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Opinion: Falcons coach Dan Quinn's style 'should have worked'

11Alive's Jeff Hullinger says Atlanta Falcons head coach Dan Quinn was different.

ATLANTA — I never sympathize with Falcons head coaches. I’ve seen too many.

They make a lot of money, wield great influence and of course, know what they are getting into with the Falcons in Atlanta.

Dan Quinn was different.

The “Brotherhood” was the right idea.

Racial issues are always part of every roster and locker room.

White players usually sit with white players on charters and during meals, black players usually sit with black players on charters and during meals.

Creating a bridge to a seldom discussed divide is a cool idea, the right idea and long overdue.

I like Quinn’s theory of how NFL teams should play -- fast and furious.

Quinn was on to something in Atlanta.

A diverse fan base, a diverse roster, in a city defined by its civil rights history, with a playing style ushering in a new era of Falcons play. Terrific players, too.

Quinn’s rhetoric worked with young football players, too.

Those of us who think we are so smart, mock his cliche-ridden bromides, but young players really do talk in such catchphrases.

They get it. We don’t.

So, what happened?

When head coaches are forced to bounce assistants, it’s the football equivalent of surrender.

Can you name a head coach who turned their team around by firing assistants? 


The conga line of offensive coordinators hasn’t helped, either.

How many has (quarterback) Matt Ryan seen?

The (Steve) Sarkisian hire was woeful.

(Defensive end) Vic Beasley is a bust; injuries to the secondary have been devastating. The offensive line is porous.

Quinn is not (Dan) Henning, (Marion) Campbell, (Jerry) Glanville or (June) Jones.

Those head coaches never came close to winning a Super Bowl in Atlanta.

Quinn did.

He wasn’t overmatched by the job. He was overmatched by the aftermath of 28-3.

The end surprises me. It should have worked.

It did -- for a while.

11Alive's Jeff Hullinger has been one of Atlanta’s best known and most versatile broadcasters for 30 years.


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