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Reggie Herring
Linebackers Coach
Florida State
Myrtle Beach, S.C.

Reggie Herring is in his fifth season overall with the Texans and the third year of his second tenure as Houston’s linebackers coach. Herring re-joined the Texans as linebackers coach with the hiring of defensive coordinator Wade Phillips in 2011.

Despite numerous injuries that affected depth throughout the linebacker corps in 2012, Herring’s unit remained an integral part of the NFL’s seventh-ranked defense.

Reggie Herring is in his fifth season overall with the Texans and the third year of his second tenure as Houston’s linebackers coach. Herring re-joined the Texans as linebackers coach with the hiring of defensive coordinator Wade Phillips in 2011.

Despite numerous injuries that affected depth throughout the linebacker corps in 2012, Herring’s unit remained an integral part of the NFL’s seventh-ranked defense. Inside linebacker Brian Cushing was leading the team with 43 tackles and had one interception when he went down with a season-ending ACL injury in Week 5. Inside backer Bradie James led the unit with 105 tackles in Cushing’s absence, while veterans Tim Dobbins, Darryl Sharpton and Barrett Ruud helped shore up the middle of the defense. On the outside, rookie Whitney Mercilus tied Brooks Reed’s rookie sack record with 6.0 in spot duty from the weak side. Reed totaled 42 tackles and 2.5 sacks from the strong side, despite missing four games with a groin injury. He tied for the team lead in the postseason with 1.5 sacks.

Herring’s linebackers played a pivotal role in the third-largest defensive improvement in NFL history since the 1970 AFL-NFL merger in 2011. The Texans ranked second in the NFL in total defense, allowing 285.7 yards per game, after giving up 376.9 yards per game and ranking 30th in 2010. Houston’s linebackers accounted for 27 of a franchise-record 44 sacks, which ranked sixth in the NFL.

In 2011, Cushing earned second team AP All-Pro recognition and led the team with 114 tackles. Connor Barwin made the transition to outside linebacker from defensive end and tied for third in the AFC with a team-high 11.5 sacks. Barwin also set a franchise single-game record with 4.0 sacks at Jacksonville on Nov. 27. Reed set a Texans rookie record with 6.0 sacks on the season.

Herring also made the defensive calls in Weeks 15 and 16 of the regular season while Phillips recovered from surgery.

From 2002-03, Herring served as the Texans linebackers coach and helped former Texans linebacker Jamie Sharper lead the NFL with 166 tackles in 2003. Sharper’s tackle total from 2003 still stands as the Texans single-season standard. Linebacker Jay Foreman joined Sharper in posting back-to-back seasons with more than 130 tackles during Herring’s first two years with the team.

Prior to re-joining the Texans staff, Herring was the Dallas Cowboys linebackers coach from 2008-10, while Phillips was head coach. Dallas linebacker DeMarcus Ware led the NFL with a combined 46.5 sacks in that time, including the second-most sacks ever by a linebacker in a season and League-best 20.0 in 2008. James led the team with 202 tackles in 2008, making him the second player in Cowboys history to surpass the 200-tackle mark in a season. The Cowboys top-three tacklers were from Herring’s linebacker corps all three seasons he was in Dallas.

Herring was named defensive coordinator at Texas A&M on former Texans offensive coordinator Mike Sherman’s staff early in 2008, but left a month later to take his position with the Cowboys.

In addition to his successes as an NFL coach, Herring spent 25 years in the collegiate ranks coaching some of the country’s best defenses, and coached in 18 bowl games overall. From 2005-07, Herring was the defensive coordinator and linebackers coach at the University of Arkansas and served as the interim head coach for the Razorbacks in the 2008 AT&T Cotton Bowl Classic. Herring’s defense helped Arkansas win the 2006 Southeastern Conference Western Division and earn two postseason bowl berths. In 2006, Herring was a finalist for the Broyles Award, given annually to the nation’s top assistant coach.

Before going to Arkansas, Herring served as the defensive coordinator at North Carolina State in 2004, where the Wolfpack led the country in total defense (221.4 yards per game), pass efficiency defense, and was second in total pass defense. Herring helped coach former Texan Mario Williams to an All-America performance. 

Herring coached linebackers at Clemson from 1994-2001, and added the title of defensive coordinator in 1997. Seven of Herring’s linebackers were drafted during his tenure at Clemson, including Anthony Simmons, who was taken 15th overall by Seattle in 1998. In 2000, he coached Butkus Award finalist Keith Adams, who also led the NCAA in tackles.

Herring’s first coordinator experience came at TCU from 1992-93. He coached linebackers at Auburn from 1986-91, winning three SEC championships. His coaching career began in 1981 as a graduate assistant on Jimmy Johnson’s staff at Oklahoma State, where he was the linebackers coach from 1982-85.

A Florida State Hall of Fame selection in 1989, Herring was a three-year starting linebacker for head coach Bobby Bowden from 1978-80. He led the Seminoles in tackles all three years and is still the third-leading tackler in FSU history. He was a team captain as a senior and played in the Tangerine Bowl and the Orange Bowl twice.

The 54-year-old Myrtle Beach, S.C. native, is married to the former Lisa Ward of Griffin, Ga. The couple has a daughter, Caroline, 27, and a son, Adam, 24.

2011-13:  Linebackers, Houston Texans
2008-10:  Linebackers, Dallas Cowboys
2007:  Interim Head Coach/Cotton Bowl, Arkansas
2005-07:  Defensive Coordinator/Linebackers, Arkansas
2004:   Defensive Coordinator, North Carolina State
2002-03:  Linebackers, Houston Texans
1997-2001:  Defensive Coordinator/Linebackers, Clemson
1994-96: Linebackers, Clemson
1992-93: Defensive Coordinator, Texas Christian University
1986-91: Linebackers, Auburn
1982-85: Linebackers, Oklahoma State
1981:   Graduate Assistant, Oklahoma State 

Related News

Related Videos

  • X's and O's: Herring on 3-4 vs. 3 WR offense

    (2:44) Posted Jun 16, 2011

    When opposing offenses line up with 3 wide receivers, the Texans' defense will adjust accordingly. Linebackers coach Reggie Herring diagrams how in this X's and O's video.

  • X's and O's: Herring on 3-4 switches

    (3:51) Posted Jun 15, 2011

    Linebackers coach Reggie Herring continued his diagramming of the Texans' 3-4 scheme, showing what happens when the defense brings pressure from different spots.

  • X's and O's: Herring on LB duties in 3-4

    (4:38) Posted Jun 13, 2011

    Linebackers coach Reggie Herring went to the whiteboard and broke down what some of the linebackers' responsibilities will be in the Texans' 3-4 defense in 2011.

  • Herring on Williams, Cushing, 3-4 advantages

    (4:05) Posted Jun 9, 2011

    Linebackers coach Reggie Herring believes the sky's the limit for Mario Williams, Brian Cushing and the Texans defense in 2011, and gives the reasoning why.