Jacksonville Jaguars head coach Tom Coughlin today named Dom
Capers the team's defensive coordinator. Capers, 48, replaces Dick
Jauron, who became head coach of the Chicago Bears on Sunday.
Capers joins the Jaguars coaching staff after four seasons as head
coach of the Carolina Panthers.
"Dom Capers is an excellent football coach," Coughlin said. "He
has ascended through the coaching ranks, proving his quality at each
level: Outstanding teacher as a position coach, a superb strategist as
a coordinator, and excellent focus and leadership as a head coach.
Dom is a man of detail, very specific and very demanding in what
he wants. He's a great fit for the Jaguars organization."
"I'm thrilled to join Tom's staff and to have the opportunity to help
upgrade the Jaguars defense," Capers said. "The Jaguars have
shown constant improvement each season, and I look forward to
this new challenge with great anticipation."
In January 1995, Capers was named the first coach of the
expansion Carolina Panthers. In the team's first season, the
Panthers opened with five straight losses, but rebounded to post
seven wins in the last 11 games. In the Panthers' second season,
Carolina won its last seven games to claim the NFC West division
title. In the playoffs, they defeated the Dallas Cowboys before
losing to the eventual Super Bowl winner Green Bay in the NFC
Championship game. The Panthers finished second in points
allowed, seventh in scoring, first in sacks, fourth in takeaways and
tenth in overall defense, and went 9-0 at home as Capers was
selected coach of the year.
In the Panthers third season, the team remained in the hunt for the
playoffs until the final two weeks of the season before finishing 7-9.
In 1998, the Panthers finished 4-12, with nine of the 12 losses by
seven points or less and seven by five points or fewer. Capers was
released at the end of the season.
Before being hired by the Panthers, Capers was the defensive
coordinator for the Pittsburgh Steelers under Bill Cowher from
1992-94. In 1994, his defense was second in the NFL and first in
the AFC while leading in quarterback sacks and finishing second in
opponents average gain per play, first downs allowed and points
allowed. He began his professional coaching career in 1984 as an
assistant coach under Jim Mora with the Philadelphia/Baltimore
Stars of the USFL, winning titles in 1984 and 1985. In 1985 he
joined Mora as defensive backs coach for the New Orleans Saints.
In his six years with the Saints, the defense ranked among the
NFL's top five in interceptions three times. In 1991, the Saints
ranked second in total defense, rushing defense and pass defense.
They also led the NFL with 29 interceptions and ranked third with
Capers' first coaching assignment came as a graduate assistant at
Kent State (1972-74), where he earned a master's degree in
administration before taking a graduate assistant position at
Washington with Huskies assistant Jim Mora in 1975. He joined the
full-time coaching ranks that year and had a series of stops at
Hawaii (1975-76), San Jose State (1977), California (1978-79),
Tennessee (1980-81) and Ohio State (1982-83).
A native of Cambridge, Ohio, Capers attended Meadowbrook High
School in Buffalo, Ohio, where he was a star athlete before
concentrating on football at Mount Union College. In college he
played safety and linebacker before graduating in 1972.
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