toolbox is better suited for it. Has a good long arm. Developed more of his legs in the pass rush as the season went on, added a hop step to some rushes. Saw him develop more moves into 2021.

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