Bruce DeHaven
Special Teams Coordinator


26th year in NFL/16th year with the Bills


DeHaven enters his 16th season with the Bills in 2012.  DeHaven returned to the Bills in 2010.  He previously spent 1987-1999 as the team’s special teams coordinator.

26th year in the NFL

16th year with the Bills

DeHaven enters his 16th season with the Bills in 2012.  DeHaven returned to the Bills in 2010.  He previously spent 1987-1999 as the team’s special teams coordinator.

     In 2011, DeHaven’s kickoff coverage unit held opponents to 20.4 yards per return, the best in the NFL.  Also, the team’s punt return unit finished tied for tops in the AFC and third in the NFL with 12.7 yards per punt return.

     In 2010, rookie C.J. Spiller set a Bills rookie record for kick return yards in a game with 189 (including a 95-yard touchdown) at NE on 9/26/10; Spiller was also named AFC Special Teams player of the week.

     Prior to re-joining the Bills, DeHaven served as special teams coach in the NFL with Seattle (2007-09), Dallas (2003-06), San Francisco (2000-02) and Buffalo (1987-99).

     Under DeHaven’s guidance from 2007-09, Seattle’s special teams unit accomplished the following statistical marks:

     Averaged 25.3 yards per kickoff return in 2008, ranking second-best in the league… Josh Wilson set single-season Seattle records in kickoff returns (69) and kickoff return yards (1,753) while ranking second in the NFL with eight, 40-plus yard kickoff returns

     In his first year in Seattle, DeHaven’s punt return schemes aided Nate Burleson to return one punt return and one kickoff return for a  touchdown… with a 94-yard punt return at CLE, Burleson became the only player in NFL history to return three punts 90-plus yards for a touchdown in his career… also helped K Josh Brown to a career-year, setting career-highs in field goals made (28), points scored (127) and touchbacks (13)

     Prior to joining Seattle, DeHaven spent four seasons with the Dallas Cowboys from 2003-06 where his special teams continued to shine.

     P Matt McBriar led the NFL with a 48.2 punting average in 2006, and ranked second in the NFC and fourth in the NFL with a 38.6 net punting average… PR Terence Newman was one of five NFC returners to average 10.0 or more yards per punt return

        In 2004, the Cowboys kickoff coverage unit ranked first in the league, holding opponents to an average of 17.5 yards per return

     OL Flozell Adams set a Cowboys team-record with three blocked extra point attempts in 2003… K Billy Cundiff tied the NFL record for the most field goals in a game with seven (9/15 at NYG) and Randal Williams returned an onside kickoff 37 yards for a touchdown to open the game vs. PHI (10/12)

     DeHaven spent the 2000-02 seasons as the special teams coach in San Francisco. In 2002, return man Jimmy Williams finished first in the NFL with a 16.8 yard punt return average.                     In 2001, rookie Vinny Sutherland broke the team record for most kick return yards by a rookie with 1,140. DeHaven was also instrumental in helping P Jason Baker earn All-Rookie honors the same year.

     Before his stop in San Francisco, DeHaven spent 13 seasons with the Buffalo Bills. During his tenure in Buffalo, the team made four consecutive Super Bowl appearances, won six AFC East championships and appeared in 20 playoff games. In his 13 years with the Bills, DeHaven helped develop two of the greatest special teams players in NFL history: Mark Pike and Steve Tasker. Tasker was invited to the Pro Bowl seven times as the AFC’s Special Teams Player and was voted the 1993 Pro Bowl MVP. In 1998, K Steve Christie set the Bills’ single-season club records for points (140) and field goals (33) and became the franchise’s all-time leading scorer.

     In 1996, The Dallas Morning News, in a ranking of the 19 most important statistical categories, named Bills special teams unit the best in the NFL.

     His 1991 punt coverage unit led the league in fewest punt return yards allowed 53, (a then NFL record, broken by Atlanta in 2008, 51) the lowest total since the NFL changed the rules allowing only the ends to release on punt coverage before the ball is snapped.

     Guided Buffalo’s kickoff coverage unit to the top of the NFL ranking four straight years (1987-90).

     Prior to joining Buffalo, DeHaven spent three years in different coaching capacities in the USFL. He was the running backs and special teams coach with the Orlando Renegades (1985), special teams coach and offensive line coach for the Pittsburgh Maulers (1984) and special teams and assistant offensive line coach with the New Jersey Generals (1983).

     DeHaven began his collegiate coaching career at Kansas (1979-81). With the Jayhawks, DeHaven worked with the defensive backs and offensive line as well as heading up recruiting. He served as offensive line coach and recruiting coordinator at New Mexico State in 1982.

     DeHaven began his career as a high school coach in Kansas. As an assistant at Southeast (Wichita, KS) from 1974-78, helped guide the school to three straight Kansas state football titles.



     DeHaven played eight-man football at Belpre-Trousdale (Trousdale, KS) High School… is a graduate of Southwestern College with a degree in history and political science… was a basketball standout at Southwestern, leading the team in scoring in two consecutive years… also participated in track and field… is a member of the Athletic Department’s Hall of Fame… he and his wife, Kathy, have a son Tobin Scott and a daughter AnnieMaude.



  2010-                               Buffalo Bills              Special Teams

  2007-09                           Seattle Seahawks   Special Teams

  2003-06                           Dallas Cowboys       Special Teams

  2000-02                           San Francisco 49ers               Special Teams

  1987-99                           Buffalo Bills              Special Teams


  1985     Orlando Renegades       RBs/STs

  1984     Pittsburgh Maulers        Off. Line/ST
  1983     New Jersey    Asst. Off. Line/ST      



  1982     NM State            Off. Line/Recruiting Coor.

  1979-81               Kansas DBs/Off. Line/Recruiting


HIGH SCHOOL                  

  1974-78                          Southeast               Asst. Coach

                 (Wichita, KS)

  1971-73                          Oxford HS (KS)      Head Coach

  1970     Oxford Jr. HS (KS)           Head Coach