The Bills lost their defensive coordinator to a head coaching job on Thursday, but it didn’t take long to replace him.
The team has announced that former Lions head coach Jim Schwartz is joining Doug Marrone’s staff as the team’s new defensive coordinator. Schwartz was fired by the Lions after the end of the regular season after compiling a 29-51 record over five years as the head coach in Detroit.
“We are excited to add a talented and accomplished coordinator in Jim Schwartz to our staff,” Marrone said in a statement. “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.”
Schwartz was the defensive coordinator in Tennessee from 2001-2008 before moving on to Detroit and there aren’t too many guys with that kind of experience available to run a defense right now. He inherits a unit that finished second in the league in sacks and interceptions, but struggled badly against the run. Schwartz’s units in Tennessee were very strong in that area, which could bode well for Buffalo.
The Bills also announced that Todd Downing has been hired as the quarterbacks coach. Downing worked for Schwartz in Detroit for the last five years and spent the last three years as the team’s quarterbacks coach. The Bills didn’t have a quarterbacks coach last season, but Marrone said he planned to hire one to help oversee E.J. Manuel heading into the first-round pick’s second season.