The Falcons have zeroed in on and interviewed several head coach candidates with offensive backgrounds since the season wrapped earlier this month. They promised their search for a new head coach wasn’t about offense or defense—it was just about finding the best candidate. But that hasn’t been their focus lately. In fact, Titans offensive coordinator is the current frontrunner for Dan Quinn’s old job and it appears he may soon be named as the Falcons new head coach.
This just isn’t what we’re used to seeing from the Falcons. Over the last 3 decades, the Falcons have preferred defensive-minded head coaches. Two of those head coaches, Mike Smith and Dan Quinn, oversaw the most successful stretch in franchise history.
Join me on a trip down memory lane as we remember some of the offensive-minded head coaches from the past three decades.
Bobby Petrino (13 games in 2007)
Oh, Bobby. The Falcons handed Petrino a 5-year, $24 million contract after a successful 4-year stretch as Louisville’s head coach. Petrino was handed a team in shambles, after he was promised the opportunity to work with Mike Vick. The Falcons hoped his success at Louisville would translate to the NFL and ... it didn’t. Petrino’s offenses have historically focused on balance, mixing in spread formations with power running. He also likes to brag about his “FTS” (“Feed the Studs”) mentality, highlighting the team’s best players.
Dan Reeves (1997-2003)
Reeves’ offenses could be fairly construed as “old school,” with a strong emphasis on pounding the rock. He’d have his receivers stretch the field to set up play action. His particular brand of smashmouth football is now just an artifact of a bygone era.
June Jones (1994-1996)
A big fan of run and shoot, Jones’ offense made Jeff George look good during his first two years as the Falcons’ head coach. (Jones played quarterback at Portland State, where Mouse Davis made run and shoot famous in the 1970s.)
Your thoughts about the Falcons’ history with offensive-minded head coaches?