COACHES
Tony Oden
Defensive Backs/Corners

Biography

A 14-year coaching veteran when it comes to tutoring NFL defensive backs, Tony Oden joined the Lions coaching staff in 2014 as the team’s defensive backs/cornerbacks coach. Prior to coming to Detroit, Oden served as the secondary coach for the Tampa Bay Buccaneers, where he specialized in the development of the team’s cornerbacks.

A 14-year coaching veteran when it comes to tutoring NFL defensive backs, Tony Oden joined the Lions coaching staff in 2014 as the team’s defensive backs/cornerbacks coach. Prior to coming to Detroit, Oden served as the secondary coach for the Tampa Bay Buccaneers, where he specialized in the development of the team’s cornerbacks.

ODEN’S COACHING HIGHLIGHTS

2016: The Lions cornerbacks continued their growth under Oden in 2016 en route to a berth in the NFC Wild Card game. CB Darius Slay, who signed a contract extension through 2020 in training camp, continued to provide stability to a blossoming position group that featured new faces and youthful talent.

  • Slay’s two interceptions in 2016 led directly to Lions victories. He tied for an NFL-high two interceptions inside the final two minutes of the fourth quarter, picking off passes against Philadelphia (10/9) to seal the win and against Minnesota (11/6) to set up the game-winning field goal.
  • CB Nevin Lawson, in his third season, played in all 16 games for the first time in his career, finishing with a career-high 56 total tackles (45 solo) and nine pass defenses, which ranked second on the team.
  • In his first year with the Lions, CB Johnson Bademosi saw three starts at cornerback and recorded the first interception of his career at Houston (10/30).
  • CB Adairius Barnes earned a spot on Detroit’s 53-man active roster as an undrafted rookie free agent following a strong training camp and saw action in seven games (one start). He totaled four tackles (three solo) and three special teams tackles as a rookie).

2015: Oden developed the Lions’ cornerbacks into one of the most versatile units in the NFL in 2015, combining veteran experience with up-and-coming talent on the Lions roster.

  • Oden displayed strong in-game coaching in Green Bay in Week 10 (11/15). Lawson, in just his second start, went down with an injury in the fourth quarter, forcing newly-signed CB Crezdon Butler into the game against Packers QB Aaron Rodgers. Butler deflected away a potential game-winning touchdown pass in the fourth quarter in his first play of the game, which proved to be pivotal in the Lions’ 18-16 victory.
  • Slay (13) and Lawson (7) combined for 20 pass defenses in 2015, while Slay added two interceptions (second on the team).
  • Rookie CB Quandre Diggs emerged as the Lions’ go-to option at the nickel, as he finished his first NFL season with 35 total tackles (28 solo), six pass defenses, one forced fumble and one fumble recovery. He recorded a pass defense in three of the final five games of the season.

2014: In Oden’s first season as Detroit’s cornerbacks coach, Slay finished tied for ninth in the NFL in 2014 with a team-high 17 pass defenses, which also ranked second among all rookie and second-year players. He also recorded the first two interceptions of his career with picks in Week 4 at New York Jets (9/28) and Week 15 vs. Minnesota (12/14).

  • CB Rashean Mathis concluded his 12th NFL season with 51 total tackles (42 solo), one interception, nine pass defenses and one forced fumble. He returned his lone interception 41 yards for a touchdown in Week 5 vs. Buffalo (10/5), the fourth pick-six of his career.

Under Oden’s guidance in 2013, the Buccaneers defense finished tied for third in the NFL in interceptions with 21, fourth in interception return yards with 338 and tied for seventh in interception return touchdowns with three. Twelve of the team’s 21 picks that season came from the Tampa Bay secondary, including a team-leading three from rookie CB Johnthan Banks. CB Darrelle Revis was also named to his fifth Pro Bowl as the leader of Oden’s position group after missing most of the 2012 season with an ACL injury.

Prior to his time in Tampa, Oden was the Jacksonville Jaguars defensive backs coach in 2012 after spending six seasons (2006-2011) with the New Orleans Saints. While with the Saints, he was a member of a coaching staff that won three NFC South division titles (2006, 2009, 2011) and helped guide the team to a victory over the Indianapolis Colts in Super Bowl XLIV. Oden’s Saints teams twice finished in the Top-5 in passing yards allowed during his six seasons, ranking third in 2006 (178.4 yards/g) and fourth in 2010 (193.9 yards/g).

Oden’s NFL coaching roots began in 2004 when he worked with the Houston Texans as a defensive assistant/assistant defensive backs coach. In his two years with Houston, the Texans set franchise records in interceptions (22) and interception return yards (393).

From 1996-2003, Oden held various defensive assistant coaching positions at Eastern Michigan (2003), East Carolina (2000-02), Army (1998-99), Boston College (1997) and Millersville (Pa.) University (1996). He is a native of Cleveland Heights, Ohio where he was a two-time all-conference selection at linebacker for Baldwin-Wallace College. As a junior, he earned All-America recognition and was named captain as a senior.

This spring Oden will be inducted in the Cleveland Heights High School Hall of Fame.

Oden and his wife, Amanda, have a son, Jaylen, and a daughter, Ryan.

 

ODEN’S COACHING BACKGROUND

Detroit Lions....................................................................... 2014-

      Defensive Backs/Corners....................................... 2014-

Tampa Bay Buccaneers..................................................... 2013

      Secondary/Cornerbacks................................................. 2013

Jacksonville Jaguars......................................................... 2012

      Defensive Backs............................................................ 2012

New Orleans Saints............................................................ 2006-2011

      Secondary...................................................................... 2011

      Assistant Secondary...................................................... 2006-2010

Houston Texans................................................................. 2004-05

      Defensive Assistant/Assistant Defensive Backs............ 2004-05

Eastern Michigan............................................................... 2003

      Defensive Backs............................................................ 2003

East Carolina...................................................................... 2000-02

      Safeties.......................................................................... 2002

      Secondary...................................................................... 2001

      Outside Linebackers...................................................... 2000

Army.................................................................................... 1998-99

      Assistant Defensive Backs............................................ 1998-99

Boston College................................................................... 1997

      Graduate Assistant........................................................ 1997

Millersville (Pa.) University................................................ 1996

      Assistant Defensive Backs............................................. 1996

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