Five Possible Candidates for the Falcons Defensive Coordinator Position


Working on the assumption that the current Seattle Seahawks defensive coordinator Dan Quinn will be the next head coach of the Atlanta Falcons here is a look at who the front runners could be for the defensive coordinator position

Ken Norton Jr (Current Seahawks linebackers coach)

As a player Norton won three consecutive Super Bowls with the Cowboys and 49ers. From 2004-2009 Norton was the linebackers coach at the University of Southern California working with current Seahawks head coach Pete Carroll. In 2010 he re-joined Carroll working the same position in Seattle.

Travis Jones (Current Seahawks defensive line coach)

Possibly the favourite for the job unless the Seahawks offer him the DC job in Seattle. Like Muschamp Jones also worked with Quinn in Miami in 2005/06. In 2010 Jones left the New Orleans Saints to become the defensive line coach in Seattle although Quinn did not re-join the Seahawks until 2013 so the pair have worked together for a total of four years.

Mike Muschamp (Current Auburn University defensive coordinator)

Although hiring Muschamp could be the best possible scenario for the Falcons it is also the most unlikely. Muschamp only joined Auburn in December after being fired as head coach in Florida. Quinn was the defensive coordinator in Florida under Muschamp in 2011 and they were both on the Miami Dolphins coaching staff in 2005.

Mike Nolan (Current Falcons defensive coordinator)

Officially Nolan is still the current DC in Atlanta and Quinn could choose to keep him on. Nolan was the defensive coordinator with the 49ers in 2003/04 the same time that Quinn was defensive line coach. Nolan was in charge of statistically the worst defense in the NFL last season and his chosen formula for success failed and was called out (along with Mike Smith) by general manager Thomas Dimitroff. For this reason the Falcons front office may push for a successor. Nolan interviewed for the vacant DC job in Arizona this week.

Richard Smith (Current Broncos linebackers coach)

Another long shot who worked with Quinn in Miami where Smith was the DC back in 2005. Smith then went to the Houston Texans also as the defensive coordinator before becoming linebackers coach with the Carolina Panthers before moving to Denver in 2011.

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