Cowboys defensive tackle Amobi Okoye sees defensive coordinator Rod Marinelli as a sort of ninja master. A ninja master who also happens to be a human-sized rat, but a ninja master nonetheless.
“I call him Master Splinter, because he is Master Splinter,” Okoye told the team’s official website this week, referring to the leader of the Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles. “He’s a heck of a teacher, makes you become a student of the game and a master of your craft.”
Okoye played under Marinelli for two seasons in Chicago, in 2011 and 2012. Like fellow Bear-turned-Cowboy Henry Melton, the opportunity to reunite with Marinelli in Dallas was a major draw. So what makes Marinelli so beloved by his players?
“His drive, his willingness to teach,” said Okoye, who added that Marinelli is “by far” the best position coach and defensive coordinator he’s had. “He makes sure you know your strengths and your weaknesses and that you’re exploiting your strengths and that you’re bettering your weaknesses.”
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