UPDATED: Riders move Dyce to Special Teams; Hire Line Coaches
The Roughriders filled a few holes in their coaching staff on Wednesday.
Doug Malone has been hired as the teams offensive line coach, while Todd Howard has been named defensive line coach. The move that certainly caught most of the attention was last years offensive coordinator, Bob Dyce, sliding over to special teams coordinator.
"Once George (Cortez) came on board we pretty much decided how to shape the staff," said head coach Corey Chamblin. "I though (Dyce) was the best fit internally, then we looked throughout the league."
Dyce of course was bumped from the offensive coordinator spot after the team hired George Cortez to do that job. Chamblin feels that Dyce is a good fit because he does have a little experience working special teams in Winnipeg, and because he has the respect of the players.
"Obviously, I'm okay with it," said Dyce. "Life is always throwing you a curve ball every once in a while."
Dyce even compared his situation to a player he will be working quite closely with now, full back/receiver Scott McHenry, who has played a few different positions to help out the team.
While there will certainly be a number of things Dyce is going to have to learn along the way, he's having difficulty with one thing right now.
"All the other coaches are in meetings, and I'm meeting with myself," joked Dyce. "There's no one to talk to."
After that, he says it's going back and re-learning the language of special teams, after speaking offense for so long.
Dyce is also looking forward to working with more of a variety of players.
"Really one thing I found, especially since I've been here, I've had a lot less interaction with defensive players," he said. "Now I have the opportunity to work with all those guys."
Dyce won't be going at it alone this year, Chamblin also announced that the team is looking to hire an assistant coach that will work with special teams and the defense. It was something they were apparently going to do before Craig Dickenson left for Winnipeg.
One coach that assistant will get to help is new defensive line coach Todd Howard, who had the same job with the University of California-Berkley, previously working with the Jacksonville Jaguars and St. Louis Rams, having won a Super Bowl with the Rams in 2000.
"No none sense type guy, very big, tall, all that good stuff," said Chamblin.
Howard is someone who was on the short list when the Riders originally hired Mike Sinclair, admitting he's had interest in Howard since he became a head coach. Chamblin told reporters that just about everyone he talked to about the job, be it in interviews or as advice, kept bringing Howard's name up.
"They lost a job to Todd Howard, they lost a job to Todd Howard, I was like I probably don't need to be talking to you guys, I need to be talking to Todd Howard."
Howard is also a guy who is all about making sure his defensive linemen get to the quarterback, something that is of course music to the ears of Chamblin, who has been preaching that since day one on the job last year.
On the other side of the ball, Malone wants to make sure that Darian Durant, or whoever else may have to play quarterback stays on his feet.
"Real excited to be here, and to be with George (Cortez), I felt we did some good things last year," said Malone.
Malone of course worked with Cortez last season when they were both with the Hamilton Tiger-Cats.
Last seasons offensive line coach, Kris Sweet, was often described as "intense." Malone sees himself a little differently.
"I'm not a yeller and a screamer," said Malone. "But yet, we're going to be a physical offensive line, and we're going to be nasty, and get after it and play hard."
However, like Sweet, Malone would prefer to stay out of the spotlight.
Malone does think there's a good group of linemen here, and he's just looking to build off what Sweet started.
"You can see them improve throughout the year, and get better," he said. "Hopefully we can do the same thing."
One thing Malone will have to work with here, as compared to Hamilton is an elite running back. Not that Ti-Cats running game was awful, but Kory Sheets certainly brings something that few in the CFL can.
"The good thing about Kory, just watching tape since I've been here really start studying them, is he can make a guy miss, that helps a whole when you can make a guy or two miss, that maybe you should have accounted for."
With files from CJME's Joel Gasson and Jamie Nye