[Topeka Capital-Journal] The purge of the Chiefs coaching staff will not include coordinator Gunther Cunningham.
New coach Herman Edwards confirmed Wednesday that Cunningham, Kansas City’s defensive coordinator of the past two seasons, will return in that capacity in 2006. Edwards once interviewed Cunningham for a position in 2004, the year Cunningham returned to the Chiefs after a three-year stint with Tennessee.
Several other Chiefs assistants will be looking for new work, however.
Irv Eatman, the assistant coach of the offensive line that included three Pro Bowl players, and Vernon Dean, an assistant secondary coach, both confirmed that they would not be retained on Edwards’ staff.
Edwards, who has said he will maintain a smaller staff than the league-high 20 assistants Dick Vermeil employed, declined to identify other coaches who will not be retained.
But broadcast reports from Kansas City said several other assistants had been advised to contact other teams.
Among them were defensive backs coach Peter Giunta, who was defensive coordinator for Vermeil’s 1999 Super Bowl championship team in St. Louis; defensive line coaches Bob Karmelowicz and Carl Hairston; tight ends coach Jason Verduzco and special teams coach Frank Gansz and his assistant, Chad O’Shea.
“When you look at the overview of this football team, these coaches have done a great job,” Edwards said. “They won 10 games last year and had a shot at the playoffs. But sometimes you have to make changes on both sides of the ball. I have to give these guys a chance to interview just like I’ve got to interview some guys. It works out for both parties.”