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Potential special teams coordinator candidates for Buffalo Bills

With Danny Crossman out the door, who will the Buffalo Bills bring in to coach special teams

While we should never cheer for a person losing their job, in the realm of sports it’s natural to feel uplifted when the team you root for has a chance to get better. In the wake of Danny Crossman being relieved of his duties as the special teams coordinator for the Buffalo Bills, fans have an opportunity to root for improvement.

As we’ve been up to this week, we examine a few avenues the Bills could pursue to find a new coach. In-house candidates seem sparse, but could include Matthew Smiley who was Crossman’s assistant the last two years. Smiley has been a special teams assistant in the NFL since 2013. That gives him an edge over just a few other candidates, but that doesn’t mean he should be ruled out.

The rest of the list are folks in the NFL who may be looking for work following a staff overhaul.

Special Teams Coaching Candidates

Candidate Team Position Connections Experience/Notes
Candidate Team Position Connections Experience/Notes
Jeff Rodgers Arizona ST Coordinator None STs coach since 2003. Coordinator since 2010 (Panthers, Broncos, Bears, Cardinals)
Randall McCray Arizona ST Assistant None College coach since 1991, mostly with defense. Some college STs work, but most of exp is one year with Cardinals
Keith Armstrong Atlanta ST Coordinator None Coaching since 1988. STs since 1997, all in NFL
Mayur Chaudhari Atlanta ST Assistant None 20 years exp, one season in NFL with Falcons
Darrin Simmons Cincinnati ST Coordinator None College punter. Sixteen years on ST with Bengals, six as coordinator
Brayden Coombs Cincinnati ST Assistant None Seven years with Bengals, six assisting Simmons on STs
Amos Jones Cleveland ST Coordinator None Coaching since MTV debuted (1981), some defense but mostly STs. Worked in NFL since 2007. Coordinator with Cardinals for four years before Browns
Sam Shade Cleveland ST Assistant None Defensive oriented college coach. One year exp in NFL assisting Jones
Tom McMahon Denver ST Coordinator Worked with Daboll in KC, 2012 Twenty-six years experience. Twelve in the NFL. STs coordinator for Rams, Chiefs, Colts and Broncos
Chris Gould Denver ST Assistant None Coached with Syracuse on STs for three years, four years with Broncos. Former punter and kicker with University of Virginia
Ron Zook Green Bay ST Coordinator None Coaching since the 70s, mostly in college. Former head coach (Florida, Illinois). NFL experience with STs (Steelers, Packers)
Maurice Drayton Green Bay ST Assistant None Fourteen years college exp, two years with Colts, one with Packers
Darren Rizzi Miami ST Coordinator/Associate HC With Daboll in 2011 HC at collegiate level. With Dolphins since 2010. Eight years as coordinator, two as associate HC
Marwan Maalouf Miami ST Assistant None Extraordinaly experienced for an assistant. Coaching since 2002. QC for Browns for three years, STs assistant with Ravens for four years, ST Coordinator one year with Colts in addition to Miami since 2013
Brant Boyer New York Jets ST Coordinator None LB and STs playing exp. Ten years with Dolphins, Jaguars and Browns. Captain for Jaguars and Browns. Four year assistant for Colts, three year coordinator with Jets.
Jeff Hammershmidt New York Jets ST Assistant None College exp, three years with Jets on STs. Along with Boyer, had fewest STs penalties in league from 2016-2017
Nate Kaczor Tampa Bay ST Coordinator None Extensive college experience with offense. NFL from 2008, mostly STs work. Three years coordinator for Titans, three for Buccaneers
Carlos Polk Tampa Bay ST Assistant None Linebacker and STs player for Chargers and Cowboys (eight years total). STs assistant with Chargers for three years, five with Buccaneers
Joe Pannunzio Alabama RBs With Daboll in 2017 in Alabama Extensive college STs experience. Since 1991, coached STs in all but six seasons across mutliple colleges
Scott O'Brien New England Area Scout With Daboll in NE in 2013-2014 STs coach in NFL from 1987-2015. Scout since 2015, might not be interested in coaching
Derius Swinton II N/A N/A With Daboll in KC, 2012 STs coaching experience from 2009-2017. ST coordinator for 49ers in 2016
Tracy Smith Houston ST Assistant With Daboll in Cleveland in 2010 Might not be looking to move on from Texans (no major coaching shakeups). Assistant in the league since 2010, could be looking for a promotion
Kevin O'Dea New Orleans ST Assistant With Daboll in NY, 2008 Former coordinator for Buccaneers, STs exp since 1994. Stable coaching situation but could be looking for promotion
Russ Purnell N/A N/A With McDermott in Carolina, 2015 ST exp since 1982. Jaguars coordinator from 2009-2011. Out of league since 2016 season, likely retired
Richard Rodgers Carolina Secondary With McDermott in Carolina, 2012-2016 STs coordinator for Carolina for over two years. Extensive college exp, seems to prefer defense
Ted Daisher N/A N/A Eagles with McDermott '04, '05 and '09 Out of football in 2018. Extensive exp including college and several stops as ST coordinator
Rory Segrest Arkansas Defensive line Eagles with McDermott, 2006-2010 Former coordinator for Eagles. More exp on defense. Eagles only NFL stop as QC then coordinator then defensive line. Kind of looks like McDermott
John Harbaugh Baltimore HC Eagles with McDermott, 1999-2007 STs coordinator for Eagles. Has to be fired or walk away from the Ravens first. Might not settle for ST coordinator position

As usual, many of the names above are under contract with their respective teams but could be available if strongly coveted. Sound off on your favorites, least favorites or anyone we missed in the comments.