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Legendary NFL special teams coach Bruce DeHaven passes away

Posted Dec 27, 2016

After a courageous battle against cancer, legendary NFL special teams coach Bruce DeHaven has passed away.


Legendary NFL special teams coach Bruce DeHaven passed away this evening after a courageous battle against cancer.

DeHaven, who started his coaching career in the 1970's in Kansas high schools, coached special teams in the National Football League for three decades with the Buffalo Bills, San Francisco 49ers, Dallas Cowboys, Seattle Seahawks and most recently, the Carolina Panthers.

DeHaven's NFL accolades included:

His Buffalo Bills special teams units being named best by the Dallas Morning News in 1996.

Bills' punt coverage unit led the NFL with fewest yards allowed, a then-record of only 53 yards.

Bills kickoff coverage unit tops in the NFL for four consecutive seasons (1987-90).

Special teams contributed to Bills four consecutive Super Bowl trips, winning 6 AFC East titles and appearing in 21 playoff games.

Steve Tasker became a seven-time Pro Bowler.

Kicker Steve Christie set team records in 1998 with 140 points and 33 made field goals while becoming the franchise's all-time leading scorer.

Special teams onside kick contributed to Bills win over Houston Oilers in NFL's greatest comeback game.

Cowboy punter Mat McBriar ranked first in the NFL with a 48.2-yard gross average in 2006.

Cowboys' kickoff coverage unit was best in the league in 2004 by holding opponents to a 17.5 yards per return average.

Carolina punter Brad Nortman set team records with a gross average of 47.8 yards and a net average of 41.6 yards.

Special teams contributed to Panthers' Super Bowl trip.

Despite all of his remarkable coaching achievements, DeHaven's greatest source of pride centered around his wife Kathy and two children, Tobin Scott and AnnieMaude.

Outside of his love of family, DeHaven's passions were his beloved St.Louis Cardinals, his love for music and reading and the Kansas farm where he was raised.

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