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Donnie Henderson as DC anyone?

Discussion in 'NFL Zone' started by t-rock, Jan 2, 2007.

  1. t-rock

    t-rock Member

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    Lions fire Henderson, O-line coach Beightol tooESPN.com news services

    ALLEN PARK, Mich. -- The Detroit Lions fired defensive coordinator Donnie Henderson and offensive line coach Larry Beightol on Tuesday, two days after finishing a 3-13 season.

    The overwhelming favorite to replace Henderson is Tampa Bay linebackers coach Joe Barry, who is Marinelli's son-in-law and who is highly regarded around the league. Marinelli attempted to hire Barry last year but, because he was under contract, the Bucs denied the Lions permission to speak with him. Barry's contract in Tampa Bay will expire in a few weeks.

    Lions coach Rod Marinelli announced the decisions at his final weekly press conference of the season.

    "Donnie Henderson is very close to me, and it was a very difficult decision," Marinelli said. "It was more about systems than anything else. With Coach Beightol, I just felt like we needed to make a change at this time."

    The Lions' projected five starters on the offensive line never started a single game together this season. Beightol, 64, is a 22-year NFL veteran who has worked with eight different franchises.

    Marinelli also announced that longtime special teams coach Chuck Priefer had announced his retirement.

    Priefer will be replaced by his assistant, Stan Kwan, and will work with the organization in an undetermined role.

    The Lions allowed 398 points this season. Only the 49ers (412) and the Titans (400) surrendered more. Detroit finished fifth-worst in the NFL (345.6 yards per game).

    Henderson and Marinelli have a 30-year relationship that dates to Henderson's days as a defensive back at Utah State, where Marinelli was the defensive line coach. The two coached together at California (1990-91) and Arizona State (1992-94), but never in the NFL before Detroit.

    Henderson, a 10th-round pick by the Lions in 1980, coached defensive backs in Baltimore from 1999-2003 and was the Jets' defensive coordinator from 2004-05.

    Henderson had no experience in the "Tampa Two" system that former Bucs defensive line coach Marinelli brought with him last January from Tampa.

    Information from The Associated Press and ESPN.com senior writer Len Pasquarelli was used in this report.




    from Detroit's website:

    Donnie Henderson was named the Detroit Lions defensive coordinator on January 29, 2006. Henderson joins the Lions coaching staff after spending the last two seasons as the New York Jets defensive coordinator.

    Originally hired by the New York Jets (Jan. 26, 2004), Henderson made an immediate impact on their defense in his first season. From 2003 to 2004, New York improved from 21st to seventh in total defense, 23rd to fourth in the NFL in points allowed and 28th to fifth in rushing yards allowed. The team’s 261 points allowed in 2004 was just 10 points more than the league-leading Pittsburgh Steelers, and it ranked third-best in team history. The Jets 2004 defense also garnered a league-leading seven second-half shutouts, and held nine teams under 100 yards rushing, which included just two 100-yard rushers.

    Among the seven new starters on the Jets ’04 defense was rookie LB Jonathan Vilma, who was named the 2004 Associated Press Defensive Rookie of the Year.

    Last year, the Jets defense was stellar against the pass. The unit finished second in the NFL in total passing yards allowed per game (172.2) and was fifth in interceptions (21). In total defense, the Jets were fifth in the AFC (12th in NFL) allowing 308.8 yards per game.

    Between Marinelli (Tampa Bay 1996-05) and Henderson (Baltimore 1999-03; New York Jets 2004-05), their respective defenses have ranked in the NFL’s top 10 in total defense a combined 14 out of 17 times, and in the top 15 in 16 of 17 seasons. Included in that total are 11 top 5 rankings, nine top 3 rankings and six top 2 rankings.

