New Jacksonville Jaguars football boss Tom Coughlin began putting his stamp on the coaching staff this weekend with the hiring of offensive line coach Pat Flaherty.
Flaherty, a Delone Catholic High School graduate, was a Coughlin assistant for 12 years with the New York Giants.
Flaherty was a standout center at East Stroudsburg and started his major college coaching career as a graduate assistant at Penn State, helping the Nittany Lions to the 1982 national title.
Flaherty, 60, spent this year with the San Francisco 49ers. He has 37 years of coaching experience and joined the NFL in 2000 with Washington.
Flaherty will be the Jaguars’ fifth offensive line coach in six years; he replaces Doug Marrone, who was promoted to head coach.
“[Flaherty’s] credentials are impeccable and his vast knowledge and teaching ability will be a great benefit for our offensive linemen,” said Coughlin, hired Monday as executive vice president of football operations.
In a statement released by the team, Marrone said Flaherty, “will help develop our group into a tough, physical unit, which will be key to our success for this year and for years to come. As I have mentioned before, building through the trenches will be a key for our team going forward, and with the addition of Pat, we are making a major step in the right direction in that area.”
In Flaherty’s 12 years with the Giants, New York won two Super Bowls (2007 and 2011) and allowed 354 sacks, the fourth-lowest total in the league. The Jaguars allowed 515 during that span, second-most in the NFL.
Among the Flaherty-coached players to be named to the Pro Bowl were Shaun O’Hara, Chris Snee and David Diehl.
With the Jaguars, Flaherty inherits a line that is anchored by center Brandon Linder, but has question marks at left tackle (until Kelvin Beachum’s option is picked up), left guard (five different starters this year, including Luke Joeckel, who is a free agent coming off an ACL/MCL injury) and must get more consistent play from right guard A.J. Cann and right tackle Jermey Parnell.