Former Detroit Lions coaches find success in Dallas

The Detroit Lions will battle the Dallas Cowboys this Monday night. The game is incredibly important to the Lions as they fight for a playoff spot. Detroit fans that tune in will get the chance to see some familiar faces stalking the Dallas sidelines. Former Detroit coaches Scott Linehan and Rod Marinelli have rejuvenated their careers in The Big D.

Linehan has led a wonderful career in the NFL as an assistant coach. Known mainly for his work as an offensive coordinator, he has helped many players and teams have record setting seasons over his career. Linehan was the offensive coordinator for the Lions from 2009 – 2013 where he helped mentor young quarterback Matthew Stafford. In 2011, Stafford threw for a Lions franchise record 41 touchdowns and over 5,000 yards. He was only the fourth quarterback in NFL history to accumulate that many yards through the air.

These days Linehan is now in Dallas helping rookies Dak Prescott and Ezekiel Elliott lead the Cowboys to a NFC best 12-2 record. This season, Elliott continues to make plays like this and has a chance to break Eric Dickerson’s rookie rushing record of 1,808 yards.

Bold Prediction: The Detroit Lions ... x
Bold Prediction: The Detroit Lions will have double digit losses

While Linehan is likely remembered fondly in Detroit there is another former Lions coach in Dallas who left a different legacy behind him. Of course, I’m talking about Rod Marinelli. Lions fans will remember that, as head coach in 2008, Marinelli guided Detroit to an historic 0-16 record. Not surprisingly, the Dallas Cowboys website bio of Marinelli conveniently leaves out any mention of his historically bad season in Detroit.

The man who was famous for the phrase “pound the rock” in Detroit is now enjoying massive success as a defensive coordinator in Dallas. Marinelli, who has always been known for a keen sensibility of defensive football, has found his niche and is helping develop young players like David Irving on the Cowboys defensive line.

The Lions have a tall task on Monday night. A nationally televised road game where they’ll be facing some old coaching friends. Trouble is, those friends are now part of one of the best teams in the NFL so far in 2016. Time will tell if Detroit will be able to overcome these former coaches who have found a new home.

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