The Cincinnati Bengals hired defensive backs Vance Joseph on Tuesday, merging his role with Mark Carrier to create a duel-coaching position. One will coach cornerbacks, the other safeties.
"With the continued increased emphasis on the passing game in the NFL, it’s crucial for us to expand our coaching strength in this area," said head coach Marvin Lewis in a presser on Tuesday. "Vance has excellent experience and has coached a lot of good young players. We feel fortunate to have been able to sign him up for this important job."
Joseph is the type of coach that appears on a path that will take him from graduate assistant at Colorado in 2001 to defensive coordinator - though probably not in Cincinnati with the recent promotion of Paul Guenther. Joseph already has the experience of being a defensive play-caller.
When the Houston Texans fired Gary Kubiak and named Wade Phillips as the team's interim head coach, Wilson passed his defensive play-calling duties to Joseph.
"He's very detailed," Phillips said about Joseph. "The players will know what they're supposed to do. He always has input. All of them have input, certainly. He’s going to call the same things I’m going to call overall."
At the time that this happened, Battle Red Blog wrote:
Vance Joseph calling the defense is a logical move. On balance (though this year isn't exactly a ringing endorsement of anyone on the coaching staff), Joseph has done a good job with the secondary during his three years in Houston. His tutelage turned Kareem Jackson into a legitimate NFL cornerback, which is something no one thought possible in 2010. V-Jo even made Brice McCain look like the best nickel corner in the NFL in 2011, an accomplishment on par with cold fusion, given what we've seen from McCain every other season of his professional career. Vance Joseph should get the opportunity to call a defense; defensive coordinator is the next step for him, even though it seems rather unlikely it happens in Houston after this season ends.
He called his first game against the Indianapolis Colts in mid-December, received high-praise from cornerback Brandon Harris.
"He did a great job," Harris said via HoustonTexans.com. "I thought he had a great game plan on Sunday. I thought he mixed the calls in very, very well. Kept Andrew Luck and the Colts offense unbalanced and then was able to keep them to a lot of field goal drives when sometimes they probably should have scored. He did a great job of switching the calls up and putting us in the best position to make plays."
Interim head coach Wade Phillips agreed.
"He did a real good job," Phillips said about Joseph after the Colts game. "The first series, we weren't happy with. Three times, they had the ball in our territory and scored nine points without really moving the ball at it. Of course, the two points (safety) wasn't on the defense. We only gave up a field goal in the second half."
Harris would go on to praise Joseph for developing him as a player.
"He’s great," Harris said. "It’s amazing the progression that everybody goes through with him, along with myself. You just see improvements in your game and the confidence you play with from the time you get here and year-to-year. Each year you get better and better."
Joseph, along with the entire Texans coaching staff, would be let go after Bill O'Brien was hired as the team's head coach.