It was obvious by the amount of blitzing the Cowboys did Sunday against the Giants that Kris Richard, not Rod Marinelli, was making the defensive play calls. Blitzing is not in Marinelli’s DNA.
The Cowboys’ defensive coordinator confirmed Thursday that the team’s passing game coordinator handled the defensive calls against the Giants. Richard primarily handled the duties in the season opener at Carolina, too.
“All week [we talk about the play-calling], and I’ll say, ‘Hey, take it, Kris. You got it. Let’s go. You got a good feel of the back room,'” Marinelli said, via Brandon George of the Dallas Morning News. “Because he has to feel pressure-wise if we can hold up, all those things. The thing I’ve always believed in, and it’s one of our standards here, is it’s about the team. The team to me is everything. Every decision you make is how you get the team better. Some of the things he can do he makes us better. So I’m really glued to that.”
It’s hard to argue: The Cowboys rank fourth in total defense and have allowed only 29 points in two games.
Marinelli said it was similar to what the Cowboys allowed linebackers coach Matt Eberflus to do last season. Eberflus left in the offseason to become the Colts defensive coordinator. The Cowboys hired Richard to replace Eberflus after the Seahawks fired Richard.
Richard goes against his former team Sunday.