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Lions Hire former Steelers RB Duce Staley as Assistant Head Coach

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The Detroit Lions have hired former Pittsburgh Steelers running back Duce Staley as their assistant head coach and running backs coach, the team announced Friday.

Staley has previously spent his entire eleven-year coaching career with the Philadelphia Eagles. He was Philadelphia’s running backs coach since 2013, and added assistant head coach duties with the Eagles in 2018.

Staley was a candidate for the Eagles head coaching job earlier this month, but the organization hired former Indianapolis Colts offensive coordinator Nick Sirianni to replace the ousted Doug Pederson.

It was the fourth time Staley has been passed up for a promotion by the Eagles organization, and as a result, he asked to be released from his contract last week.

Selected in the third round of the 1997 NFL Draft by the Eagles, Staley played the first seven years of his career in Philadelphia, where is 4,807 rushing yards are the fifth-most in franchise history.

Staley then went cross-state, and joined the Steelers for the final three season of his career, winning Super Bowl XL in 2005. He rushed for 978 yards and two touchdowns with Pittsburgh.

Staley was not the only staff addition made by the Lions on Friday, as the team also announced the hirings of Mark Brunell as the team’s quarterbacks coach and Mark DeLeone as their new inside linebackers coach.

Brunell, who retired from a 19-year career in 2011, has never coached at the NFL level previously. Most notably finding success with the Jacksonville Jaguars in the late 1990s, Brunell passed for 32,072 career yards and 184 touchdowns, while also rushing for 2,421 yards and 15 scores.

Brunell is tasked with mentoring Detroit’s next quarterback, as veteran Matthew Stafford extremely likely to be moving on.

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