4 Things to Know about Dan Campbell

Get to know the Detroit Lions new head coach.
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Dan Campbell signed his paperwork Wednesday, and now is officially the head coach of the Detroit Lions. 

Here are four things you should know about the new Lions head man. 

His career year as a player came in Detroit

Campbell spent three seasons with the Lions (2006-08), and while he only suited up for three total games from 2007-08, he did manage to have his best season as a pro while in Honolulu Blue. 

In his first year in Motown in '06, he played in all 16 games, and put up career-best marks in both reception yards (308) and touchdowns (four). Solid No. 2 tight end numbers from an individual that spent the majority of his 10 years in the league as a reserve.

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Only third former Lions player to end up as head coach of the franchise in Super Bowl era   

Campbell's hiring by the Lions Wednesday makes him only the third former Detroit player to become the head man of the organization during the Super Bowl era. 

The other two individuals were Dick Jauron, who served as the team's interim head coach in 2005 after Steve Mariucci was fired midseason, and Joe Schmidt, who was the team's lead boss on the sidelines from 1967-1972. 

Jauron went just 1-4 in his abbreviated stint with the organization, while Schmidt guided the Lions to a 43-34-7 mark that included a playoff appearance. 

Supporters of the franchise are surely hoping that Campbell ends up enjoying the success of Schmidt in his time in Motown, rather than that of Jauron. 

Campbell takes a lot of his coaching philosophies from Pro Football Hall of Famer Bill Parcells 

Campbell played for the two-time Super Bowl-winning head man for three seasons in Dallas (2003-05), and then got his coaching career started in Miami in 2010 while Parcells was the team's executive VP of football operations. 

Campbell's coaching philosophy was molded by the time he spent with the "Tuna" with the Cowboys and Dolphins, and reflected on it in a 2018 interview with The Sporting News

"Just from a philosophy standpoint on how you play the game -- offensively and defensively -- it was like identical,” Campbell expressed. “It’s about running the football. Your quarterback makes smart decisions. You don’t win or lose with the quarterback. Your defense is balls-to-the-wall, all-out. 

“Those are the (games) you’re winning because of your defense and (because) you’ve got time of possession with the run game. And then, when you throw it, they’re explosive passes.” 

If he becomes anything like Parcells during his tenure in the Motor City, it'll be a huge win for the organization. 

First Sean Payton assistant to be directly hired as another franchise's head coach

Until the hiring of Campbell by the Lions, the New Orleans Saints' Super Bowl-winning head man had never had one of his assistants go directly from his staff to the position of head coach with another team. 

Campbell has a big task ahead of him with trying to both restore the culture in the locker  room and get the team to play a winning brand of football after three straight losing campaigns. 

He was well-received by the players he coached in New Orleans, including future Pro Football Hall of Famer and Super Bowl-winning quarterback Drew Brees. 

Brees shared with ESPN that Campbell possesses "great leadership qualities" and is respected by individuals inside the locker room. 

"He’s a guy who played a long time, so he’s got a level of respect coming from guys for how he played -- he’s a tough, physical guy. He just really cares about his players. You can see that in the way he talks to us, talks to his position group. He’s just got a lot of great leadership qualities in that way. And, I think he’s just a good person," Brees told ESPN. 

Detroit principal owner Sheila Ford Hamp & Co. are certainly hoping that Campbell carries those qualities with him into his role as head coach.