Todd Bowles
Tampa Bay Buccaneers
Position:Defensive coordinator
Personal information
Born: (1963-11-18) November 18, 1963 (age 57)
Elizabeth, New Jersey
Height:6 ft 2 in (1.88 m)
Weight:233 lb (106 kg)
Career information
High school:Elizabeth (NJ)
Career history
As a player:
As a coach:
Career highlights and awards
As player
As coach
Career NFL statistics
Games played:117
Games started:20
Head coaching record
Regular season:26–41 (.388)
Player stats at
Coaching stats at PFR

Todd Robert Bowles (born November 18, 1963) is an American football coach who is the defensive coordinator of the Tampa Bay Buccaneers of the National Football League (NFL), as well as a former player. He played eight seasons in the NFL as a safety, mainly for the Washington Redskins, and started in Super Bowl XXII against the Denver Broncos. Bowles was the interim defensive coordinator for the Philadelphia Eagles in 2012, and then for the Arizona Cardinals in 2013 and 2014. He was the interim head coach for the Miami Dolphins for the final three games of the 2011 season with a 2–1 record after the firing of Tony Sparano, and served as the head coach of the New York Jets from 2015–2018.

Early years

Bowles attended Elizabeth High School in Elizabeth, New Jersey.[1] He played college football at Temple University (Class of 1985), where he was a four-year starting defensive back for Bruce Arians, for whom Bowles would be an assistant coach decades later when Arians was head coach of the Arizona Cardinals and then the Tampa Bay Buccaneers in the NFL.[2]

Playing career

Bowles was signed by the Washington Redskins as an undrafted free agent on May 7, 1986.[3] He chose the Redskins over six other NFL teams, and signed a contract that included a signing bonus between $8,000 and $10,000. Bowles competed in training camp with free safety Raphel Cherry, and beat him out to earn a spot on the regular season roster.[4] In his second training camp in 1987, Bowles beat out Curtis Jordan for the starting free safety job when Jordan was released during final roster cuts on September 8, 1987.[5] He was the starting free safety in Super Bowl XXII, which Washington won in a blowout.

On February 1, 1989, after his contract expired, Bowles was left unprotected by the Redskins during "Plan B" free agency, despite being a regular starter at free safety the previous two seasons.[6] This was reportedly due to his poor catching abilities in 1988, as well as his lack of playmaking ability. He negotiated contracts with the Dallas Cowboys, Minnesota Vikings, and New York Giants,[7] but ultimately re-signed with the Redskins.[8] In 1990, Bowles received a salary of $300,000,[9] and started 18 games (including playoffs).[10]

The San Francisco 49ers signed Bowles to start for the team in 1991 after he was left unprotected by the Redskins again.[11] He played in all 16 games and started in 14 of them. He was waived during final roster cuts on September 1, 1992.[12] He was claimed off waivers by the Redskins on September 2, 1992.[13] He was waived by the Redskins during final roster cuts on August 31, 1993.[14]

Coaching career

After retiring as a player, Bowles was a member of the Green Bay Packers' player personnel staff from 1995–1996. He was the defensive coordinator and secondary coach at Morehouse College in 1997, and the defensive coordinator and defensive backs coach at Grambling State from 1998–1999. He was the defensive backs coach for the New York Jets in 2000, Cleveland Browns in 2004, and Dallas Cowboys from 2005–2007. He was the Browns' defensive nickel package coach from 2001–2003.

Miami Dolphins

Bowles was hired by the Miami Dolphins as the team's secondary coach and assistant head coach on January 23, 2008. After nearly four seasons as the secondary coach and assistant head coach, he was named the interim head coach on December 12, 2011, following the firing of head coach Tony Sparano. Bowles' first game as interim head coach of the Dolphins came on December 18, on the road against the Buffalo Bills. The Dolphins won the game 30–23. The Dolphins finished 2–1 under Bowles in 2011.

Philadelphia Eagles

The Philadelphia Eagles hired Bowles as the team's secondary coach on January 30, 2012. The Eagles announced on October 16, 2012, that they dismissed defensive coordinator Juan Castillo from his duties and named Todd Bowles as their new defensive coordinator. Under Bowles, the Eagles finished the season ninth in pass defense and twenty-third in rushing defense.[15]

Arizona Cardinals

On January 18, 2013, Bowles was hired as defensive coordinator for the Arizona Cardinals. On January 31, 2015, he was voted Associated Press (AP)'s Assistant Coach of the Year for his efforts in the 2014 season.[16] Bowles received 22 of the 50 media members' votes, winning the inaugural award.[17]

New York Jets

Days after the release of Rex Ryan, the New York Jets named Bowles their new head coach and signed him to a 4-year deal on January 14, 2015.[18]

On July 28, 2015, it was revealed that Bowles underwent a partial knee replacement surgery.[19] In the 2015 season, the Jets won 10 games in Bowles's first year leading the team, and the team would barely miss the playoffs. The 2016 season saw the Jets finish near the bottom of the league in most offensive categories, but 11th in rushing yards.[20]

On December 29, 2017, it was announced by the Jets organization that Bowles had been retained for the 2018 season, and signed an extension to continue as coach through 2020.[21] But on December 30, 2018, the Jets fired Bowles after finishing 4–12.[22]

Tampa Bay Buccaneers

On January 8, 2019, Bowles was hired as the defensive coordinator of the Tampa Bay Buccaneers, rejoining Bruce Arians as a member of his staff after Arians was hired as the team's head coach.[23]