    Prior to joining the New York Jets staff, Henderson spent five seasons with the Baltimore Ravens, and was part of the franchise’s Super Bowl XXXV championship team. He was hired as the assistant defensive backs coach in 1999 and was promoted to defensive backs coach in 2000. The Baltimore, Md., native tutored a secondary that was key in the team finishing in the top 10 in pass defense in three of the four seasons he oversaw the position group

    From 2000-03, the Ravens recorded 88 interceptions, which tied for the second-most in the league over those four seasons. Among the players he coached were three Pro Bowlers (S Rod Woodson, CB Chris McAlister and S Ed Reed), which represented Baltimore in the league’s annual all-star game a combined four times during Henderson’s tenure as defensive backs coach.

    In 2000, Baltimore set new NFL defensive standards as they went on to claim the Super Bowl title. The team established a new 16-game record for fewest points allowed (165) and fewest rushing yards allowed (970). The secondary, led by Woodson, who was named to his ninth Pro Bowl that season, set a team mark with 23 interceptions. The Ravens defense led the NFL with 49 takeaways and allowed an NFL-low 11 touchdown passes in 20 games (regular season and post-season). The secondary recorded 12 interceptions (two in postseason), six forced fumbles and six fumble recoveries.

    Before entering the NFL coaching ranks, Henderson served as the defensive backs and assistant head coach at the University of Houston in 1998. Henderson spent six seasons (1992-97) with the Arizona State coaching staff, coaching safeties from 1992-94 and defensive backs from 1995-97. He spent two years (1990-91) coaching linebackers at the University of California, and he served on the same defensive coaching staff as Marinelli, who was with the Golden Bears football program from 1983-91. Henderson was defensive backs coach and recruiting coordinator at the University of Idaho in 1989.

    Henderson’s coaching career began at his alma mater, Utah State, in 1983 as a graduate assistant. He took over the Aggies’ linebackers in 1986 and was an assistant coach at Utah State from 1983-88.

    Henderson played two seasons at Santa Monica Junior College before transferring to Utah State, where he earned first-team all-PCAA honors as a senior cornerback. While playing at Utah State, Marinelli was the Aggies defensive line coach. He was selected by the Detroit Lions in the 1980 NFL draft. Born in Baltimore, Md., Henderson attended Locke High School in Los Angeles, Calif.

    Detroit Lions 2006
    Defensive Coordinator 2006

    New York Jets 2004-05
    Defensive Coordinator 2004-05

    Baltimore Ravens 1999-03
    Defensive Backs 2000-03
    Assistant Defensive Backs 1999

    Houston 1998
    Assistant Head Coach/Defensive Backs 1998

    Arizona State 1992-97
    Defensive Backs 1995-97
    Safeties 1992-94

    California 1990-91
    Linebackers 1990-91

    Idaho 1989
    Defensive Backs/Recruiting Coordinator 1989

    Utah State 1983-88
    Linebackers 1986-88
    Graduate Assistant 1983-85
  2. CanadianCowboysFan

    CanadianCowboysFan Lightning Rod

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    Yeah after all Detroit is such a great defence NOT
  3. Alexander

    Alexander What's it going to be then, eh?

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    Wasn't Henderson a golden boy a while back? I seem to remember people talking about him when he was with the Jets.
  4. cowboyz

    cowboyz Active Member

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    ABZ I say

    beightol would be a great guy to get he's the one responsible for the great green bay olines. maybe he can teach the oline a thing or 2, otherwise they'll be losing out on developing great talent like rob pettiti.
  5. burmafrd

    burmafrd Well-Known Member

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    No experience with the defense they had and only given one season. Not exactly a good situation. If he was with the Ravens for the formation of their great D then he certainly deserves a look.
  6. Da Hammer

    Da Hammer The Natural

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    i really dont know much about him except that he was highly regarded when he was with the Jets and i believe they ran the 3-4 so maybe he would be a good fit here so he could run a real 3-4 defense. i cant really blame for failing in detroit as he was running a different D that he had never ran in the tampa 2.

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