That’s right folks, as absurd as it may seem to you, the Scott Linehan hire will make a bigger impact on this team than the Rod Marinelli promotion. Do I expect the defense to be much improved over last year? Of course I do. The Cowboys got a reality check on their defensive depth and overall talent. Those issues will be addressed. Couple that with the fact that this is year two in this 4-3 scheme and without a doubt, this unit will be better. Let’s face it they have nowhere to go but up. Rod Marinelli wont necessarily be the key difference in that improvement, but he will garner the credit.
Linehan, on the other hand, will make the offense better on day one all by himself. He and Garrett have a similar offensive mind-set and there will be trust there between the two men. This team will immediately go back to the attacking-style offense that we all saw in the years before 2013. This offense looked as uncoordinated as ever last season, and the familiarity between Garrett and Linehan should remove that problem.
The dink-and-dunk rubbish from last year is going to hit the road. Garrett was not pleased with the offensive performance last year, and with good reason. That was not his unit playing out there.
The stats say that the Cowboys offense was pretty good last year. Not true. Numerous times the Cowboys got the ball in great field position thanks to a turnover but squandered their opportunity. Too many 3 and outs, and far, far too many times they let teams hang around, only to lose the game. Not to say that this was all Bill Callahan‘s fault but he surely had a huge hand in it, and was the main difference from the aggressive play-calling the years before. It was never a good match, ever!
That is why Garrett did not get fired. It was Jerry’s call to promote Callahan, so he felt like he was responsible for some of the teams issues, and rightfully so. Do you think if Garrett had been able to hire Norv Turner last off-season and the offense struggled that he would still be here? Or if he had called his own plays? NOT A CHANCE! Callahan was forced on him and he got a pass as a result.
Meanwhile, Kiffin’s defense had the same players as the bad defense from the year before, add a scheme change and all those injuries to the d-line and there you have it – a disaster.
Sure, Marinelli will add some fire and his own tweaks to the defense but the main factors to that unit’s improvement will be younger, better players and another off-season in the system. Marinelli is going to run the same defense as Kiffin, simple as that.
Both of these moves are going to help this team as a whole, but another year of Bill Callahan calling plays would have been hard to watch and I am glad I wont have to see it.