Bowles's defense received praise for its performance in the 2020–21 playoffs as it was key in the Buccaneers defeating the New Orleans Saints in the divisional round and the Green Bay Packers in the NFC Championship game.[24] Bowles won his second Super Bowl (his first as a coach) as the Buccaneers defeated the Kansas City Chiefs 31–9 in Super Bowl LV. Bowles was credited with a game plan that pressured Chiefs quarterback Patrick Mahomes without resorting to blitzing, by utilizing the two-deep safety look and pass-rushing which prevented the Chiefs' prolific offense from scoring a touchdown and which intercepted Mahomes twice.[25][26][27][28][29]

Head coaching record

Team Year Regular season Postseason
Won Lost Ties Win % Finish Won Lost Win % Result
MIA* 2011 2 1 0 .667 3rd in AFC East
MIA total 2 1 0 .667
NYJ 2015 10 6 0 .625 2nd in AFC East
NYJ 2016 5 11 0 .313 4th in AFC East
NYJ 2017 5 11 0 .313 4th in AFC East
NYJ 2018 4 12 0 .250 4th in AFC East
NYJ total 24 40 0 .375
Total[30] 26 41 0 .388 0 0 .000

* – Interim head coach


  1. ^ Todd Bowles Archived September 29, 2007, at the Wayback Machine, Database Football. Accessed September 19, 2007.
  2. ^ "Hall of Fame - Todd Bowles". Owl Sports (Temple University).
  3. ^ "Transactions". The New York Times. May 7, 1986. Retrieved August 7, 2017.
  4. ^ Brennan, Christine (September 4, 1986). "Undrafted but Not Unwanted, 5 Rookie Free Agents Are Redskins". The Washington Post. Retrieved August 7, 2017.
  5. ^ Brennan, Christine (September 8, 1987). "Redskins release former starters Jordan, Coffey". The Washington Post. Retrieved August 7, 2017.
  6. ^ Friend, Tom and Michael Wilbon (February 1, 1989). "10 Redskins regulars are free agents". The Washington Post. Retrieved August 7, 2017.
  7. ^ Friend, Tom (March 16, 1989). "Redskins sign ex-Bengals free safety Dillahunt". The Washington Post. Retrieved August 7, 2017.
  8. ^ Justice, Richard (January 31, 1991). "Redskins risk some old hands". The Washington Post. Retrieved August 7, 2017.
  9. ^ Freeman, Mike (December 11, 1990). "Redskins among best-paid". The Washington Post. Retrieved August 7, 2017.
  10. ^ Justice, Richard (March 29, 1991). "Millen back on fence, but Manusky goes". The Washington Post. Retrieved August 7, 2017.
  11. ^ Justice, Richard (April 5, 1991). "Retooled Redskins leave Bryant out of game plan". The Washington Post. Retrieved August 7, 2017.
  12. ^ "Now They Cut Them, Now They Don't". The Los Angeles Times. September 1, 1992. Retrieved August 7, 2017.
  13. ^ "Transactions". The New York Times. September 2, 1992. Retrieved August 7, 2017.
  14. ^ "Transactions". The New York Times. August 31, 1993. Retrieved August 7, 2017.
  15. ^ [1][dead link]
  16. ^ Lange, Randy (February 1, 2015). "Todd Bowles, Ron Wolf Receive 'NFL Honors'". New York Jets. Archived from the original on February 2, 2015. Retrieved February 2, 2015.
  17. ^ Sessler, Marc (January 31, 2015). "Todd Bowles wins Assistant Coach of the Year award". National Football League. Retrieved February 2, 2015.
  18. ^ Lange, Randy (January 14, 2015). "Jets Name Todd Bowles Head Coach". New York Jets. Archived from the original on January 19, 2015. Retrieved January 14, 2015.
  19. ^ Slater, Darryl (July 28, 2015). "Jets coach Todd Bowles recently had partial knee replacement surgery". New Jersey News. Retrieved July 28, 2015.
  20. ^ "NFL Team Rushing Yards Per Game". Retrieved February 16, 2019.
  21. ^ Popper, Daniel (December 29, 2017). "Jets extend contracts of coach Todd Bowles, GM Mike Maccagnan two years". Daily News. New York. Retrieved March 3, 2021.
  22. ^ Cimini, Rich (December 30, 2018). "Jets fire coach Todd Bowles after third straight losing season". Retrieved December 30, 2018.
  23. ^ Smith, Michael David (January 8, 2019). "Bruce Arians getting the band back together, Bowles to be Bucs' defensive coordinator". NBC Sports. Retrieved January 8, 2019.
  24. ^ Greenawalt, Tyler (February 9, 2021). "Todd Bowles' creativity played a huge part in Bucs' big win". USA Today. Retrieved March 3, 2021.
  25. ^ Sherman, Rodger (February 8, 2021). "The Winners and Losers of Super Bowl LV". The Ringer. Retrieved March 3, 2021.
  26. ^ Clark, Kevin (February 8, 2021). "Super Bowl LV Was About QB Mythmaking, Just Not in the Way We Thought". The Ringer. Retrieved March 3, 2021.
  27. ^ Orr, Conor (February 8, 2021). "How Todd Bowles's Defense Controlled the Super Bowl From Start to Finish". Sports Illustrated. Retrieved March 3, 2021.
  28. ^ Cannizzaro, Mark (February 8, 2021). "Super Bowl exposed major flaw in head coach hiring process". New York Post. Retrieved March 3, 2021.
  29. ^ Heifetz, Danny (February 8, 2021). "The Worst Game of Patrick Mahomes's Life and the End of the Chiefs' Inevitability". The Ringer. Retrieved March 3, 2021.
  30. ^ "Todd Bowles". Pro Football Reference. Retrieved January 14, 2015.