May 21, 2013; Irving, TX, USA; Dallas Cowboys offensive line coach Bill Callahan talks with center Travis Frederick (right) and guard Ronald Leary (65) during organized team activities at Dallas Cowboys Headquarters. Mandatory Credit: Matthew Emmons-USA TODAY Sports

Rich Gannon: Bill Callahan An Excellent Communicator


Bill Callahan has been awarded, err, handed over the reigns to the Dallas Cowboys offense. Jason Garrett was initially brought on and kept with the Cowboys because of his ‘offensive genius’ but now that seems to be questioned.

Bill Callahan led an Oakland Raiders squad to the Super Bowl roughly a decade ago, with Rich Gannon at the helm. Rich Gannon won the NFL most valuable player award for the 2002 season with the Callahan-coached Oakland Raiders And Rich Gannon thinks Callahan can turn it around.

“Bill wants to establish the running game and have a tough, physical offensive identity,” said CBS and Sirius XM NFL Radio analyst Rich Gannon. “But you have to remember that with Bill as head coach in 2002, we led the NFL in passing, and that was after we led the NFL in rushing with him as offensive coordinator in 2000. So he has that in his background, the ability to shift gears and take advantage of the personnel.”

“It takes a while to get the right personnel, in place,” Gannon said. “We know the o-line play in Dallas wasn’t very good last season. Typically, Bill has a line that is big and powerful and strong down the middle. The Cowboys weren’t anything like that last year.”

But Callahan’s best skill-set might be his communication.

“I remember in 2003 going into his office before a preseason game to share some concerns I had,” Gannon told Tom Orsborn of the Express-News. “Two weeks later, I told him, ‘I don’t think you heard a word I said.’ Well, he pulled out his notes and regurgitated verbatim what I had said. He is good about offering feedback and wants interaction with his quarterbacks.”

“When we went to play the Steelers in 2002,” Gannon said, “Bill came to me and said, “I don’t think we will be able to run the ball. They are too quick and get the angles on you, so we are going to throw it. You might be throwing it 60 times.’

“That’s how he is. He’s not going to bang his head against the wall against eight-man fronts.”

“He is a good coach. You can say, ‘But he was fired in Oakland.’ But if you look under the hood, he is a good coach, well respected in league circles.”

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