Former Pittsburgh Steelers cornerback William Gay has been accepted into the NFL’s Bill Walsh Diversity Coaching Fellowship and will be working with the Dallas Cowboys this summer.
Gay, 38, had previously coached defensive backs for FCS Missouri State in 2020 before stepping away from coaching to raise his son. He also served as the Steelers’ coaching intern in 2019.
“I didn’t get drafted this past weekend but his email definitely got me feeling like it’s 2007,” Gay wrote on Instagram.
Gay was the Steelers’ fifth-round draft pick in the 2007 NFL Draft and rose to become a starter in two stints with the Steelers. He played in 80 games and made 37 starts for the Steelers from 2007-11. After signing with the Arizona Cardinals as a free agent in 2012, he returned to the Steelers in 2013, playing another 80 games and making 49 more starts.
He retired after being released by the New York Giants at the end of training camp in 2018, and quickly got into coaching.
The Bill Walsh Minority Coaching Fellowship was first started to help increase the diversity amongst an NFL staff and the coaching ranks. It recommends that NFL teams keeping the coach through the entirety of training camp, including through the duration of the preseason games.
Participants apply for the fellowship and list the five teams that would like to take their fellowship with. Front offices are then notified, and they can be hired. The fellowship encourages hiring multiple coaches in the fellowship. Some teams, such as the Packers, have hired as many as 12 coaches in the fellowship this offseason alone. The Steelers hired five in 2022.
With Stephon Gilmore and Trevon Diggs, Gay will get to work with one of the top cornerback groups in the NFL with the Cowboys.