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Pires named linebackers coach, Johnson retained


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FLOWERY BRANCH, Ga. -- The Atlanta Falcons today named Glenn Pires the team s new linebackers coach and retained Billy White Shoes Johnson as assistant strength and conditioning coach.

Pires joins the Falcons after spending the past five seasons with the Miami Dolphins as the assistant linebackers coach (2007), defensive quality control coach (2005-2006) and assistant defensive line coach (2003-2004). He served as the linebackers coach for two seasons with the Detroit Lions (2001-2002) following his start in the NFL with the Arizona Cardinals where he spent five years as the linebackers coach (1996-2000).

Pires started his coaching career as a graduate assistant at Syracuse University in 1983. He spent four seasons at Dartmouth College (1985-1988) as the defensive line/linebackers coach before returning to Syracuse in 1989 as the defensive line coach. Following two years, he served as the outside linebackers coach for the Orange before at one-year stint at Michigan State University as the outside linebackers coach.

A graduate of Springfield College, Pires was a four-year letterman as an offensive lineman while earning his bachelor s degree in education in 1980. Pires and his wife, Lynn, have a daughter, Jackie, and a son, Michael.

Johnson enters his third year as the Falcons assistant strength and conditioning coach and will work with Jeff Fish, Atlanta s newly appointed strength and conditioning coach.

White Shoes had previously spent 12 years spearheading the Falcons player programs and player development department, dating back to 1994. A former Pro Bowl player, Johnson was a former 15th round draft choice in 1974 by the Houston Oilers. In 1982, he joined the Falcons and set four NFL records on top of the seven he previously set in Houston. It was also in a Falcons uniform that Johnson broke the NFL record for career punt returns and punt return yardage. Both of the marks have since been broken.

Johnson has been recognized as a member of the College Football Hall of Fame (2000) and was also selected as a member of the Pennsylvania Sports Hall of Fame.

Falcons Coaching Staff

Mike Smith (Head Coach), Emmitt Thomas (Assistant Head Coach/Secondary Coach), Mike Mularkey (Offensive Coordinator), Brian VanGorder (Defensive Coordinator), Keith Armstrong (Special Teams Coordinator), Paul Boudreau (Offensive Line), Gerald Brown (Running Backs Coach), Joe Danna (Defensive Quality Control), Paul Dunn (Assistant Offensive Line Coach), Jeff Fish (Strength and Conditioning Coach), Ray Hamilton (Defensive Line Coach), Bill Hughan (Assistant Strength and Conditioning Coach), Billy White Shoes Johnson (Assistant Strength and Conditioning Coach) Tom McMahon (Assistant Special Teams Coach), Bill Musgrave (Quarterbacks Coach), Glenn Pires (Linebackers Coach) Alvin Reynolds (Defensive Backs Coach), Terry Robiskie (Wide Receivers Coach), Chris Scelfo (Tight Ends Coach), Glenn Thomas (Offensive Quality Control Coach).

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