The Green Bay Packers announced on Wednesday that Jeff Hafley, the head coach of Boston College, would take over as their new defensive coordinator.
Packers coach Matt LaFleur released a statement saying, “We are excited to welcome Jeff, his wife, Gina, and their daughters, Hope and Leah, to the Packers and the Green Bay community.” “Jeff has had success at every stop of his coaching career with an impressive track record of developing players at every level. We look forward to him leading our defense.”
In three of his four years at Boston College, Hafley led the Eagles to bowl eligibility with a 22–26 record. This season, Boston College went 7-6 with a victory over SMU, ranked 22nd, in the Fenway Bowl.
Hafley has previously turned down offers to coach in the NFL. However, he accepted this coordinator position because he wanted to work for one of the top-ranked NFL teams and because of the overall state of college football.
According to report, “he wants to go coach football again in a league that is all about football.” “Coaching in college is now about transfers, NIL, fundraising, and building your own team. There’s no time left for football coaching.
This year, Hafley is the third active college head coach to resign on his own volition in order to take a position as coordinator. He follows Maurice Linguist of Buffalo and Kane Wommack of South Alabama. Both of them accepted coordinator positions at Alabama, and their actions highlight the resource gap that results from elite universities pulling away from one another. The importance of name, image, and likeness deals in recruiting and roster retention has increased in the modern day.
Hafley was greatly attracted to the Packers’ bright future and strong young core. He’s been a lifelong supporter of the Packers and friend of LaFleur.
As LaFleur starts his sixth season as the team’s head coach, he will take Joe Barry’s place as the third different defensive coordinator.
Although LaFleur and Hafley have never collaborated directly, they do share some relationships. Under former head coach Mike Pettine, who served as LaFleur’s first defensive coordinator in Green Bay (2019–20), Hafley coached the Browns’ defensive backs in 2014–15. Hafley was employed by LaFleur’s mentor, 49ers coach Kyle Shanahan. Before taking a job as Ohio State’s co-defensive coordinator, Hafley coached the 49ers’ defensive backs from 2016 to 2018.
None of the other defensive coaches for the Packers were let go when Barry left the team; all of them have contracts through 2024. Thus, there’s an excellent chance that several, if not all of them, may take positions under Hafley again.
Hafley is a seasoned NFL assistant coach who returned to college football in 2019 to serve as Ohio State’s defensive coordinator after seven years of experience coaching multiple secondary positions in the NFL.
After the 2019 season, Hafley was appointed head coach of Boston College, filling in for the 2020 season that was disrupted by COVID-19. In the four years he had a losing record, 3-9 in 2022, that was it.
The last time Boston College had nine wins in a season was in 2008, under Jeff Jagodzinski. The previous three coaches have not been able to win nine games.
Three of the best recruiting classes in Boston College history were assembled during Hafley’s time there. In 2022, Hafley guided BC past No. 16 NC State, its first victory against a team rated by the Associated Press since 2014. This season, BC won its first bowl game since 2016.
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