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Bills hire special teams coordinator
Orchard Park, NY - The Buffalo Bills today announced that Danny Crossman has been hired as the team's special teams coordinator.
Crossman will enter his 11th year as an NFL coach in 2013 and ninth as a special teams coordinator.
From 2010-12, Crossman presided over the Detroit Lions' special teams unit after seven years with the Carolina Panthers (2003-09), including the final five as their special teams coordinator. Crossman entered the NFL with Carolina in 2003 as a special teams assistant while also assisting the team's strength and conditioning program.
In 2012, Lions K Jason Hanson posted a career-high and set a franchise record with 134 points. During Crossman's tenure with Detroit from 2010-12, S John Wendling tied for the NFL-lead with 51 special teams tackles.
In his first year with the Lions in 2010, the kick return unit was the third-most improved in the League with an average 3.5 more yards per return than in 2009. Returner Stefan Logan posted the fifth-best punt return average in the NFL (12.1). Detroit also had the NFL's 10th-most significant improvement in punt return average in 2010 - a jump from an 8.8 punt return average in 2009 to 12.1 yards per punt return in 2010.
During Crossman's stint with the Panthers from 2003-09, the team's kicking and cover groups contributed to the team's success which included three playoff appearances (2003, 2005 and 2008), two NFC South titles in 2003 and 2008. The Panthers also finished with at least eight wins in five of those seven years.
The Panthers ranked third in the NFL in 2008 with an opponent average drive start after kickoffs (24.7) and were one of three teams that did not allow an opponent to start a drive following a kickoff past the 50-yard line. Carolina posted a league-best 30 touchbacks, 33.7 touchback percentage and ninth with an opponent kickoff return average (21.9).
In his first year as a special teams coordinator in 2005, Crossman's unit ranked among the best in the NFL. The Panthers finished ninth in the Dallas Morning News special teams ratings which were highlighted with a second place finish in punt coverage and seventh in kickoff coverage. Crossman helped guide P Jason Baker to set the franchise record in net punting average in both 2005 (38.9) and 2006 (39.0). In both years, Baker's net punting average was first in the NFC and third in the NFL. From 2005-09, Baker ranked eighth in the NFL with a combined net punting average of 38.0.
Prior to entering the NFL coaching ranks, Crossman spent 10 years coaching in college, including Michigan State (2002), Georgia Tech (1999-2001), Central Florida (1997-98), Western Kentucky (1994-96) and U.S. Coast Guard Academy (1993).