The Buffalo Bills reached agreement on Friday night with former Detroit Lions coach Jim Schwartz to become their defensive coordinator.
The Bills also announced that they agreed to terms with Todd Downing as their quarterbacks coach. Nathaniel Hackett served in a dual role as offensive coordinator and quarterbacks coach last season.
Schwartz was fired last month by the Lions after five seasons as head coach. Detroit made the playoff just once, in 2011, under his direction.
He replaces Mike Pettine, who accepted the head coaching job with the Cleveland Browns on Thursday after one year as Buffalo's defensive coordinator.
The 47-year-old Schwartz previously was the defensive coordinator with the Tennessee Titans from 2001 to 2008. He served as an assistant with the Titans for two seasons until he was elevated to the coordinator position. Before that, he worked under Bill Belichick with the Cleveland Browns as a scout and then as a defensive assistant for the Baltimore Ravens.
"We are excited to add a talented and accomplished coordinator in Jim Schwartz to our staff,"Bills coach Doug Marrone said. "Schwartz has led aggressive and productive defensive units throughout his time in the NFL and we feel our defense will continue to improve under his leadership."
Downing, 33, was the quarterbacks coach on Schwartz's Lions staff from 2011 to 2013.
"Todd Downing is a bright and energetic coach. He is familiar with our personnel at the quarterback position and he will play a key role in the development of all of the quarterbacks on the Bills' roster," Bills coach Doug Marrone said. "He played a pivotal role in the development of Detroit’s quarterbacks during his tenure -- most notably Matthew Stafford, the franchise's all-time leading passer. Downing will be a valuable addition to our offensive coaching staff.”
Downing came to Detroit in 2009 as an offensive quality control coach and was elevated to assistant quarterbacks coach in 2010. His first NFL jobs were with the Minnesota Vikings as the offensive quality control coach (2005) and football systems analyst (2003-04)
By The Sports Xchange
Publish Date: January 24, 2014 10:09:16 PM
Former Lions coach Schwartz named Bills' DC
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