Following the appointment of Dan Quinn as the head coach of the Washington Commanders, the team swiftly secured key members of his coaching staff. Kliff Kingsbury, the former head coach of the Arizona Cardinals, agreed to a three-year deal to become the offensive coordinator, while Joe Whitt Jr., the former Dallas Cowboys secondary coach and defensive passing game coordinator, was named the defensive coordinator. These appointments came just a day after Quinn’s announcement.
The addition of Kliff Kingsbury is significant for the Commanders, especially in addressing the team’s struggling offense. Kingsbury, who spent the previous season as a senior offensive assistant at USC, has a history of offensive innovation and player development. With experience as both a player and a coach in the NFL, he played a key role in developing notable quarterbacks like Patrick Mahomes and Baker Mayfield during his coaching stints at Texas A&M and Texas Tech.
Known for his pro-style Air Raid offensive scheme, Kingsbury combines elements of a modern spread offense with a strong emphasis on the running game. The Cardinals, under his guidance, consistently ranked high in rushing attempts during the 2020 and 2021 seasons, addressing a significant gap in Washington’s offensive strategy from the previous season.
On the defensive side, Joe Whitt Jr. rejoins Dan Quinn, replicating their successful collaboration in transforming the Dallas Cowboys’ defense. Whitt Jr. played a crucial role in elevating the Cowboys’ defensive performance from 28th in points allowed and 23rd in yards allowed in 2020 to a top-five ranking in various defensive categories in 2021.
While Dan Quinn takes on the pivotal role of head coach, the appointments of coordinators with proven expertise in offensive innovation and defensive improvement underscore the strategic approach of the Commanders in addressing their team’s challenges. The timely assembly of a coaching staff with a shared vision aligns with General Manager Adam Peters’ emphasis on a process-driven approach, diligence in free agency, and a focus on building through the draft.
As Washington embarks on a critical phase of transformation, the combined experience of Quinn, Kingsbury, and Whitt Jr. positions the coaching staff as a central element in reshaping the team’s trajectory for the upcoming seasons.