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Scott Turner Was 11 When His Dad Began Coaching The Redskins. Now He's Their Offensive Coordinator.


Scott Turner had not even started high school when FedExField hosted its first game on Sept. 14, 1997.

Going to Redskins games and donning the burgundy and gold had become a regular occurrence for Turner. After all, his father, Norv Turner, had been the head coach for the past three seasons, so he often found his way onto the home sideline for the best view to watch his family's team on Sunday afternoons.

That day, he and 78,270 fans watched as the Redskins took on the Arizona Cardinals and won, 19-13. As he followed his father's footsteps to become an NFL coach, the path took him back to FedExField a couple of times, the last of which came on Nov. 13, 2016, when he was the quarterbacks coach for the Minnesota Vikings.

The next time he goes to FedExField will be special, though, because he'll be wearing the burgundy and gold once again, this time as the offensive coordinator. He'll be at Redskins Park for the foreseeable future, and he couldn't be happier to come back to the area that means so much to him.

"When I tell people where I'm from, it's here," Turner told Voice of the Redskins Larry Michael on "Redskins Nation." "This is home for me."

In a lot of ways, Turner considers himself lucky. NFL coaches tend to move around quite a bit throughout their careers, which means their families go along for the ride. Turner briefly lived in Dallas while his father was the Cowboys' offensive coordinator, but once Norv was brought in to be the Redskins' head coach, he held the position for seven seasons. That took Turner from fifth grade all the way to his senior year of high school.

Turner started to craft his own success in those years. He attended Oakton High School in Vienna, Virginia, where he went from giving advice to then-Cougars head coach Pete Bendorf to being a star quarterback.

"For a 14-year old kid, he showed me early that he's got a great understanding," Bendorf told The Washington Post in a 2000 story. "It's a strength, but sometimes he has the tendency to overanalyze."

That strength showed itself in all kinds of places, even in the Turner household dating all the way back to Norv's days with the Cowboys.

"I went up to say good night, and he said, 'Dad? Why? Why on third-and-five would you throw a ball for a three-yard gain?'" Norv told the Post in 1994. "I said, 'Sometimes things don't work out the way you plan'em.'"

Those conversations continued throughout Turner's life -- they still happen to this day -- and they have helped him shape his coaching identity.

"I've tried to go towards my personality strength," Turner said. "I've learned a lot from him as far as offensive strategy, how to attack a defense, how to evaluate a defense, how to evaluate your own players."

That, combined with spending so much time around the Redskins, continued to grow Turner's love for football. So when it was time for him to choose a career path, coaching was an easy choice.

"I always just loved football ... and it didn't take me long to realize I was gonna have to stop playing at some point," Turner said with a smile. "So the natural process was to get into coaching. As soon as I got done playing [at UNLV], I just got right into coaching."

Like his father, Turner became an offensive coach. He bounced around the NFL and landed with the Vikings, Cleveland Browns and Carolina Panthers on two occasions. He is known for getting the best out of players like Teddy Bridewater, Cam Newton, Sam Bradford and Josh Gordon, all of which had some of their best statistical season with him as their position coach.

Turner said he and his father are their own people, but he does think there are some similarities between their coaching styles. There might be some differences, even though he can't quite place what they could be.

"Maybe a little more cerebral with it," Turner said. "He is, too. It's hard to compare."

But now Turner has his first shot at being an offensive coordinator with the Redskins, and his father couldn't be happier about the news.

"He's really excited, it's a great deal," Turner said. "He'll be out here I'm sure once we get OTAs going. He'll be around, and I'm gonna lean on him like I have my whole career. He's excited, and it honestly couldn't have been a better place for me."

Turner has been busy since he was officially announced as the Redskins’ offensive coordinator on Wednesday afternoon. He's been helping head coach Ron Rivera fill out the staff, which he said should be finalized sometime next week.

But Turner can't deny that coming back to what was basically his childhood home is a surreal feeling. He was getting taped to benches or getting dumped in ice buckets the last time he was at Redskins training camp, and now he'll be calling the shots on offense.

Turner is prepared for the work, though. He's excited to be back after being away for almost two decades, and based on how much his phone has blown up since his return, it sounds like the local community is happy to have him back, too.

"I've been at different places in college and in the NFL, and to have my first shot being a coordinator in the NFL being back here [is surreal]," Turner said. "I've had people reach out to me, my high school coach, different people that I hadn't heard from in years just welcoming me back to the area. It means a lot."