The Steelers hired Tom Bradley as the team’s new defensive backs coach.
“I want to thank Coach (Mike) Tomlin and the entire Steelers organization for this opportunity,” said Bradley. “I am excited to be a part of such a rich tradition here. We have a great nucleus in the defensive backs room, and my goal is to help this group continue to grow and develop as we all work toward one goal.”
Bradley, a former defensive back at Penn State University, joined the coaching ranks in 1979 as a graduate assistant at Penn State, and over 30 years at the school worked his way up to defensive coordinator from 2000-2011, and the interim head coach in 2011.
Under Bradley’s guidance, Penn State’s defenses were regularly among the top in the national rankings. From 2004-09 he led Penn State to six consecutive Top 15 finishes in total and scoring defense, and from 2004-11 Penn State held 53 of its 88 opponents to 17 points or fewer, including 10 games in the 2009 season.
In addition, during the span from 2004-11, Penn State’s defense ranked in the Top 10 nationally in points allowed seven times and the Top 20 in total defense seven times. The 2008 Penn State defense was one of only four groups to rank in the Top 10 nationally in rushing, total and scoring defense, as well as lead the Big 10 in both rushing and total defense.
During his time at Penn State the Nittany Lions had 13 double-figure win seasons, 20 seasons with at least nine wins, 27 bowl appearances and won two National Championships. He was named the Rivals Defensive Coordinator of the Year in 2008 and the Associated Press Defensive Coordinator of the Year in 2005.
Bradley spent the 2014 season at West Virginia University where he served as the senior associate head coach. He was the defensive coordinator at UCLA from 2014-17.
In his first season at UCLA the Bruins defense gave up just 4.9 yards per play, the lowest in the Pac-12 conference. The secondary led the conference in fewest yards per game and in team pass defense efficiency. The Bruins matched the 4.9 yards per game in 2016, tying for second in the Pac-12.
Bradley is originally from Johnstown, Pa., and was inducted into the Western Pennsylvania Sports Hall of Fame in May of 2014.
Bradley is replacing Carnell Lake, who stepped down to spend more time with his family.