Al Saunders

Al Saunders

Al Saunders
Personal information
Date of birth (1947-02-01) February 1, 1947
Place of birth London, England
Career information
College San Jose State University
Stanford University
Head coaching record
Career record 17–22 (.436)
Coaching stats Pro Football Reference
Team(s) as a coach/administrator
1970–1971 USC
(Graduate Assistant)
1972 Missouri
(Wide Receivers)
1973–1975 Utah State
(Play-Caller/Offensive Backfield)
1976–1981 California
(Asst. Head Coach/Offensive Coordinator/Quarterbacks)
1982 Tennessee
(Offensive Coordinator/Quarterbacks)
1983–1985 San Diego Chargers
(Wide Receivers)
1986–1988 San Diego Chargers
(Head Coach)
1989–1998 Kansas City Chiefs
(Asst. Head Coach/Wide Receivers)
1999–2000 St. Louis Rams
(Asst. Head Coach/Wide Receivers)
2001–2005 Kansas City Chiefs
(Offensive Coordinator)
2006–2007 Washington Redskins
(Asst. Head Coach)
2008 St. Louis Rams
(Offensive Coordinator)
2009–2010 Baltimore Ravens
(Offensive Consultant)
2011 Oakland Raiders
(Offensive Coordinator)
2012–2014 Oakland Raiders
(Senior Offensive Assistant)
2015-present Miami Dolphins
(Senior Offensive Assistant)

Alan Keith "Al" Saunders (born February 1, 1947) is an American football coach, who is currently the senior offensive assistant for the Miami Dolphins.

Personal life

Saunders was born in the north London suburb of Hendon as part of a sporting family; his great-uncle, Ron Saunders, played soccer for a number of teams in The Football League and later became a manager, winning honours with Norwich City and Aston Villa.

When Saunders was five years old, he moved with his family to North America, settling first in Canada before moving to northern California, after being sponsored by a family from Piedmont, California.

Coaching career

From 1983–1985, Saunders was the wide receivers coach for the Chargers. He became the assistant head coach for the 1986 season, and was tapped as the Chargers' head coach when Coryell resigned during the middle of the season.[1] Saunders would eventually hold the head coaching position from 1986-1988.[2]

From 1989–1998, Saunders was with the Kansas City Chiefs, where he served as the assistant head coach and wide receivers coach under Marty Schottenheimer.[3]

Saunders would then join the St. Louis Rams coaching staff. From 1999-2000 he served as the wide receivers Coach under Dick Vermeil and later as assistant head coach under Mike Martz. During this period, the Rams won Super Bowl XXXIV in 2000.[4]

Saunders would rejoin the Kansas City Chiefs in 2001 as the offensive coordinator when Vermeil came out of retirement. In his second stint with the Chiefs, Saunders built the NFL's top offense, which was ranked #1 in the NFL from 2002–2005.[5]

On January 19, 2006, he joined the coaching staff of the Washington Redskins as the Associate Head Coach - Offense, reuniting him with fellow Don "Air" Coryell alumnus, Joe Gibbs.[5]

Saunders' offensive playbook reportedly had approximately 700 pages of various plays.[6]

After Joe Gibbs retired as head coach of the Redskins on January 8, 2008 and Jim Zorn was hired as the new offensive coordinator by Redskins' owner Dan Snyder on January 25, Saunders was fired by Snyder on January 26.[7]

On January 30, 2008, Saunders was hired as offensive coordinator for the St. Louis Rams.[4]

In 2009 Saunders was hired as an offensive consultant with the Baltimore Ravens.[8]

On January 20, 2011, Saunders was hired as the Offensive Coordinator for the Oakland Raiders.[9] Saunders was not the primary play caller, as Head Coach Hue Jackson called offensive plays during his lone season as Raiders head coach.

On January 31, 2012, following Hue Jackson's firing, new coach

Sporting positions
Preceded by
Jimmy Raye
Kansas City Chiefs Offensive Coordinator
Succeeded by
Mike Solari
Preceded by
Hue Jackson & Don Breaux
Washington Redskins Offensive Coordinator
Succeeded by
Sherman Smith
Preceded by
Greg Olson
St. Louis Rams Offensive Coordinator
Succeeded by
Pat Shurmur
Preceded by
Hue Jackson
Oakland Raiders Offensive Coordinator
Succeeded by
Greg Knapp
  1. ^ "Coryell resigns after 1–7 start". The Palm Beach Post. October 30, 1986. Retrieved January 21, 2011. 
  2. ^ "Saunders of Chargers is out as coach".  
  3. ^ Tucker, Doug (January 23, 2001). "Saunders returns as offensive guru".  
  4. ^ a b "Rams hire Saunders as offensive coordinator".  
  5. ^ a b Carter, Ivan (January 21, 2006). "Saunders Has Been Known to Mix It Up".  
  6. ^ Jenkins, Sally (September 25, 2006). "For This Week, A Complete Effort". The Washington Post. Retrieved January 21, 2011. 
  7. ^ "Redskins fire top two assistant coaches".  
  8. ^ "Raiders to interview Al Saunders".  
  9. ^ Bill Williamson (January 20, 2011). "Raiders add experience with new OC". Archived from the original on January 23, 2011. Retrieved January 21, 2011. 
  10. ^ "Saunders Returns to Raiders Coaching Staff". Archived from the original on February 10, 2012. Retrieved February 8, 2012. 
  11. ^


On October 7, 2015 Saunders was hired to the position senior offensive consultant by interim Miami Dolphins head coach Dan Campbell in the wake of the firing of Joe Philbin.[11]