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Jacksonville Jaguars Hire Falcons’ Mike Mularkey as Head Coach

Mike Mularkey will become the new coach of the Jacksonville Jaguars, returning to the state where he was born, played college football and began his National Football League coaching career.

Since 2008, Mularkey has been offensive coordinator for the Atlanta Falcons, who lost 24-2 to the New York Giants in the first round of the playoffs on Jan. 8. A press conference introducing Mularkey will be held today, the team said on its website last night.

Mularkey, 50, is a Miami native and attended the University of Florida. He began his coaching career at the Tampa Bay Buccaneers and spent two seasons with the Miami Dolphins before joining Atlanta, where he worked for head coach Mike Smith, a former Jacksonville defensive coordinator.

After a 3-8 start to the season, the Jaguars fired Jack Del Rio Nov. 29, the same day Wayne Weaver said he was selling the team to Shahid Khan for an undisclosed amount. Weaver bought the Jaguars for $208 million in 1993, two years before they started play as an expansion team. Jacksonville, which finished this season 5-11, is valued at $725 million by Forbes.

The Falcons averaged a team-record 376.6 yards per game this season on their way to a 10-6 record and back-to-back appearances in the playoffs for the first time in franchise history.

Mularkey went 14-18 as coach of the Buffalo Bills before joining the Dolphins as offensive coordinator nine days after leaving Buffalo in January 2005.

Mularkey played playing tight end for nine seasons in the NFL through 1991 with the Minnesota Vikings and the Pittsburgh Steelers, where he was also offensive coordinator for two years before joining Buffalo.

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