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Cowboys Coach Dan Quinn Not Going to Broncos; Hire Means Packers Trade for Aaron Rodgers?

Dan Quinn isn't going anywhere ... yet. The NFL Coaching Carousel spins ...
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The Denver Broncos sifted through 10 candidates, then whittled down to three their list, all along thinking Dallas Cowboys defensive coordinator Dan Quinn was the guy worthy of being "zeroed in on.''

But early Thursday morning, the decision was made that separated Quinn and the third candidate, Los Angeles Rams offensive coordinator Kevin O'Connell from the job-winner, Nathaniel Hackett of the Green Bay Packers.

And maybe the reason is Aaron Rodgers of the Green Bay Packers.

Hackett had a second interview with the Broncos, as Quinn was scheduled to do. But apparently before Hackett could leave to visit with Jacksonville about its vacancy, Denver GM George Paton - who happens to be close to Quinn - offered him a contract.

Quinn was expected to fly to Denver sometime this week for his second interview, but now that's off.

As it relates to the Cowboys and Quinn, the move takes one potential destination off the table, so in theory that increases the tiny odds that he remains in Dallas. But he is a finalist with the Chicago Bears, is on the wish list of the Miami Dolphins and others, and has spent time with his hometown team, the New York Giants.

As it relates to another big picture: Just as Quinn in Denver was tied by gossip to the possibility that his friendship with Russell Wilson might lure the QB out of Seattle via trade, Paton's interest in Hackett surely has something to do with the coach's potential for luring veteran quarterback Aaron Rodgers out of Green Bay - where obviously Hackett once coached him - to Denver.

Rodgers is a fan of Hackett and as gushed about his old offensive coordinator's worthiness to be a head coach.

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"This is a little overdue, to be honest," Rodgers said Tuesday on The Pat McAfee Show. "He's been around the game a long time. What he did in Jacksonville, I think, was pure magic, getting them within a quarter of the Super Bowl. He's a great coach. I love spending time with him. He's a fantastic teacher. He's incredible in front of the room."

It is a disservice to Hackett to think that his relationship with Rodgers is his only resume highlight. (It's also possible that the Broncos have learned that Quinn plans to go elsewhere.) But Rodgers has wanted to leave Green Bay for a year. The Broncos have flirted with trying to acquire him for a year. There has been a gap there ... and now, in Hackett, there is a bridge there.

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