Originally written on Ravens Football Machine  |  Last updated 11/19/14

GLENDALE, AZ - DECEMBER 27: Head coach Steve Spagnuolo of the St. Louis Rams shouts instructions during the game with the Arizona Cardinals on December 27, 2009 at University of Phoenix Stadium in Glendale, Arizona. The Cardinals won 31-10. (Photo by Stephen Dunn/Getty Images)
Defensive genius Steve Spagnuolo was kinda left hanging in NFL limbo this past offseason, somewhat as a leftover from the disaster in New Orleans in 2012. But it makes sense that his former colleague John Harbaugh has reached out to Spags. They worked very well together when both were members of the Philadelphia Eagles staff almost a decade ago.             Spagnuolo was fired in January by Saints coach Sean Payton following one season in New Orleans in which the Saints' defense allowed a single-season NFL record 7,042 yards. However, his record as a defensive coach before 2012, when the Saints were floundering in the wake of their bounty scandal, was far better. The Associated Press broke the story at noon on Kentucky Derby Day: "The Ravens hired the former St. Louis Rams head coach and defensive coordinator of the Saints and Giants on Friday as a senior defensive assistant. Spagnuolo will have an opportunity at redemption following an unsettled 2012 season in which he oversaw a historically bad defense with scandal-plagued New Orleans." I prefer to remember that Spagnuolo had top 10 defenses with the Giants in the 2007 and 2008 seasons. His 2007 defense led the NFL with 53 sacks and the 2008 unit was sixth in the league with 42. In the Giants' 2008 Super Bowl triumph over New England, their defense sacked Tom Brady five times and held the Patriots, who had led the NFL with an average of 36.8 points per game, to only 14 points. "Steve had a number of opportunities in the league right now, and we're excited he picked the Ravens,'' Harbaugh said. "He comes to a staff that we believe is very strong, and he makes us even better. His wealth of NFL coaching experience speaks for itself, and he'll help us across the board. "We think he can help with every position on the defense, and we'll take full advantage of his knowledge and excellent teaching abilities.'' Before joining the Giants, Spagnuolo was a defensive assistant in Philadelphia from 1999-2006. He coached several Pro Bowl players including Brian Dawkins and Lito Sheppard, and helped Philadelphia field a 10th-ranked defense in the 2004 season, when the Eagles made it to the Super Bowl before falling to New England. Sean Payton, who never actually coached with Spagnuolo, decided to change New Orleans' defensive scheme from the 4-3 front that Spagnuolo ran to a 3-4. Payton also was apologetic in letting Spagnuolo go after a most unusual season. "In fairness to him, I think it was a unique, not only difficult but somewhat unfair situation to Steve,'' Payton said during the NFL meetings in March. "He's hired, and then all of a sudden the guy he was going to work with - he doesn't have a chance to. He coaches the defense for a season and then here it is, we're making a change. And I told him that. ... I felt bad and I felt like there were a handful of these things that were messed up.'' If you're wondering how current Ravens defensive coordinator Dean Pees is taking this news, it is probably with a sense of relief. Dean is a team guy, and knows with all the young new faces coming into camp that need teaching on defense, his coaching staff will need all the help it can get. Personally, I think Spags' presence on the sidelines will make Dean Pees even better as a DC.  
GET THE YARDBARKER APP:
Ios_download En_app_rgb_wo_45
MORE FROM YARDBARKER

Report: Josh Hamilton facing one-year suspension

Report: Eagles, Jets will make trade for Marcus Mariota

Cam Newton not a person of interest in night club shooting

Should Texans consider moving on from Arian Foster?

Dice-K begins comeback bid, makes first start in Japan

LIKE WHAT YOU SEE?
GET THE DAILY NEWSLETTER:

Report: Teams think Suh to Dolphins is ‘done' deal

Adrian Peterson still has ‘concerns’ about Vikings

LSU S blasts Tigers fans for leaving game early

Nobody’s safe in the NFL and nothing is sacred

UMass to retire jersey in honor of John Calipari

Houston Texans are moving on from Andre Johnson

Marijuana and MLB's Joint Drug Agreement

Twelve unlikely players who could be NCAA Tourney heroes

WATCH: CP3 goes nuts after DeAndre Jordan doesn't shoot

WATCH: Ridiculous foul called on Penn State

WATCH: Westbrook throws down huge dunk in return

Cowboys hang out at Duke game, pose with funny poster

Report: Peyton Manning's contract incentives tied to Super Bowl

Bean responds to Murphy's homosexuality comments

Haynesworth to Suh: Skins ‘took my love away from the game’

Five teams that should consider signing JaVale McGee

MLB local streaming is unlikely for Opening Day

Ronaldo sends his hair stylist to check on his wax figure monthly

NFL News
Delivered to your inbox
You'll also receive Yardbarker's daily Top 10, featuring the best sports stories from around the web. Customize your newsletter to get articles on your favorite sports and teams. And the best part? It's free!

By clicking "Sign Me Up", you have read and agreed to the Fox Sports Digital Privacy Policy and Terms of Use. You can opt out at any time. For more information, please see our Privacy Policy.
the YARDBARKER app
Get it now!
Ios_download En_app_rgb_wo_45

Pot and MLB's Joint Drug Agreement

Unlikely NCAA Tourney heroes

Every starting QB ranked by mobility

WATCH: CP3 goes nuts

UFC must make Rousey vs. Cyborg happen

Suh to Dolphins a 'done' deal?

Why haven't brands shown love to James Harden?

Nobody’s safe in the NFL and nothing is sacred

Tim Lincecum’s last best chance

Ten most underrated players in the NBA

Stevens: LeBron looks like the MVP

Spiller: EJ Manuel learned not to be 'buddy buddy' with everyone

Today's Best Stuff
For Bloggers

Join the Yardbarker Network for more promotion, traffic, and money.

Company Info
Help
What is Yardbarker?

Yardbarker is the largest network of sports blogs and pro athlete blogs on the web. This site is the hub of the Yardbarker Network, where our editors and algorithms curate the best sports content from our network and beyond.