The Buccaneers announced that five individuals would be joining the organization via the The Bill Walsh Diversity Coaching Fellowship: Trai Essex, La’Roi Glover, Andre King, Heather Marini, and Louis Murphy Jr.. These coaches will be allowed to “observe, participate, [and] gain experience” throughout training camp and the preseason, and the experience could ultimately lead to a job offer.
Marini made a name for herself this past season at Brown University as the QB coach, making her the first female position coach in Division I history. Marini previously served as an offensive quality control coach with the Bears, and she served as a scout on Todd Bowles’ staff with the Jets.
Essex and Grover had distinguished careers in the NFL. Grover made six Pro Bowls and was a member of the 2000s All-Decade Team while Essex won a pair of Super Bowls with the Steelers (while playing under current Bucs head coach Bruce Arians). King also has experience playing under Arians, with the two having spent four seasons together in Cleveland.
Murphy Jr. has the best connection to the Buccaneers after spending a few years playing for the organization. The receiver had 41 receptions for 578 yards during his two seasons in Tampa Bay, and that was part of a nine-year career that saw him collecting 2,589 yards from scrimmage and 12 touchdowns. He most recently served as a high school head coach in St. Petersburg, Florida.
Some more notes from around the NFL:
- Jordan Matthews is set to audition for teams as a tight end, and at least one squad will have interest in the veteran. Paul Kuharsky reports (via Twitter) that the Titans are expected to kick the tires on the veteran. Tennessee could use some extra depth at the position after losing Jonnu Smith, but suitors shouldn’t expect too much from Matthews. The 28-year-old has appeared in only five games since the 2019 season, and it’s been four years since he last topped 800 receiving yards.
- Steelers QB Dwayne Haskins was involved in a dispute earlier this month that resulted in his wife facing a domestic violence charge, per ESPN’s Brooke Pryor. Kalabrya Gondrezick-Haskin is accused of punching Haskins in the mouth, leading to a “felony charge of battery and domestic violence resulting in bodily harm.” Haskins reportedly had a split upper lift and a lost tooth, but the quarterback disputed that today on Instagram. “I appreciate the concern… however I have all of my teeth,” Haskins wrote (via Pryor). “Don’t believe everything you read. Peace.”
- “We are aware of the situation but will have no comment,” the organization said in response to ESPN’s inquiry. Haskins inked a one-year deal with Pittsburgh earlier this offseason, and he’ll be competing with Mason Rudolph and Joshua Dobbs to be Ben Roethlisberger‘s primary backup.
- Earlier tonight, we posted a poll asking which head coach will be the first to lose his job. Bears head coach Matt Nagy and Broncos head coach Vic Fangio are neck-and-neck for the lead.