ESPN‘s Adam Schefter is reporting that recently hired Florida Gators defensive coordinator George Edwards, last season an inside linebackers coach with the Miami Dolphins, has been hired away from Gainesville, FL, by the NFL‘s Buffalo Bills to serve as defensive coordinator.
Edwards, who was officially hired by the University of Florida on Jan. 8, is an 18-year coaching veteran who started his career with the Gators as an assistant under Steve Spurrier in 1991. Three stops later, he moved to the NFL to coach the defensive line for the Dallas Cowboys (1998-2001) but was snatched up by the Washington Redskins and then-head coach Spurrier as a linebackers coach and eventual defensive coordinator. Upon Spurrier’s dismissal, Edwards worked for the Cleveland Browns and then most recently the Dolphins from 2005-09.
The Bills hired Chan Gailey as head coach on Jan. 16. Gailey was head coach of the Cowboys in 1998-99 and had Edwards on his staff as defensive line coach. Joe Schad reports that Edwards was offered the position on National Signing Day.
“We are very excited that George Edwards has joined our staff as defensive coordinator,” Gailey said in a statement. “He brings a wealth of experience, not only as a motivator and communicator, but he has been involved with some great schemes and we are excited about him being the head of our defense.”
“I feel like this is a great opportunity for me to come in and have a chance to work with coach Gailey again and the staff that he has been able to put together,” Edwards added. “I am excited to have the opportunity to come to Buffalo and look forward to getting started as quickly as possible. This is a team that has played good defense in the past and I am excited to continue on with that tradition.”
Florida head coach Urban Meyer raved about Edwards upon his hiring. “George is a tremendous teacher of the game of football,” he said. “He is a great addition to our staff and will be a great coach and mentor to our players.” He also said Edwards “came strongly recommended by many, many people and kind of blew us away.”
Edwards seemed equally as pleased to coach the Gators. “I’m thrilled to be joining the UF coaching staff. I enjoy teaching and molding young men. I am looking forward to working with a great group of people at Florida and a great group of players.”
He was expected to institute a pro-style 3-4 defense but left after less than a month on the job and just a day after the Gators signed the nation’s top recruiting class.
OGGOA, on pure conjecture, expects co-defensive coordinator and secondary coach Chuck Heater to be promoted to defensive coordinator.