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With job secure, Falcons' Quinn 'excited to get rolling'

Dan Quinn learned Friday he'd survive and see his job into the 2020 season.

It was excellent news for a coach who started the season with a 1-7 record. Things were dire for a while before his team rallied, winning five of its next seven games. He got a chance to express gratitude for the developments of the last two months.

"Not every coach gets to see his team fight for him," Quinn said. "And I thought that's very humbling."

Humbling indeed, but also a lesson: Don't make the same errors twice, because if such a start happens again, he won't get another chance. Quinn admitted as much Friday, and was grateful for the second opportunity.

"I've made mistakes and we get to fix them. I think that's the important thing," Quinn said. "Use these lessons here and not everybody else has the chance to do that.

"I certainly hate the results, but man I learned a lot. I'd say more than anything, I can't wait to use the things I've learned from this team moving forward. That's what I take from [my] visit today [with owner Arthur Blank] and what I discussed with the team."

Fixing them will involve making roster changes, something general manager Thomas Dimitroff will have to handle with his own second opportunity, but also improving on the coaching front. That begins with the promotion of interim defensive coordinator Raheem Morris, who learned Friday he'll be named permanent defensive coordinator at the conclusion of the 2019 season.

Armed with a defensive coordinator whose changes resulted in success for the Falcons and also took the responsibility off Quinn's shoulders, the head coach will give it another go in 2020, knowing he has the support of his locker room.

"I felt like I took on too much at times," Quinn reflected. "That's being head coach, defensive coordinator, trying to work with the GM. I learned that and I fixed that. I wanted to make sure that I was able to do that and I'm excited to get rolling."

We'll see if the Falcons can return to contention or else face a house cleaning after the first season in the new decade.

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