Todd Storm

Commanders Notes: Izzo, Norton, Pagano

The Commanders have landed on their new special teams coordinator. Ben Standig of The Athletic reported last week that the team has hired Larry Izzo as their new ST coordinator.

Izzo earned three Super Bowl rings and three Pro Bowl nods as a special teams ace in New England, and he caught on to the coaching ranks shortly after retiring. He had a two-year stint as special teams coordinator with the Texans before joining the Seahawks staff in 2018.

He spent the past six seasons in Seattle, half of which he served as the team’s special teams coordinator. Izzo’s units ranked top-10 in FTN’s DVOA (subscription required) during each of his three seasons at the helm.

With Pete Carroll out in Seattle, his staff was free to seek jobs elsewhere. Izzo was a hot name in this hiring cycle, and he’s ultimately landed with Dan Quinn’s staff in Washington.

More coaching notes out of Washington…

  • As Joe Whitt Jr. prepares for his first defensive coordinator job, he’s adding some experience to his defensive staff. According to NFL Network’s Tom Pelissero, the Commanders have hired Ken Norton Jr. as their new linebackers coach. The former Cowboys and 49ers star had a three-year stint as the Raiders defensive coordinator before spending four years leading the Seahawks defense. After getting fired by Seattle following the 2021 campaign, he caught on as UCLA’s DC.
  • Elsewhere on defense, the Commanders are adding John Pagano in an unknown role (via Benjamin Allbright of KOA in Colorado) and Jason Simmons as their defensive pass-game coordinator (via ESPN’s Jeremy Fowler). Pagano previously served as the Chargers and Raiders defensive coordinator, and he most recently spent time as the Broncos outside linebackers coach. Simmons spent almost a decade on the Packers coaching staff before recently serving as the Panthers and Raiders pass-game coordinators. Simmons was rumored to be joining Washington’s staff following Whitt’s hiring.
  • On the offensive side of the ball, the Commanders are hiring Bobby Johnson as their offensive line coach, per Pelissero. The veteran coach has spent more than a decade guiding tight ends and offensive linemen, including the past two as the Giants OLs coach. The Commanders will also be retaining Tavita Pritchard as their quarterbacks coach, per Nicki Jhabvala of the Washington Post. Pritchard garnered interest from other teams, but the Commanders pushed to keep him after he impressed in meetings with Quinn and new offensive coordinator Kliff Kingsbury.
  • Jhabvala passes along a handful of Commanders coaches who won’t be returning in 2024: tight ends coach Todd Storm, run game coordinator Juan Castillo, offensive line coach Travelle Wharton, and senior defensive assistant/safeties coach Richard Rodgers.

Coaching Notes: Raiders, Castillo, Colts

The Raiders have made four new additions to their coaching staff for the offseason, naming their Bill Walsh Diversity Coaching Fellows. On offense, Las Vegas will be mentoring Torrey Gill. On defense, Jamie Sharper and Troy Vincent Jr. will be joining the staff. Lastly, Matt Willis was hired with a focus on special teams.

Gill is currently an offensive graduate assistant at Oregon State. He’s previously coached wide receivers at New Mexico State and Whittier College after playing the position at Itawamba Community College and NAIA Tabor College.

Sharper is former Super Bowl champion linebacker for the Ravens who spent time with the Texans and Seahawks, as well. He just finished the 2022 XFL season where he worked as the special teams coordinator and linebackers coach for the DC Defenders. He previously worked as a scouting intern for Houston before serving as linebackers and defensive line coach for Georgetown.

Vincent is the son of NFL Executive Vice President of Football Operations, Troy Vincent. His career has thus far consisted mainly of roles in Georgia high school football.

Willis is a former NFL wide receiver who spent time with the Ravens, Broncos, and Lions. He’s had two other stints with the fellowship, working with the Bears in 2017 and 2018.

Here are a few other rumors from around the NFL:

  • The Commanders have made some minor adjustments to their offensive staff, according to Ben Standig of The Athletic. Juan Castillo, who was hired to coach tight ends despite his wealth of experience with the offensive line, has been working more with the offensive line at camp recently. They expect that he will be “toggling between the two positions” under the new title of run-game coordinator. The current assistant offensive line coach, Travelle Wharton, is expected to be promoted to offensive line coach, while Todd Storm will remove the “assistant” from his title to become tight ends coach.
  • Colts head coach Shane Steichen has added a new assistant to his staff, according to Mike Chappell of FOX59/CBS4 Sports. The staff now rosters Charlie Gelman, who will serve as game manager.

