According to a source, offensive play caller Scott Linehan agreed to terms on a contract extension with the Cowboys late Wednesday night, keeping him in Dallas for the 2015 season.
The deal with Linehan means that the important brain trust of head coach Jason Garrett, defensive coordinator Rod Marinelli and Linehan, who was the passing game coordinator and called plays on offense, will remain in place to help the Cowboys build on the success they had in 2014.
Linehan’s arrival in Dallas last spring is linked directly to the makeover the Cowboys had on offense, as they moved from a pass-happy attack to a run-oriented unit to wild success, ranking fifth in the league in scoring and seventh in yards.
Running back DeMarco Murray led the league with a team-record 1,845 rushing yards. Quarterback Tony Romo had the best season of his career, leading the NFL in quarterback rating, completion percentage and yards per attempt.
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Receiver Dez Bryant caught 88 passes for 1,320 yards and a league-leading 16 touchdowns. All three made the Pro Bowl as did three members of the team’s domimant offensive, tackle Tyron Smith, center Travis Frederick and guard Zack Martin.
Linehan proved to be the straw that stirred the drink for the league’s most balanced offense that was the foundation to the team’s run to the NFC East title with a 12-4 mark and their first playoff win since 2009.
“Came in here with a system of football that was in place with a lot of players and coaches that were in place and fit himself in and led that offensive unit really, really well and I just think what he was able to do of maximizing the coaches and the players on that offensive side of the ball was just fantastic,” Garrett said.
Linehan was successful in 2014 while balancing the sticky transition of taking over play-calling duties from offensive line coach/offensive coordinator Bill Callahan, who ran on the offense completely in 2013.
Callahan has yet to come to come to terms on a new deal for 2015, as he is drawing interest from a number teams to be their offensive coordinator with full play-calling duties.
If Callahan leaves, look for Linehan to assume the role as offensive coordinator in Dallas with assistant offensive line coach Frank Pollack taking over as offensive line coach.