MOBILE, Ala. – Two long-time Jaguars assistants are leaving the organization: one on the sideline, one in the training room.
Linebackers coach Mark Duffner, a veteran of eight seasons as a Jaguars assistant, is leaving for a similar position with the Miami Dolphins, while head athletic trainer Mike Ryan is leaving the NFL to pursue other interests.
Duffner started with the Jaguars in 2006, and worked under head coaches Jack Del Rio, Mel Tucker (interim), Mike Mularkey and Gus Bradley. He has 17 years of NFL experience and was head coach at the University of Maryland from 1992-96.
Duffner is reunited with Dolphins head coach Joe Philbin, after working on the Green Bay Packers staff together in the mid-2000s.
Jaguars defensive coordinator Bob Babich will coach linebackers during the South team practices this week. Jaguars head coach Gus Bradley is expected to address the media this afternoon following the South team’s practice at Fairhope High School.
In addition, Mike Ryan is leaving the NFL after 26 seasons to pursue other interests. He has been with the Jaguars organization since 1994.
“I’ve got two little ones at home and a very supportive wife, and the rigors of the NFL, though it’s a great job and I love it, I think it’s time to focus on the family and I’m real excited about that,” Ryan said Monday morning in the lobby of the Renaissance Riverview Hotel.
Ryan started his NFL career as a summer intern with the New York Giants. He was hired as an athletic training assistant at 25 years of age, and later became the youngest head athletic trainer in the league at 31.
“I remember in 10th grade going home and telling my mom that I wanted to work in the NFL as an athletic trainer,” Ryan said. “To live that childhood dream for 26 years, I’m just very excited about it and I’m very blessed with a great opportunity.”
For an original Jaguars employee, Ryan said the organization has been very supportive since he approached them last week.
“We have new coaches, new ownership, a new general manager, but the character of the team has really been impressive,” Ryan said. “I’d be remiss if I didn’t say how great Shad (Khan), Dave Caldwell and Gus Bradley have been – very, very supportive of this whole move.
“They’ve been wonderful about this issue and it shows what class and a family-oriented mindset that they have and I’m very appreciative of that.”
Ryan’s final day with the Jaguars is February 7.