The Dallas Cowboys already have a new defensive coordinator in Mike Nolan. Now they’ve reportedly landed the Vikings’ defensive coordinator as well.
In 2018, the Dallas Cowboys fielded a very talented defensive unit that was on the verge of being considered elite. That group regressed last season. Now, they’ll reportedly get some extra guidance from the man who led an impressive Minnesota Vikings defensive unit for the past six seasons.
The Cowboys defense allowed an average of 329.3 yards per game to opposing offenses in 2018, ranking them seventh best in the NFL. Dallas would limit their opponents to 20 points or less in nine of their 16-regular season games on their way to posting a 10-6 record and a playoff victory over the Seattle Seahawks.
Last season, the Cowboys record dropped to 8-8, they lost the NFC title to the Philadelphia Eagles, and were shutout of the postseason entirely. That disappointment resulted in the team finally parting ways with longtime head coach Jason Garrett, defensive coordinator Rod Marinelli, and several other members of the previous coaching staff.
The Dallas defense, who still ranked ninth in yards allowed (5,232) and 11th in average scoring allowed (20.1) in 2019, will now be led by Mike Nolan under new Cowboys head coach Mike McCarthy. A longtime NFL defensive coordinator, Nolan spent the past three seasons as the linebackers coach for the New Orleans Saints.
According to a report by longtime Cowboys beat writer Clarence Hill Jr., the Cowboys are also hiring Vikings’ defensive coordinator George Edwards. Although his specific role is unknown, Edwards will apparently help coach the linebackers. This will not be his first stint in Dallas, having started his NFL coaching career as the Cowboys’ linebacker coach in the late 90s.
For the past six years, Edwards was in charge of the defense in Minnesota under head coach Mike Zimmer. The Vikings defense ranked fifth in the league last season in both yards allowed (341.6) and scoring (18.9).
Per ESPN’s Todd Archer, George Edwards official title with the Dallas Cowboys will be senior defensive assistant per unnamed sources. The Minnesota Vikings had the best defense in the NFL in 2017, allowing just 275.9 yards per game and just 15.8 points per contest, both of which were the lowest in the league that season.