Detroit Lions add Dave Fipp as special teams coordinator


The Detroit Lions will have hired their fourth specialty team coordinator in four years, adding veteran coach Dave Fipp to Dan Campbell’s staff.

Fipp has worked as the coordinator for special teams in Philadelphia since 2013.

During his tenure in Philadelphia, the Eagles finished second in touchdowns and blocked kicks of the two special teams. The team scored four kickoff returns, four punt returns and four blocked punts and blocked a total of 18 kicks.

In the ranking of the special teams, which the experienced NFL reporter Rick Gosselin compiles every year, the Eagles never finished below 19th place and topped the charts in both 2014 and 2016.

Fipp inherits a special team group in Detroit that has had an outstanding year but is also in flux. Long-time kicker Matt Prater and dynamic returnees Jamal Agnew will both be unrestricted free agents in March.

On the upside, punter Jack Fox, who set franchise records for gross and net averages in 2020, will be back in 2021.

The Lions have achieved high trainer sales in special teams in recent years. Former trainer Matt Patricia fired coordinator Joe Marciano in mid-2018 before bringing John Bonamego back for a second stint with the franchise ahead of the 2019 season.

Bonamego only lasted a year before being replaced by first year coordinator Brayden Coombs. He had the group perform near the top of the league before being sacked late in the season for calling a wrong punt without clearing it with interim manager Darrell Bevell.

Prior to Philadelphia, Fipp spent two seasons as a special team coordinator in Miami and three years as a special team assistant in San Francisco. He also has several years of college coaching experience, including three years as the San Jose State Defensive Coordinator.

Fipp’s time in Miami overlapped with Campbell, who was the team’s coach for those two seasons. According to Gosselin’s rankings, the dolphins took second and fourth place this season.