As coaching staffs around the NFL continue to get filled out following offseason changes, several of those spots are being filled with coaches who have connections to the Pittsburgh Steelers.
Last week, the Cleveland Browns hired former Steelers coaches Ray Horton and Kirby Wilson and on Tuesday, the Tennessee Titans announced the hiring of Russ Grimm as their new offensive line coach and Deshea Townsend as their new defensive backs coach.
Grimm, a former NFL All-Pro offensive lineman, was the Steelers offensive line coach from 2001–2006. When former Steelers head coach Bill Cowher stepped down at the conclusion of the 2006 season, several believed that Grimm would be the one to replace him. However, that turned out not to be the case and after Mike Tomlin was hired to replace Cowher, Grimm followed former Steelers offensive coordinator Ken Whisenhunt to the Arizona Cardinals to be their offensive line coach. After the 2012 season, Grimm and Whisenhunt were both fired by the Cardinals.
As for Townsend, he played cornerback for the Steelers for 11 seasons after being drafted by Pittsburgh in the fourth round of the 1998 NFL Draft out of Alabama. After his playing days were over, Townsend became the assistant defensive backs coach of the Cardinals in 2011. In January 2013, he was hired to be the cornerbacks coach at Mississippi State and he held that job for three seasons.
As previously reported, former Steelers defensive coordinator Dick LeBeau took over that same job with the Titans just last week after Horton bolted for the Browns. He will work under new Titans head coach Mike Mularkey, who was once the Steelers offensive coordinator from (2001–2003).