Dunn previously coached tight ends with the New York Jets GREEN BAY – Over the weekend, the Packers officially promoted John Dunn from his role as senior analyst to tight ends coach following the departure of Justin Outten, who’s now the offensive coordinator of the Denver Broncos.
Here are five things to know about Dunn:
1. Dunn has coached tight ends before in the NFL.
Before joining the Packers in 2021, Dunn served for two years as the tight ends coach for the New York Jets. Dunn oversaw the development of 2018 fourth-round pick Chris Herndon and Ryan Griffin, who caught 34 passes for 320 yards and a career-high five touchdowns after being signed just before training camp in 2019.
Dunn also was an assistant coach on John Fox’s coaching staff with the Chicago Bears in 2016-17. His primary responsibilities included coaching receivers and quarterbacks while also helping install offensive-line protections each week. It was in Chicago Dunn met then-Bears offensive coordinator Dowell Loggains, whom he’d later reunite with on Adam Gase’s staff in New York.
2. Dunn has coordinated offenses before, too.
Between his first two NFL jobs, Dunn served for one season as Randy Edsall’s associate head coach/offensive coordinator at the University of Connecticut in 2018.
Dunn oversaw an offense that produced two 1,000-yard rushers, as running back Kevin Mensah (1,045 yards) became the first UConn RB to surpass 1,000 yards rushing since 2011 and quarterback David Pindell (1,139 yards) established a school rushing record among QBs.
3. He has strong ties to the now-retired Edsall.
During his time coaching at Maryland, Edsall gave Dunn his first big coaching break when he hired him as his tight ends coach/recruiting coordinator in 2011. Dunn served in that capacity for five seasons, leading a recruiting effort that inked a top-35 class in two of his last three seasons.
4. Dunn was one of several young assistants Matt LaFleur hired last March.
Having lost a few offensive assistants to promotions elsewhere in the NFL, LaFleur hired several young coaches last March to help replace them on his coaching staff. That included Dunn and new assistant offensive line coach Ryan Mahaffey, who served as an offensive quality control coach last year.
Dunn was hired in Green Bay to replace departing senior analyst Butch Barry, who left last offseason to become the San Francisco 49ers’ assistant offensive line coach. Dunn worked from the coaches’ box last season.
5. After a neck injury ended his playing career at North Carolina, Dunn got his start in coaching with the Tar Heels.
Dunn walked on at North Carolina in 2001.After moving from quarterback to tight end, Dunn played in seven games for the Tar Heels in 2003 before a neck injury ended his playing career. After starting as a student assistant at UNC, Dunn worked as an offensive quality control coach in 2005 and finally an offensive graduate assistant in 2006/07.
His star pupil was former Giants receiver Hakeem Nicks, who earned first-team All-Atlantic Coast Conference honors after setting a single-season school record with 74 receptions for 958 yards (12.9 avg.) and five TDs in 2007. Dunn earned a degree in exercise sport science while at UNC.