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January 18, 2013

Dungy: Kiffin wants to add Marinelli to Cowboys' staff and move would help team but is not done yet

As the clock ticks and signs points toward the likelihood of Rod Marinelli joining the Dallas Cowboys’ staff as defensive line coach, former NFL coach Tony Dungy _ Marinelli’s former boss at Tampa Bay _ said today that such an addition would help Dallas players buy in to the new, 4-3 scheme expected to be implemented by new defensive coordinator Monte Kiffin.

Dungy, who will receive the Theodore Roosevelt Award tonight at the NCAA Convention in Grapevine, said he talked this morning with Kiffin and knows Kiffin _ another former Dungy assistant _ would like to add Marinelli to the staff but a deal is not yet in place.

“I know that’s what Monte would like to do. I don’t know if it will come to fruition,” Dungy said today at the Gaylord Texan Resort.

If it does come to fruition, Dungy said a Marinelli addition would be a boon to the Cowboys in helping players grasp the “Tampa 2” scheme Kiffin is expected to implement.

“The big part of playing the defense this way is getting people who really, really believe in it. Because you have to sell it. You have to sell it to your group. And when you have other people that believe, that makes it easier,” Dungy said, citing Marinelli as a big believe in the Kiffin’s scheme. “That’s critical. I think if Monte could get Rod, it would be a big step toward that. Toward getting another guy who really believes in that way of doing it and selling it to the players.”

In today’s talk with Kiffin, Dungy said the two discussed “things we talked about 15 years ago” when they were getting started together in Tampa.

“He was at work and talking about … doing things the right way, hustling, being perfect as much as you can be,” Dungy said. “And I think that’s what he’ll bring, more than anything. Everyone’s talking about ‘Tampa 2.’ It’s not what you do. It’s how you do it and I think that’s where he’s going to help.”

_ Jimmy Burch

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