The Indianapolis Colts today hired Rob Chudzinski as special assistant to the head coach.
“Rob and I have a long professional relationship and his résumé speaks for itself,” said Head Coach Chuck Pagano. “He brings a wealth of knowledge and will be a tremendous help to our entire team moving forward. Needless to say, we’re excited to have ‘Chud’ joining our family.”
Pagano and Chudzinski previously spent eight seasons together in the collegiate and NFL ranks. Pagano served as a graduate assistant at the University of Miami (Fla.) during Chudzinski’s freshman year at the school in 1986. The two then coached the Hurricanes together from 1995-2000. After that, they spent the 2004 season together with the Cleveland Browns.
Chudzinski holds 20 years of coaching experience, including the last 10 seasons in the NFL. He most recently served as the head coach of the Cleveland Browns in 2013. Under Chudzinski, the Browns offense finished 18th in the NFL in total offense and 11th in passing yards, their highest finish since 1991. The team also finished ninth in total defense, marking their highest ranking since 1994. Cleveland recorded 40.0 sacks as a team and tied for the league lead with 16 total players with a sack.
Chudzinski coached five Pro Bowl and five Associated Press All-Pro selections in Cleveland, including wide receiver Josh Gordon, who became the first Browns player to lead the NFL in receiving yards (1,646). Gordon, who played in just 14 games, also recorded the 10th-most receiving yards in a season in NFL history. Tight end Jordan Cameron posted career highs with 80 receptions for 917 yards and seven touchdowns. His receiving yards ranked second among NFL tight ends in 2013, while his receptions total ranked third.
Prior to joining the Browns, Chudzinski spent two years (2011-12) as offensive coordinator of the Carolina Panthers. In 2011, the team set club records for total yards (6,237) and first downs (345), one year after experiencing franchise lows in both categories. Carolina scored 48 touchdowns overall after recording 17 the year before his arrival. Chudzinski tutored quarterback Cam Newton, who became the first rookie in NFL history to throw for 4,000 yards, while setting an NFL record for rushing touchdowns by a quarterback with 14 en route to being named the 2011 Associated Press Offensive Rookie of the Year. The Panthers also became the first team in NFL history with three 700-yard rushers in DeAngelo Williams (836), Jonathan Stewart (761) and Newton (706).
Chudzinski had two stints with the San Diego Chargers, where he served as the assistant head coach/tight ends from 2009-2010 and tight ends coach from 2005-06. He tutored tight end Antonio Gates, who recorded both of his 1,000-yard receiving seasons under Chudzinski in 2005 and 2009.
From 2007-08, Chudzinski served as the offensive coordinator of the Browns. In 2007, the Browns scored 402 points and tallied 5,621 yards of total offense, both of which ranked as the third-most in franchise history. In addition, the team tied for seventh in the NFL in touchdowns and eighth in total offense after finishing 30th and 31st, respectively, the year prior.
Chudzinski began his NFL coaching career in 2004 as the Browns tight ends coach, where he worked with first-round draft choice Kellen Winslow. During the season, he was elevated to offensive coordinator for the final five games following Butch Davis’ resignation as head coach.
From 1994-2003, Chudzinski coached at his alma mater, the University of Miami (Fla.). He spent two seasons (1994-95) as a graduate assistant, five (1996-2000) as tight ends coach and three (2001-03) as offensive coordinator. During his three seasons as offensive coordinator, the Hurricanes compiled a record of 35-3 and played in a BCS Bowl Game every year, including two National Championship appearances. Chudzinski helped shape several future NFL Pro Bowlers, including Bubba Franks, Frank Gore, Andre Johnson, Willis McGahee, Bryant McKinnie, Clinton Portis, Jeremy Shockey and Kellen Winslow.
Chudzinski played tight end at Miami from 1986-1990, as he was a three-year starter and a member of two national championship teams (1987 and 1989). He graduated with a B.A. in business administration in 1990 and went on to earn his MBA in 1996. Chudzinski and his wife, Sheila, have two sons, Kaelan and Rian, and one daughter, Margaret.
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