NFC Coaching Notes: 49ers, Buccaneers, Falcons

After getting canned as Jaguars special teams coordinator, Nick Sorensen has found a new gig in San Francisco. The veteran coach will join the 49ers staff as a defensive assistant, reports Aaron Wilson of Prior to his one-year stint on the Jaguars coaching staff, Sorensen had a stint with the Seahawks as their special teams assistant and assistant secondary coach.

The 49ers are also hiring Stephen Adegoke as a defensive quality control coach (per Charean Williams of Adegoke last served as a graduate assistant on the University of Michigan’s staff.

Meanwhile, Matt Maiocco of NBC Sports Bay Area reports that veteran running backs coach Bobby Turner is stepping away from his role with the 49ers, although the 72-year-old isn’t necessarily retiring. Turner has been a RBs coach in the NFL since 1995, and he’s been with the 49ers since 2017. Former Chargers head coach Anthony Lynn, who joined the 49ers as assistant head coach, is expected to work closely with the running backs.

More coaching notes out of the NFC…

  • The Buccaneers announced that Larry Foote will move from outside linebackers coach to inside linebackers coach (via The Athletic’s Greg Auman on Twitter). Veteran assistant Bob Sanders, who worked with head coach Bruce Arians in Arizona, will be taking over as OLBs coach. Auman also tweets that the Buccaneers hired two new quality control coaches in Jeff Kastl (offense) and Joey Fitzgerald (defense).
  • The Commandeers announced today that they’ve promoted four coaches (via Williams): Todd Storm (offensive quality control coach to assistant tight ends coach), Luke Del Rio (offensive quality control coach to assistant quarterbacks coach/offensive quality control), Vincent Rivera (defensive quality control to assistant linebackers coach/defensive quality control), and Cristian Garcia (coaching intern to defensive quality control coach).
  • The Falcons are hiring Steven King as a special teams assistant, according to ESPN’s Michael Rothstein (via Twitter). King served as the Tar Heels special teams quality control coach in 2021. He’ll report to Falcons special teams coordinator Marquice Williams.
  • Mark DeLeone is out as the Lions inside linebackers coach, reports Tim Twentyman of the team’s website (on Twitter). Kelvin Sheppard, who spent last season as outside linebackers coach, will move to inside linebackers coach. Meanwhile, following the promotion of Ben Johnson to offensive coordinator, Tanner Engstrand will be the Lions new tight ends coach.
  • Ramsen Golpashin, who recently served as an offensive line and defensive line analyst with UCLA, will join the Packers staff as an offensive quality control coach, per Bruce Feldman of The Athletic (on Twitter). Golpashin has also become a hot name on the draft circuit, working with top linemen prospects like Ickey Ekwonu and Aidan Hutchinson.

Redskins Announce 16 Coaching Hires

New Redskins head coach Ron Rivera had already brought in new coordinators on both sides of the ball (Scott Turner on offense, Jack Del Rio on defense), and he’s now filled out the rest of his staff. Rivera and Washington announced the following 16 hires earlier today:

  • Pete Hoener, tight ends
  • Jim Hostler, wide receivers
  • Randy Jordan, running backs
  • John Matsko, offensive line
  • Drew Terrell, assistant wide receivers
  • Travelle Wharton, assistant offensive line
  • Ken Zampese, quarterbacks
  • Chris Harris, defensive backs
  • Sam Mills III, defensive line
  • Richard Rodgers, assistant defensive backs
  • Steve Russ, linebackers
  • Brent Vieselmeyer, assistant defensive backs
  • Luke Del Rio, offensive quality control
  • Ben Jacobs, assistant special teams
  • Vincent Rivera, defensive quality control
  • Todd Storm, offensive quality control

Both Hostler and Zampese have both previously served as offensive coordinators. Hostler was the 49ers’ OC for a single season in 2007 under head coach Mike Nolan, but was fired after only one year at the helm. Zampese, meanwhile, was the Bengals’ offensive playcaller in 2016 and part of 2017 before being let go. He’s since coached for the Browns, the AAF’s Atlanta Legends, and the University of Florida.

Unsurprisingly, a number of new Redskins coached worked under Rivera in Carolina, including Hoener, Hostler, Matsko, Terrell, Wharton, Mills, Rodgers, and Russ.