The Minnesota Vikings are reportedly hiring former Pittsburgh Steelers defensive back Deshea Townsend as their new secondary coach, according to a report by Pro Football Network’s Aaron Wilson.
Townsend has spent the last three season with the Chicago Bears in the same capacity. He held previous stints in a similar role with the New York Giants, Tennessee Titans, Arizona Cardinals and Mississippi State University.
Among the NFL players that he’s mentored are Kevin Byard, Landon Collins, Kyle Fuller, Janoris Jenkins and Patrick Peterson.
Townsend played 12 seasons in Pittsburgh after being selected in the fourth round of the 1998 NFL Draft out of Alabama. He recorded 449 total tackles, 21 interceptions, 15.5 sacks, five forced fumbles and three defensive touchdowns over his career. He started his career a sub-package corner, but despite his 5-foot-10 stature, worked his way into a starting role.
He started 80 games in his NFL career, all with the Steelers, including Super Bowl XL after the 2005 season, when he had a sack and six tackles. Townsend also had an interception in the Steelers’ AFC Championship win over Baltimore in the 2008 AFC Championship Game, on the way to a Super Bowl XLIII win.