The new Alliance of American Football team in San Diego has a familiar name at the helm.
Mike Martz, 67, the former Detroit Lions offensive coordinator and St. Louis Rams head coach, on Thursday was introduced as head coach of San Diego’s AAF team, which will begin play in February 2019 with seven other teams.
“I can’t tell you how excited and thrilled and honored I am for this opportunity,” Martz told reporters. “How good is this? Coaching football in San Diego. It doesn’t get any better.”
Martz was offensive coordinator for the Rams’ “Greatest Show on Turf” team in 1999 that won the Super Bowl. He was then head coach of the Rams for five and a half seasons before landing the OC job with the Lions, where he directed a pass-happy offense for two seasons (2006-07) before being fired.
His last two jobs in the NFL were offensive coordinator for the 49ers (2008) and Bears (2010-11).
Other AAF teams set to begin play in 2019 are in Atlanta, Memphis, Orlando, Tempe and Salt Lake City. The AAF would like to add two more for an initial eight-team league.
The league is clearly making it a point to hire “name” coaches. In addition to Martz, the AAF has hired Brad Childress (Atlanta), Mike Singletary (Memphis), Steve Spurrier (Orlando), Rick Neuheisel (Tempe) and Dennis Erickson (Salt Lake City).