Staley joins notable group of Flyer alums to become NFL head coach

Brandon Staley takes over a Chargers team which finished 7-9, losing seven games by 8 points or less. Photo by Jevone Moore/Icon Sportswire via Getty Images

Peter Burtnett
Sports Editor

Quarterback for the University of Dayton football team in 2003-04, Brandon Staley became the latest former Flyer to join the NFL head coaching ranks Jan. 17, when he was named head coach of the Los Angeles Chargers.

The Perry, Ohio, native compiled a 16-5 record as starting quarterback at UD. However, after his college career, Staley turned to the defensive side of the ball, and spent time as an assistant coach at the collegiate level (Northern Illinois, St. Thomas, Hutchinson, Tennessee, John Carroll, and James Madison) before moving to the NFL.

Staley spent two seasons (2017-18) as the Chicago Bears’ outside linebacker coach, and had the same position for the 2019 Denver Broncos, before being the defensive coordinator for the Los Angeles Rams last year.

The Rams defense was considered by many to be the best defense in the NFL, ranking first in passing yards allowed, first in points allowed and third in rushing yards.

Now, Staley joins 1986 UD grad Jon Gruden (Oakland Raiders) as the second current NFL head coach. Legendary Pittsburgh Steelers head coach Chuck Noll was also a Flyer.

Staley will look to continue the Flyers’ knack for winning Super Bowls (Noll in 1974, ’75, ’78 and ’79; Gruden in 2002) with a team primed for future success coming off a 7-9 season with second-year quarterback Justin Herbert.

“It’s hard to put into words just how excited I am for the opportunity to be the Los Angeles Chargers’ head coach,” Staley said in a statement. “While this is certainly a dream come true, it’s also a dream that’s just beginning. There’s a reason this was probably the most sought after job out there — from ownership, to the fans, to the city, to the men in that locker room — it’s the total package. I can’t thank the Spanos family and Tom Telesco enough for placing their faith in us, and by the time everyone is reading this quote in a press release, we’ll already be hard at work developing a program Chargers fans everywhere can be proud of.”

The Chargers’ twitter page also shared an introduction to their new head coach.

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