Jacques Cesaire enters his second season as defensive line coach for the Houston Texans in 2023. Cesaire joined the Texans after spending two seasons (2020-21) as the Buffalo Bills' assistant defensive line coach. He enters his ninth year of coaching, including three in the NFL, and 12 years of overall NFL experience, including nine as a player.
In his first season with the Texans in 2022, Cesaire coached a defensive line that featured a mix of experienced veterans and developing young players. The defense recorded 11 multi-sack games during the season, with DL Jerry Hughes leading the team with 9.0 sacks, the third-most of his 13-year career and most since 2014. Hughes became just the third player in Texans history to record an interception, a forced fumble and a sack in the same game and the first player to do it all in the first half vs. Indianapolis in Week 1. Under Cesaire's leadership, second-year player DL Roy Lopez surpassed his rookie stats in tackles (36), solo tackles (20), tackles for loss (6) and passes defensed (1), while recording his first career safety in Week 13 vs. Cleveland.
With the Bills in 2021, Cesaire helped coach a unit that led the NFL in both total defense (272.8 yards pe game) and scoring defense (17.0 points per game). DL Greg Rousseau led all rookie defensive linemen with 50 tackles (42 solo) and one interception while tying for the lead in sacks (4.0) and forced fumbles (1). Rousseau also posted eight tackles for loss, tied for third-most among Bills rookies since the 1999 season. In Cesaire's first season with Buffalo in 2020, the Bills ranked sixth in the NFL with an 80.5 pass rushing grade from Pro Football Focus.
Prior to his time in Buffalo, Cesaire spent five seasons (2015-19) as the defensive line coach at the University of San Diego. The Toreros won at least a share of the Pioneer Football League Championship in every season he spent with the team. Cesaire coached DL Jonathan Petersen from 2015-17, who set a Football Championship Subdivision record with 44.0 career sacks. As a senior in 2017, Petersen was named the PFL Defensive Player of the Year and earned first-team All-American honors from four major publications (AP, STATS, AFCA and Walter Camp) after recording 18.0 sacks, 25.5 tackles for loss and seven forced fumbles.
As a player, Cesaire spent nine seasons (2003-11) as a defensive end for the San Diego Chargers after entering the NFL as an undrafted free agent in 2003. He appeared in 125 games (66 starts) and totaled 275 tackles (157 solo), 12.5 sacks, 27 tackles for loss, three forced fumbles and one fumble recovery.
Cesaire played collegiately at Southern Connecticut State (1998-2002), finishing his career with 206 tackles, 54 tackles for loss, 21.0 sacks and four forced fumbles. As a senior in 2002, Cesaire was named the Northeast-10 Conference Defensive Lineman of the Year and earned All-American honors from the AFCA. Cesaire was inducted to the school's Hall of Fame in 2019.
Born in Worcester, Mass., Cesaire earned a degree in liberal studies from Southern Connecticut State. Cesaire and his wife, Jill, have a daughter, Viviana, and two sons, Desmond and Cassius.
2022-23 Defensive Line Houston Texans
2020-21 Assistant Defensive Line Buffalo Bills
2015-19 Defensive Line University of San Diego