Duffner Excited To Join Staff

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With almost three decades of coaching experience under his belt, Mark Duffner joined his second NFL staff Thursday when GM/Head Coach Mike Sherman named him the Packers' linebackers coach.

"I'm excited about the opportunity," said Duffner, who spent the previous six seasons with the Cincinnati Bengals, the last two as defensive coordinator.

"To have the chance to join (the Packers), a franchise that's so steeped in success and tradition, it's something I think that most coaches would love the opportunity to be a part of, so I'm very excited to become part of the Packers organization."

This marks the second time that Duffner and Sherman have joined forces in their coaching careers.

In the mid-80s they coached together at Holy Cross, Sherman joining the staff as an offensive line coach when Duffner was defensive coordinator in 1985, before becoming offensive coordinator in 1988 after Duffner had assumed the head coaching position.

Sherman moved on to Texas A&M in 1989.

Due to their busy schedules, Duffner said the contact between the two has been occasional since then, but when Marvin Lewis was awarded Cincinnati's head coaching position there was an immediate interest in bringing Duffner to Green Bay.

"Once Marvin Lewis was named the head football coach, there was an effort for me to stay (in Cincinnati) on this staff, but I felt like probably it was good for me at this point to move on," Duffner said.

Duffner plans to report for duty in Green Bay Sunday, at which point he will begin to get acquainted with the Packers' current corps of linebackers.

"To be honest, I really have not studied these guys, haven't had any chance at this point to look at them on film," Duffner said.

"I'm anxious to get the opportunity to work with this group. I understand that they did have some contribution in terms of helping that defense lead the league in turnovers. That's something that I'm going to work hard to help them improve in their play, to be contributors in that defense, and go from there."

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