Quinn says second interview with Falcons goes ‘very well’
Seattle defensive coordinator Dan Quinn’s second interview with the Falcons appears to have strengthened his chances of becoming Atlanta’s next coach.
Quinn’s agent, Rick Smith, told The Associated Press that Monday’s interview "went very well."
"There’s definitely mutual interest," Smith said Tuesday.
The Falcons can’t offer the job to Quinn until after the Seahawks play New England in the Super Bowl on Feb. 1. Atlanta fired coach Mike Smith after a 6-10 season.
Quinn is the second candidate to have a follow-up interview with the Falcons. Detroit defensive coordinator Teryl Austin is the other.
The Falcons have waited for Quinn while seeing other candidates, including Rex Ryan, hired by other teams. Ryan, the former Jets coach, joined Buffalo following his first interview with Atlanta.
The Falcons also have interviewed New England offensive coordinator Josh McDaniels, Broncos offensive coordinator Adam Gase, former Bills coach Doug Marrone and Atlanta special teams coach Keith Armstrong.
Seattle has advanced to the Super Bowl in each of their two seasons with Quinn as defensive coordinator. Quinn’s defense shut down Peyton Manning and the Denver Broncos to win last year’s Super Bowl.
The Seahawks granted permission for Monday’s interview.
"I am pretty wide open and flexible in hoping that it works out, and that it won’t be a distraction," Seattle coach Pete Carroll said Monday. "There will be questions and stuff like that, but we have such a big mission that we are on, and Dan wants nothing more than doing exactly right for what we have to do these next couple of days and the next week.
"He has no intention other than that, and he is dead solid on that, and that’s what we will get, but lots of questions will come out."
While the Falcons appear willing to wait two weeks for Quinn, there are reports the team already is building a staff. The Falcons have not confirmed multiple reports the team has an agreement to hire Kyle Shanahan as offensive coordinator. Shanahan resigned as the Cleveland Browns’ offensive coordinator following the season.
Carroll said Quinn has what it takes to be a head coach.
"Dan has tremendous character," Carroll said. "He has great leadership qualities. He is an excellent communicator. He has great experience behind him. He has worked with a lot of guys who have influenced him and helped him along the way.
"He’s got a competitive nature that I think he conveys. Look at what he’s done to our guys. He has been a fantastic guy on our staff; he works well at this level. The players totally believe him and understand what he wants – he conveys the message. I think it will be a great step for him when the time comes."