Billy Davis (American football coach)

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Billy Davis
Ohio State Buckeyes
Position: Linebackers coach
Personal information
Born: (1965-11-05) November 5, 1965 (age 52)
Youngstown, Ohio
Career information
College: Cincinnati
Career history
As coach:
Career highlights and awards

Pro Football Hall of Fame inductees coached:

Pro Bowlers coached:

Coaching stats at PFR

Bill Davis (born November 5, 1965) is an American football coach at Ohio State University.[1] Bill Davis, a veteran assistant coach in the National Football League who has seven years of experience as a defensive coordinator in the NFL, is in his first season as linebackers coach at Ohio State University.[2]

A 24-year NFL assistant, Davis’s resume includes defensive coordinator positions with Arizona (2009-10) and San Francisco (2005-06) in addition to his three seasons with the Eagles. He has also coached linebackers for eight seasons in the National Football League (NFL), with Atlanta, the New York Giants, Arizona and Cleveland.[2]

In 2014, Davis’ Eagles tied for second in the NFL in sacks with 49, ranked fifth in rushing yards per attempt (3.7) and tied for sixth in takeways with 28, a total that included an NFL-best 23 forced fumbles. His 2014 Eagles’ defense ranked in a tie for third with 31 takeaways.[2]

Davis has worked for some of the NFL’s best defensive coaches, including Bill Cower, Dick LeBeau, Wade Phillips, Marvin Lewis and Dom Capers, and he also has worked on the staff of coaches such as Tom Coughlin, Mike McCarthy and Dan Reeves. He was a member of Ken Whisenhunt’s Arizona Cardinals staff in 2008 when the team advanced to Super Bowl XLIII and played Pittsburgh.[2]

NFL Pro Bowlers coached by Davis include Keith Brooking, Darnell Dockett, Kevin Greene, Walt Harris, Lamar Lathon, Dominique Rodgers-Cromartie, Antrel Rolle, Adrian Wilson and Connor Barwin.[2]

Early life[edit]

Davis was born on November 5, 1965 in Youngstown, Ohio.[3] His father, Bill Davis, coached in the NFL for 13 years, included the six years he was the Cleveland Browns’ vice president of player personnel.[3] As a kid, Davis was hired to be a ball boy for Dick Vermeil in Philadelphia and Don Shula in Miami.[3]

College years[edit]

Davis attended the University of Cincinnati and was a quarterback and wide receiver on the football team from 1985 to 1988. Davis met Urban Meyer during this time and was the best man in his wedding.[3][4]

Coaching career[edit]

Michigan State[edit]

Davis began his football coaching career as a graduate assistant for the Michigan State Spartans.[3]

Pittsburgh Steelers[edit]

In 1992, Davis entered the NFL as the defensive assistant for the Pittsburgh Steelers. For most of his football career, Davis had played and coached on the offensive side of the ball, but under head coach Bill Cowher, Davis coached the Pittsburgh defense for three years.[3]

Carolina Panthers[edit]

In 1995, under coach Dom Capers, Davis spent four years with the newly created Carolina Panthers. In his second year with Carolina, linebacker Kevin Greene finished first in the NFL in sacks with 14.5, and Lamar Lathon finished second in the NFL in sacks with 13.5. Both linebackers went to the Pro Bowl that year.[3]

Cleveland Browns[edit]

In 1999, Davis spent a year as a defensive assistant and linebackers coach with the Cleveland Browns.[3]

Green Bay Packers[edit]

In 2000, Davis went to the Green Bay Packers where he spent the year as a defensive assistant and line coach.[3]

Atlanta Falcons[edit]

Davis then went to the Atlanta Falcons in 2001, where he spent the next three seasons as the linebackers coach under Dan Reeves. Davis helped then defensive coordinator Wade Phillips implement his new 3-4 defense. During Davis' three years at Atlanta, linebacker Keith Brooking went to the Pro Bowl each year.[3]

New York Giants[edit]

Davis was the New York Giants linebackers coach in 2004. According to defensive coordinator Tim Lewis, Bill commanded the room whenever speaking to players and compiled blitz packages, a job usually done by the defensive coordinator.[5]

San Francisco 49ers[edit]

On February 6, 2005, Davis was hired by San Francisco 49ers head coach Mike Nolan to be the defensive coordinator on the team after a six-hour interview.[4] One of the reasons Davis got the job was because he had experience with the 3-4 defense that Nolan wanted to implement in San Francisco's defense and a recommendation Nolan got from New York Giants DC Tim Lewis.[5][4]

Arizona Cardinals[edit]

He was the Assistant Defense coach for the Arizona Cardinals when they went to the Super Bowl, eventually losing to the Steelers. He was Defensive coordinator in 2009 and 2010.[6]

Cleveland Browns[edit]

On January 31, 2011 it was announced that Davis was hired as the linebackers coach.[7]

Philadelphia Eagles[edit]

On February 7, 2013, it was announced that Davis was hired as the Defensive Coordinator of the Philadelphia Eagles.[8]

On January 19, 2016, Davis was not retained after new head coach Doug Pederson hired Jim Schwartz to replace him.[9]

Ohio State[edit]

In December 2016 it was announced that he will be hired to the Ohio State football defensive staff.[1]. In 2018, Davis's linebackers at Ohio State consistently guess what hole to attack before they even read the play, get blocked and are unable to shed the block resulting in huge plays. This has lead to widespread criticisms by Ohio State fans.

Personal life[edit]

Bill Davis lives with his wife, Sherry, and they are the parents of five children: Monica, Brooke, twins Grace and Ava and son Billy.[3]


  1. ^ a b "Veteran NFL Coach Bill Davis Joins Ohio State Staff". Retrieved 2 June 2017.
  2. ^ a b c d e " Bill Davis Bio :: The Ohio State University Official Athletic Site The Ohio State University Official Athletic Site :: Football". Retrieved 2017-03-03.
  3. ^ a b c d e f g h i j k Arizona Cardinals. Bill Davis Retrieved on 2008-03-25.
  4. ^ a b c USA Today. Niners hire Billy Davis as defensive coordinator Retrieved on 2008-03-26.
  5. ^ a b SFGate. 49ers hire Davis as defensive coordinator. Retrieved on 2008-03-26
  6. ^
  7. ^ "Cleveland Browns hire assistant coaches Mark Whipple (QBs), Bill Davis (LBs), Dwaine Board (defensive line) and Mike Wilson (receivers)". Retrieved 27 August 2016.
  8. ^ "Billy Davis set to run Philadelphia Eagles' defense". Retrieved 2 June 2017.
  9. ^ "Report: Jim Schwartz to be named Eagles DC". Retrieved 27 August 2016.
Sporting positions
Preceded by
Willy Robinson
San Francisco 49ers Defensive Coordinator
Succeeded by
Greg Manusky
Preceded by
Clancy Pendergast
Arizona Cardinals Defensive Coordinator
Succeeded by
Ray Horton
Preceded by
Todd Bowles
Philadelphia Eagles Defensive Coordinator
Succeeded by
Jim Schwartz