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Friday, Nov 17, 2017
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Bucs' defensive coaching staff in place

TAMPA - Tampa Bay Buccaneers defensive coordinator Bill Sheridan will have a staff of six assistants, including a front-seven coach. The team announced its complete defensive staff on Thursday. Ron Cooper is the defensive backs coach, former NFL linebacker Bryan Cox the front seven, Bob Fraser the linebackers coach, Jeff Hafley the assistant defensive backs coach, Tem Lukabu the defensive quality control coach and Randy Melvin the defensive line coach. The team previously introduced Sheridan, who will run head coach Greg Schiano's defensive scheme.
Also, Bob Ligasheski will be the special teams coordinator, Schiano said Thursday at the NFL combine in Indianapolis. Offensive staff members confirmed by Schiano included receivers coach P.J. Fleck, line coach Bob Bostad and tight ends coach Brian Angelichio. "We're not all done yet. We probably have, I think, three positions still to fill,'' Schiano said. "Some are assistant positions, but I'm comfortable with the pool of people that we have and I'm not going to rush.'' A quarterbacks coach is one of the positions that still has to be filled, he said. Cox was a linebacker for the Dolphins, Bears, Jets, Patriots and Saints during a 12-year playing career. He first got to know Schiano when Tampa Bay's new coach was an assistant on Dave Wannstedt's staff in Chicago. Cox started his coaching career with the Jets in 2006 as an assistant defensive line coach. He moved on to Cleveland in 2009 as defensive line coach and worked with Sheridan on Miami's staff last season as the pass rush coach of the Dolphins. Cooper, a former head coach at Eastern Michigan, Louisville and Alabama A&M, coached LSU's secondary for the past three years, helping cornerbacks Morris Claiborne and Patrick Peterson win the Jim Thorpe Award as the nation's top defensive back in the past two seasons. Peterson enjoyed a standout rookie year with the Cardinals in 2011, and Claiborne is rated one of the top prospects in this year's draft. Fraser, Hafley, Lukabu, Melvin, Fleck and Angelichio all worked at Rutgers during some point in Schiano's 11-year tenure with the Scarlet Knights. Melvin coached the defensive line for the B.C. Lions of the Canadian Football League last season as they won the Grey Cup.

Reporter Roy Cummings contributed to this report.

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