5:04pm: Mangini’s deal will be for three years, tweets Schefter.
4:22pm: New 49ers head coach Jim Tomsula has begun to fill out his staff, as he’s added both a defensive coordinator and a tight ends coach today. Eric Mangini, who acted as San Francisco’s tight ends coach in 2014, will take over DC duties, while Tony Sparano, who served as the Raiders’ interim head coach for the latter portion of last season, will replace Mangini as TE coach (Twitter links via Adam Schefter of ESPN).
Both of the 49ers’ hires have previous head coaching experience, which will no doubt be valuable to Tomsula as he embarks upon his first HC opportunity. Despite the fact that he’s been an NFL coach since 1996, Mangini is still just 44 years old. After rising through the defensive ranks in New England, Mangini was hired as the Jets head coach in 2006, and accrued a 23-25 in three seasons at the helm. He moved on to Cleveland, where his run was less successful, as he finished with a 10-22 mark before being fired after the 2010 season. Mangini, who’s been with the Niners since 2013, also was considered for the vacant defensive coordinator positions in Oakland and Washington.
Despite being nearly ten years older than Mangini, Sparano has actually spent less time coaching in the NFL, as he broke in as a quality control coach with the Browns in 1999. He most notable time came as head coach of the Dolphins from 2008-11, when he posted a record of 29-32, but only made the playoffs once (during his first season). Sparano spent the ’12 season as the Jets’ offensive coordinator before taking over as assistant head coach/OL of the Raiders in ’13. Following Dennis Allen’s firing in September of last year, Sparano was promoted to interim head coach, and guided Oakland to a 3-9 finish.
Mangini will replace Vic Fangio, who left to take the Bears’ DC job. Mangini always employed a 3-4 front during his tenure as a head coach, so the club shouldn’t be looking at any dramatic changes in terms of scheme. Meanwhile, San Francisco is still in need of an offensive coordinator, and Alabama play-caller Lane Kiffin is considered the favorite for the job. A Kiffin hire, of course, would have Tomsula employing three former NFL head coaches on his staff.