Mark Duffner | Cincinnati Bengals

Team: Cincinnati Bengals
Organization: Pro Football
Position: Senior Defensive Assistant
League: National Football League
Hometown: Annandale, Virginia


Mark Duffner joins the Bengals after spending the last three seasons with the Tampa Bay Buccaneers as linebackers coach. Last season, Duffner served as defensive coordinator for the Bucs’ final 11 games, after the team made mid-season coaching staff changes.

Duffner brings with him 45 years of coaching experience, including 22 years in the NFL. He previously spent six seasons (1997-02) on the Bengals’ coaching staff, including two seasons as the team’s defensive coordinator in ’01 and ’02. He also has spent time with the Green Bay Packers (2003-05), the Jacksonville Jaguars (’06-13) and the Miami Dolphins (’14-15).

While with the Dolphins, Duffner helped bring Jelani Jenkins from a chiefly special teams player into a starting role, where Jenkins proceeded to lead the team with 108 tackles in 2014, becoming one of only three players in the NFL that season to record 100+ tackles, 3.5 or more sacks and two-or-more forced fumbles.

Prior to his time with Miami, Duffner spent eight seasons (2006-13) coaching linebackers with the Jacksonville Jaguars, where he helped Paul Posluszny earn a Pro Bowl selection following the 2013 season, marking the first time a Jacksonville linebacker had earned that distinction since 1999.

From 2003-05, Duffner worked with the Green Bay Packers, where he was instrumental in developing first-round draft pick Nick Barnett, who led the team in tackles for each of his three years under Duffner’s instruction. In 2005, the Green Bay defense finished the season ranked first in the league against the pass and seventh overall.

Duffner’s first foray into the NFL came with the Cincinnati Bengals, where he spent six seasons as linebackers coach (1997-2000) and defensive coordinator (2001-02). In his first year as coordinator in 2001, the Bengals defense allowed the unit’s fewest points (309) since 1989 and fewest yards per game (302) since 1983. In addition, the defense set a franchise single-season record for sacks that year with 48, a mark that stood for 11 seasons.

In the college coaching ranks, Duffner compiled an 80-40-1 record as a collegiate head coach for both the University of Maryland (1992-96) and The College of the Holy Cross (1986-91). While with the Terrapins, Duffner led the team to their best two-season record in over a decade during his final two years, as well as seeing Maryland return to the national rankings in 199 for the first time in nine seasons. As head coach of the Crusaders, Holy Cross won five Patriot League championships, four Lambert Cups and four ECAC Team of the Year awards. Duffner’s team also earned the No. 1 ranking in the final 1987 NCAA Division I-AA poll. He was named Patriot League Coach of the Year four times, while also earning National Coach of the Year honors in 1987 and 1991. Duffner’s .917 winning percentage (60-5-1) was the best in school and Patriot League history when he left the program. He was inducted into The College of Holy Cross Hall of Fame in 2008.

Duffner broke into coaching as a graduate assistant at Ohio State, working under Woody Hayes from 1975-76 while he earned a master’s degree. He moved on to the defensive coordinator’s role at the University of Cincinnati, a position he held for four years, from 1977-80.

Originally from Annandale, Virginia, Duffner played collegiate football at William & Mary from 1972-74. He was inducted into the Tribe’s Hall of Fame in 1990.

Duffner and his wife, Kathy have two daughters, Christina and Carolyn, and one son, John, as well as two granddaughters, Camilla and Ava.


1972-74, William & Mary, Player
1975-76, Ohio State, Graduate Assistant
1977-1980, University of Cincinnati, Defensive Coordinator
1981-85, The College of the Holy Cross, Defensive Coordinator
1986-91, The College of the Holy Cross, Head Coach
1992-96, University of Maryland, Head Coach
1997-2000, Cincinnati Bengals, Linebackers Coach
2001-02, Cincinnati Bengals, Defensive Coordinator
2003-05, Green Bay Packers, Linebackers Coach
2006-13, Jacksonville Jaguars, Linebackers Coach
2014-15, Miami Dolphins, Linebackers Coach
2016-2018, Tampa Bay Buccaneers, Linebackers Coach
2019-Present, Cincinnati Bengals, Senior Defensive Assistant

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