Looking at the Coaches: Secondary

Secondary Coach:

Timothy Lamar Walton 

Birth date: March 11, 1971 

Hometown: Grenada, Mississippi 

Education: B.A. in sociology, Ohio State University, Columbus, Ohio (1994) 



Tim Walton joined the Lions as secondary coach in 2009. Before coming to Detroit, he was the defensive coordinator at the University of Memphis (2008) and had additional responsibilities coaching the safeties. Throughout his 14-year collegiate coaching career, Walton coached 13 players who were eventually drafted into the NFL, including five first round picks (Patriots S Brandon Merriweather, Seahawks CB Kelly Jennings, Giants CB Kenny Phillips, Redskins S LaRon Landry and Cardinals S Antrel Rolle) and four second round picks (S Idrees Bashir, WR/KR Devin Hester, S Michael Stone and CB Corey Webster).

Prior to joining the Tigers, Walton spent the previous four seasons (2004-07) with the Miami Hurricanes. He was promoted to defensive coordinator in February of 2007 and helped propel the defense to a national ranking of 33rd in total defense. In his first three seasons at Miami, he coached the defensive backs and the Miami secondary ranked in the top 10 nationally in pass defense in 2004 (ninth) and 2005 (first). 

In 2005, Walton's pass defense led the nation, allowing only 152.17 yards per game, and featured All-Americans safety Brandon Meriweather and cornerback Kelly Jennings as well as Freshman All-American Kenny Phillips.

Walton was at LSU in 2003 and his defensive backs were a key factor in the Tigers earning the 2003 BCS National Championship and a Southeastern Conference title. The LSU defense ranked among the nation's top three in four-of-five major defensive statistical categories: total defense (first, 252.0 yards per game), scoring defense (first, 11.0 ppg), pass efficiency defense (second, 89.8 rating) and rushing defense (third, 67.0 yards per game).
Additionally, LSU ranked 18th nationally in passing yardage defense (185.0 ypg) while leading the SEC in four of the five defensive categories, including a No. 2 ranking in the league in pass defense. 

In his first stint with Memphis (2000-01), Walton coached defensive backs. In 2000, the Tigers ranked fifth in the nation in total defense (first in rush defense), allowing only 275 yards per game and placed in the top 15 nationally in passing and scoring defense. He left Memphis to coach defensive backs at Syracuse for the 2002 season. 

Walton began his coaching career as a defensive graduate assistant at Bowling Green in 1995. He was promoted to running backs coach in 1996 and then moved to coach the defensive backs in 1999. 

In addition to his collegiate coaching experience, Walton has had three summer internships with NFL teams. He spent the summer of 1998 serving as a defensive intern with the Chicago Bears, the summer of 2001 as a defensive intern for the Green Bay Packers and in 2004 with the Tampa Bay Buccaneers under current Pittsburgh Steelers Head Coach Mike Tomlin.

As a defensive back at Ohio State, Walton lettered four seasons and served as co-captain for the Big Ten champions in 1993. During his time with the Buckeyes, OSU went to four bowl games, including the Liberty Bowl in 1990. He earned his bachelor's degree in sociology from OSU in 1994. 
Walton and his wife, Tracy, have three children: Trei, Timia and Tyler. 


Detroit Lions 2009-present
• Secondary 2009-present

Memphis 2008
• Defensive Coordinator 2008

Miami (Fla.) 2004-07
• Defensive Coordinator 2007
• Defensive Backs 2004-06

Louisiana State 2003
• Defensive Backs 2003

Syracuse 2002
• Defensive Backs 2002

Memphis 2000-01
• Defensive Backs 2000-01

Bowling Green  1995-99
• Defensive Backs 1999
• Running Backs 1996-98
• Defensive Graduate Assistant 1995

Looking at the rankings he's got out of his defense's leads me to believe that he knows what he's doing. However, that hasn't completely translated to the Lions secondary, which has been one of the worst in the league the past few years.  However, last year was the first time in 4 years they weren't in the top 10 in most passing yards given up. They were ranked 17th, and their pass defense as a whole was ranked 19th in the league. They are slowly getting better. A lot of that has to do with the defensive line(at least in my opinion). 

Walton has shown the ability to put together good defensive backfields on the college level, I'm hoping it can translate to the pro's, and hopefully sooner rather then later. With the front four being the strength of the Lions D, it should make Walton's job a little easier. 

I do see a good coach in him though. Look at Amari Spievey.  I don't think he's make it as anything more then a nickle corner in the NFL, even though I was excited when he was drafted. