On Thursday, the Tampa Bay Buccaneers announced a large chunk of the coaching staff that will serve under Lovie Smith. But one the few positions left in need of a coach was the cornerback position, and Friday was as long as we’d need to wait to find out who would coach in that role.
#Bucs announced today that they have named Gill Byrd as cornerbacks coach.
— Rick Stroud (@NFLSTROUD) January 10, 2014
Gill Byrd is a long-time assistant to Lovie Smith, and is also father of current NFL player Jairus Byrd. He’s also a former player in his own right, and was a two-time Pro Bowler with the San Diego Chargers.
Byrd began his coaching career as an assistant on Lovie Smith’s defensive staff in 2003 in St. Louis, and Byrd followed Smith to Chicago the next year and worked his way up to defensive backs coach by the end of his time with the Bears.
During his time with Smith, Byrd has coached plenty of elite talents at corner. The most impressive player he’s coached is corner Aeneas Williams, who met Byrd when the two played in the NFL together, and led to a very special bond between Williams and the Byrd family (you can read more about that here).
So not only is Byrd a capable coach, but he’s a man that is respected and looked up to by his peers. His words alone shaped the career of Aeneas Williams, so imagine what his coaching may do for a young corner like Johnthan Banks.