The Buffalo Bills officially named Doug Marrone head coach Monday. Marrone, who spent the last four years coaching Syracuse University, was formally introduced at a noon news conference at Ralph Wilson Stadium in Orchard Park.
Marrone becomes the 16th head coach in Bills history and brings with him 21 years of coaching experience, including seven in the National Football League and 14 in the NCAA. Marrone was hired by the Bills after going 25-25 in four seasons at Syracuse.
The 48-year-old Marrone takes over from Chan Gailey, who was fired last week after three losing seasons. He becomes the team's fifth head coach since 2001.
A native of the Bronx, Marrone said he and his family are looking forward to moving to Buffalo.
"I had some opportunities to make a choice and I've chosen to be here. I can't tell you how excited I am to be the head football coach," Marrone said.
Marrone was the offensive coordinator with the New Orleans Saints from 2006 to 2008 before turning around a dismal program at Syracuse.
"I've gone though this. I was a player in this league myself. I was a coach in this league for seven years," Marrone said.
Marrone inherits a franchise that newly promoted team President Russ Brandon described as having a ``tarnished'' reputation. The Bills have failed to make the playoffs for 13 consecutive seasons, the longest drought in the NFL. The team has not had a winning record since 2004, when it finished 9-7.
Terms of the deal were not disclosed, but ESPN reports Marrone's contract is for four years.
In a news release, the Bills provided the following information about Marrone:
Marrone spent the previous for years as the head coach of his alma mater’s football program at Syracuse University from 2009-12 and led the program to a 21-17 record in the last three seasons. He guided the Orange to an 8-5 mark in 2010 and 2012 – with both campaigns culminating in a New Era Pinstripe Bowl Championship. Syracuse’s offense set several program records in 2012 for total yards (5,681), passing yards (3,619) and first downs (300).
Prior to his Syracuse tenure, Marrone spent seven years in the NFL. From 2006-08 he served as the offensive coordinator of the New Orleans Saints after a four-year span as the offensive line coach of the New York Jets (2002-05).
The Saints led the NFL in total offense and passing yards per game in 2006 (391.5 total yards/game and 281.4 passing yards/game) and 2008 (410.7 total yards/game and 311.1 passing yards/game).
In 2004, the Jets’ offensive line paved the way for the league’s third-best rushing offense (149.3 rushing yards/game) while tallying the second-most rushing first downs (135). Running Back Curtis Martin led the NFL with 1,697 rushing yards and posted nine 100-yard games.
Before arriving in New York, Marrone coached the tight ends and tackles at the University of Tennessee in 2001. He spent the 2000 season at the University of Georgia as the program’s offensive line coach after spending the previous five years at Georgia Tech. In 1995, Marrone was the director of football operations before coaching the tight ends in 1996 and offensive line from 1997-99.
In 1999, the Yellow Jackets led the nation in total offense (509.4 yards/game) and points per game (40.7). Marrone was part of a coaching staff that helped guide the school to a bowl game in three consecutive years (1997-99).
Marrone’s coaching career began in 1992 at Cortland (N.Y.) State as the school’s tight ends coach before stints as the offensive line coach at the U.S. Coast Guard Academy (1993) and Northeastern University in 1994.
Marrone, a Bronx, N.Y. native, was drafted in the sixth-round of the 1986 NFL draft by the Los Angeles Raiders and played two years in the NFL, first with the Miami Dolphins in 1987 and then with the Saints in 1989. He also had playing stints with Pittsburgh, Dallas and Minnesota before closing his career with the NFLE London Monarchs (1991-92).
A three-year letterman at Syracuse, Marrone returned to the university and graduated in 1991. He and his wife, Helen, have two daughters, Madeline and Anne, and a son, Mack.