Football

5 potential replacements for Dan Quinn with the Atlanta Falcons

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With Jay Gruden being fired Monday, the Atlanta Falcons’ Dan Quinn could be next. Who could be the next head coach in Atlanta if Quinn is done?The first domino has fallen on the coaching carousel. On Monday morning, the Washington Redskins parted ways with their head coach of the last six years by firing Jay Gruden. Washington finds itself in a terrible 0-5. Gruden was reluctant to start rookie quarterback Dwayne Haskins. The Washington brass saw otherwise. Now, it will be Bill Callahan taking for him in the interim.It’s usually around this time where the first head coach will be fired in a given NFL season. However, many thought the first coach that would have gotten the ax would have been Dan Quinn of the Atlanta Falcons. Quinn has gone 1-4 this year in Atlanta. After a 7-9 season in 2018, the Falcons’ awful start and terrible execution defensively could mean Quinn is on the way out.Owner Arthur Blank remains supportive of his head coach, but the writing is on the wall for Quinn. His teams get outcoached more often than not. With so much talent scattered all over the gridiron on both sides of the ball, Atlanta should be contending for a playoff spot and not for positioning in the top 10 of the upcoming 2020 NFL Draft.If Blank does decide that he has had enough of Quinn, here are five potential replacements he could look at in finding the Dirty Birds’ next head coach heading into 2020. Atlanta should be one of the better head coaching jobs if it becomes available. Blank runs a first-class organization and needs a head coach that will finally reflect that. Here’s who could be in the mix. 5 Lincoln Riley Head Coach Oklahoma Sooners This is a long shot. If Lincoln Riley is ever going to leave the Oklahoma Sooners, it would have to be for the perfect situation. He can continue to be the greatest quarterback whisperer in college football, sending as many Sooners signal-callers to the Heisman Trophy presentation as he would like, all the while winning Big 12 Championship after Big 12 Championship and nothing more.Oklahoma is a blue-blood college football job, but Riley may hit his ceiling in Norman sooner rather than later and may want a new challenge. Eventually, some team is going to try to pry him out of the Big 12. It might be the Dallas Cowboys or some other team like that.Atlanta isn’t the first, or even the second, NFL team that has the best shot of landing his services, but that doesn’t mean the Falcons organization won’t be willing to kick the tires. The last time Atlanta hired an offensive-minded head coach, it was from the college ranks, as former Louisville Cardinals head coach Bobby Petrino replaced Jim Mora after three seasons in 2007.Petrino did leave the Falcons after 13 games for the Arkansas Razorbacks job is a tasteless manner, but not coaching Michael Vick wasn’t what he signed up for. Matt Ryan may not be anything remotely close to the type of quarterback Riley wants to use, even if he is an accurate passer. Regardless, gauging Riley’s interest in the Falcons and the NFL is worth investigating.

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