Tennessee Titans coach Ken Whisenhunt confirmed Wednesday that Dick LeBeau will run the Titans' defense next season.
The Titans officially hired LeBeau as an assistant head coach/defense two weeks ago. He had spent the previous 11 seasons as the Steelers’ defensive coordinator but resigned last month when Pittsburgh decided to go in another direction.
Former Steelers defensive backs coach Ray Horton will remain the Titans’ defensive coordinator but will answer to LeBeau.
Whisenhunt said he doesn’t foresee any problems with the new arrangement since LeBeau mentored Horton before the latter left the Steelers to become a defensive coordinator elsewhere.
“It was important to Dick that Ray was there and was involved in it,” Whisenhunt said at the NFL scouting combine of what went into hiring LeBeau. “Ultimately, Dick has the say over the defense and we’re going to work through all that this spring. He had a lot of opportunities and we feel very fortunate to be able to get him.”
The addition of LeBeau gives the Titans six coaches who have significant ties to the Steelers.
Whisenhunt, LeBeau, Horton, assistant head coach/tight ends Mike Mularkey and linebackers coach Lou Spanos all coached in Pittsburgh.
Assistant defensive line coach Nick Eason played defensive end for the Steelers from 2007-10.
“Part of the reason we were able to get coach LeBeau is that he’s comfortable with the guys on our staff. That chemistry is important,” Whisenhunt said. “We feel like having a coach like him makes us better. [Hiring LeBeau] was a process to go through but I felt like my relationship with Coach after all these years, we’ve had success together and we’re looking forward to doing the same thing going forward.”