1. Opening Statement: There's only one shot at first impressions and new Falcons head coach Dan Quinn nailed his opportunity during his introductory press conference Tuesday. Confident and dressed in suit and tie, Quinn waited as Falcons owner and chairman Arthur Blank introduced him to the media and then offered his first statement:
"I'm so fired up to be here with you guys today," Quinn said. "First off, I would like to thank Mr. Blank, Thomas Dimitroff, Rich McKay and so many in the Falcons organization that waited through our (Seattle) Seahawks playoff run for me to have this opportunity to be here with you today. That's not an easy thing to do in this business. For those guys to have that kind of conviction told me very clearly the type of leadership that's in place here and one that I so wanted to be a part of. ... I appreciate you guys in terms of waiting and I can't wait to build a similar championship environment right here in Atlanta."
2. The Quinn Way: It's tough to find an NFL head coach who doesn't have his own coaching philosophy and Quinn is not an exception. After years of experience in the league as an assistant, most recently as a defensive coordinator in Seattle, Quinn is embracing his first opportunity as being the Falcons leader, revealing his approach to the new position:
"We're going to try to be the best fundamental team in football," Quinn said. "That's a real challenge in tackling and our ability to go after the ball and take care of an offense and those will be some of the core tenets we'll talk about. We're going to try and hit people as hard as possible in the strike zone."
3. Quick Transition: The 2014 season ended Sunday night after Super Bowl XLIX for Quinn, who then accepted the job as the Falcons head coach on Monday and arrived in Atlanta one day later. Tuesday afternoon, Quinn described the quick transition in moving on from Seattle to his new opportunity with the Falcons.
"It's been an absolute blast," Quinn said. "From the last 48 hours, to get a chance to compete for a championship in this game is as fun as it gets and playing in that game, although the ending was as difficult and hard as it could be, I knew the next day I was going to have an opportunity of a lifetime waiting for me here in Atlanta, and so although my focus had been on Seattle, that entire month, I knew maybe at the end of the week, here this opportunity would start, and I couldn't be more exited and more fired up to be here with you guys today as it kicks off."
New Falcons head coach Dan Quinn got a look at his new office and took a tour of Falcons headquarters in Flowery Branch on Tuesday morning before his introductory press conference in the afternoon
4. Ingredients for a Super Bowl Defense: Quinn is fresh off back-to-back Super Bowl seasons as the Seahawks defensive coordinator, including one championship in 2013. The new Falcons head coach was asked what kinds of things are required to turn his Falcons defense into the best in the league.
"Really, it starts with effort first, and that's always the thing that we'll talk about right at the forefront," Quinn said. "We want to be really aggressive in terms of the way we attack the football. ... We want to play as fast and physical as we can."
Quinn went on to say the defensive focus won't be so much on what type of defense the team plays but instead how his guys play it. First things first, however, Quinn said player evaluations begin Tuesday night. "We'll try to best feature the players that we have, and that's one of the things I'm really looking forward to getting started with now," Quinn said. "It's better to learn these guys here, so we can best feature them in the best way."
5. Message to the Fans: Blank said the decision to hire Quinn as head coach is all about championships, and the goal is the exact same for Quinn, who invited the team's fan base to be a part of a very determined and special mission.
"I know we have an extremely passionate fan base here in Atlanta," Quinn said. "I want them to know the brand of football we're going to play is going to be fast and physical. We're going to attack in every phase that we can do it. Most importantly, I would like you to know, the energy and enthusiasm that you bring to the Atlanta Falcons can be unmatched in terms of the energy I'll try to bring to you as your head football coach. It's an unbelievable opportunity. I couldn't be more proud to be here with you today. (There are) all sorts of challenges ahead, lots of hard work to do, but I can't wait to get started with all of you."
Click here to see the coordinators Quinn announced as part of his currently-forming coaching staff.