Dennis Allen and Mike Nolan
The premier names on this coaching staff are the ones who’ve been head coaches elsewhere. Dennis Allen had been a defensive backs coach with the Saints before getting the opportunity to be the defensive coordinator in Denver. He then became the head coach of the Oakland Raiders for two full seasons and four games into the 2014 season when he was fired. Allen has been responsible for orchestrating the controlled chaos that is this Saints defense
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Mike Nolan is the son of former Saints head coach Dick Nolan, so he came into the league with some pedigree. Nolan could be the most important addition to the coaching staff this year, that one piece that glued everything else together.
Nolan has had many stops in his 30+ years of coaching. But his most prolific work was his 17 years as a defensive coordinator, and his one head coaching gig at San Francisco. In his coordinator stops, he coached the likes of Ed Reed and Ray Lewis, each of them earning Defensive Player of the Year honors in consecutive years.
In San Francisco he coached Patrick Willis who was one of the best linebackers of that time. Before coming to the Saints, Nolan was the coordinator for Mike Smith in Atlanta before Dan Quinn came in. He then spent one year in San Diego coaching linebackers, so he’s largely to thank for us gaining the services of Manti Te’o.