Today, the Ravens have filled another vacancy on their coaching staff by naming Steve Spagnuolo as their new secondary coach.
He takes over this position which has been open for a while after Teryl Austin––the former secondary coach––was named the defensive coordinator of the Detroit Lions. He joined the staff of Jim Caldwell who was named the Lions' head coach after being the Ravens' offensive coordinator this season.
Last season, Spagnuolo was a senior defensive assistant with the Ravens and he helped defensive coordinator Dean Pees study opponents and provided ideas for game plans.
Prior to being with the Ravens, Spagnuolo has been a defensive coordinator and a head coach. From 2007-2008, he was the defensive coordinator of the New York Giants. He turned this gig into a head coaching job with the St. Louis Rams which lasted from 2009-2011. After this he was the defensive coordinator for the New Orleans Saints for the 2012 season. He then joined the Ravens staff after being fired by the Saints.
With the Giants, he engineered the defense that gave the record-breaking offense of the 18-0 New England Patriots fits in Super Bowl XLII. His defense is the main reason that the Giants won that game.
After this though, he found less success going 1-15, 7-9 and 2-14 in his three seasons in St. Louis for a combined record of 10-38. With the Saints his defense allowed the most yards in a single season in NFL history. Naturally, this led to his firing.
In his time as a coach, he has spent time coaching all positions on the defense. His experience with defensive backs comes at the University of Connecticut (1987-1991––with 1990 and 1991 being spent as defensive coordinator as well), University of Maine (1993), Rutgers University (1994-1995), Bowling Green University (1996-1997) and with the Philadelphia Eagles (2001-2003).
The Ravens' secondary features good, young talent with Lardarius Webb and Jimmy Smith at the starting cornerback positions. Last year's first round pick, Matt Elam, started at free safety this season and is expected to transition to strong safety this season––his more natural position. The team is expected to be looking for a true free safety this offseason, whether it be via free agency or the draft.
Ever since Austin left the Ravens, Spagnuolo was the favorite for the job. It is likely that the team made it their priority to hire an offensive coordinator before a secondary coach. Since Gary Kubiak was hired as offensive coordinator two days ago, it was time to move to other vacancies in the staff.