Lions officially hire Joe Marciano for special teams

The Detroit Lions officially named their new special-teams coordinator Tuesday as they tabbed Joe Marciano to replace John Bonamego, who left to become the head coach at Central Michigan.

Marciano was a special-teams consultant for Minnesota last season after being let go by Houston after the 2013 season.

He spent 12 years in Houston running its special teams and also worked in New Orleans and Tampa Bay.

“Joe obviously has had a remarkable career,” Lions head coach Jim Caldwell said in a statement. “First of all, we were trying to find a guy that had a significant amount of experience. We have a fairly veteran team and we wanted to make certain that we had a guy in there who has been through it before and understands how to implement a new system. Not only that, he had results in the past.

"The role [special-teams coordinators] play is vast within the framework of a team because of the fact that they probably touch, motivate and talk to more players than anyone except for the head coach, so it requires a guy with a unique skill level to be able to do that. He has to be a fine communicator. He also has to have a real fine sense of talent and how to utilize that all within the framework of special teams.”

Marciano will take over a unit that could be looking at an upgrade in returner over Jeremy Ross and still does not have a kicker since Matt Prater is an unrestricted free agent. Punter Sam Martin will return for his third season in 2015.

For more on Marciano, here's the post we did on him earlier this month.