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Reich a Natural Choice as New Offensive Coordinator
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Because of that and more, Reich was promoted to Offensive Coordinator on Tuesday. The position became available after Ken Whisenhunt was hired as Head Coach of the Tennessee Titans on Monday.
“With Frank as offensive coordinator, we will be able to maintain continuity on offense and help maximize the production by Philip and the entire unit,” McCoy said. “He has a great feel for the offense we have created and he has been a valuable asset to Philip and all of the quarterbacks.”
Perhaps the truest testament to Reich’s contribution to the team was reflected in what Rivers had to say Monday before any announcement of Reich’s promotion was made.
“Frank has been great,” he said. “It is great having him. He is a heck of a coach. His steadiness from week to week, the way he helps prepare us and coaches is second to none. His playing career obviously helps and his preparation. His fourteen years of playing experience is valuable in itself, because there is a guy that stood in the pocket and can relate to you on a personal level, because he has done it. He is a heck of a teacher. It was great having him and it was a great first year start with him.”
It is easy to see why Rivers, like many in the Chargers’ organization, is high on Reich. In his 10th year, the Chargers quarterback had arguably the most successful season of his career. He led the league with a 69.5-completion percentage, throwing for 4,478 yards (third-highest of his career) and 32 touchdowns (second-highest of his career) to just 11 interceptions. Rivers tied the team record for a passer rating (105.5), while setting a team mark for single-season completions (378). As a result, Rivers was named to his fifth Pro Bowl.
Before his coaching career started, Reich had a noteworthy career as a quarterback himself. Entering the league as a third-round pick of the Buffalo Bills in 1985, Reich played a total of 14 seasons. His first 10 were spent backing up Jim Kelly for one of the most successful stints in Bills history. He then moved to Carolina for a season, then spent a year with the New York Jets before finishing his career and retiring after two seasons with the Detroit Lions.
Reich is perhaps best known for two incredible comebacks. His first came in college as a senior with Maryland when he rallied the Terrapins to a 42-40 win over the University of Miami after his team trailed 31-0 for what was then the biggest comeback in collegiate football. Then, in 1992, he started a Wild Card game against the Houston Oilers and orchestrated the largest comeback in NFL history. Down 35-3 in the third quarter, Reich marched the Bills all the way back for a 41-38 victory.
A native of Freeport, New York, Reich spent seven years away from the game of football after he retired before getting into coaching in 2006 when he began a coaching internship with the Indianapolis Colts. In 2008 he was promoted to an Offensive Assistant, and he remained in Indianapolis until he was hired as wide receivers coach for the Arizona Cardinals in 2012. Reich spent one season in the desert before becoming the Bolts quarterbacks coach in 2013.