Saints name Woods, Grantham among 5 new assistants
METAIRIE, La. (AP) The New Orleans Saints hired Joe Woods as defensive coordinator and Todd Grantham as defensive line coach Wednesday.
Saints coach Dennis Allen also added secondary coach Marcus Robertson, tight ends coach Clancy Barone and assistant offensive line coach Kevin Carberry.
Woods spent the past three seasons as the Cleveland Browns' defensive coordinator and has spent the past 19 years of his career coaching in the NFL, including five as a coordinator.
In New Orleans, he joins a unit already overseen and called during games by Allen, who is entering his second season as Saints head coach after serving six-plus seasons as defensive coordinator under his predecessor, Sean Payton.
When Woods was the Oakland Raiders' secondary coach a decade ago, he worked under Allen, the club's head coach at that time. Woods also spent two seasons as defensive coordinator in Denver during the 2017 and 2018 seasons.
Grantham has spent much of his 33-year coaching career with major college programs, including at Alabama as an analyst last season, but also has spent 11 seasons in the NFL.
During most of the past dozen years, Grantham was a coordinator in the Southeastern Conference with Georgia, Mississippi State and Florida.
Before that, he worked with several NFL teams, including a stint as Cleveland's defensive coordinator from 2005 to 2007. He also was a defensive line coach with Indianapolis, Houston and Dallas.
The hiring of Woods and Grantham follow the departures of co-defensive coordinators Ryan Nielsen and Kris Richard. Nielsen, who oversaw the defensive line in New Orleans, was hired as defensive coordinator in Atlanta.
Richard, who also oversaw the secondary, was fired by New Orleans following a season in which the Saints ranked second in yards allowed passing in the NFL at 184.4 per game - despite top cornerback Marshon Lattimore missing 10 games with an abdominal injury.
Robertson, a former NFL safety, has spent the past four seasons coaching defensive backs with the Arizona Cardinals. Before that, he spent 11 seasons in similar roles with Tennessee, Detroit, Oakland and Denver, overlapping with Allen on the Raiders' staff for part of the 2014 season. He also coached under Woods in Denver.
Barone has coached with five NFL teams during the past 17 years, most recently Chicago, where he was tight ends coach in 2020 and 2021. He also worked with the Falcons, Chargers, Broncos and Vikings, coaching Pro Bowl tight ends on each of those clubs - Alge Crumpler, Antonio Gates, Julius Thomas and Kyle Rudolph.
Barone also spent 17 years as a college assistant, including at Wyoming, Houston and Texas State.
Carberry was the Los Angeles Rams' offensive line coach the past two seasons. He previously has coached in the NFL with Washington and Dallas and at the college level with Kansas and Stephen F. Austin.
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Updated February 15, 2023