Titans promote from within for OC, DC jobs

Titans promote from within for OC, DC jobs

Tennessee Titans head coach Mike Vrabel filled two key positions on his coaching staff Friday, promoting tight ends coach Todd Downing to offensive coordinator and Shane Bowen to defensive coordinator.

Downing replaces Arthur Smith, now the head coach of the Atlanta Falcons.

Bowen unofficially led the defense in the 2020 season as outside linebackers coach.

Additionally, Vrabel promoted Luke Steckel to tight ends coach, Ryan Crow to outside linebackers coach and Matt Edwards to assistant special teams coach. The team also named newcomer Kenechi Udeze as an assistant defensive line coach.

“I spent the last two weeks evaluating our current staff and talking with others outside our organization. I am excited for all of these guys taking the next step with us,” Vrabel said. “Todd did a great job with the tight ends over the last two years and had important role in the game-planning process each week. I was impressed with the details of his teaching and the production from his group and the offense in general. I am sure he will have some new ideas to implement, but the core system will be in place to build upon, which I think is important.

“Shane will move into the dedicated role of coordinator, with Ryan taking over the outside linebackers this year, and I am looking forward to him growing in that role. We are going to work hard to improve that side of the ball through better coaching, improving our system and our players. I like the group we have on the defensive staff and I am confident that we will improve.”

Vrabel concluded his third year as Titans coach in 2020. Tennessee made the playoffs the past two seasons, losing to the Kansas City Chiefs in the AFC Championship Game in 2019 and being eliminated by the Baltimore Ravens in the wild-card round in 2020 after an 11-5 season.

Downing joined Vrabel’s staff in 2019. He has 20 years of NFL coaching experience and was the then-Oakland Raiders’ offensive coordinator in 2017.

Bowen has five years of NFL coaching experience — three in Tennessee and two with the Houston Texans.

He called the plays in 2020, and the Titans were seventh in the NFL in takeaways with 23 and also seventh in interceptions with 15.


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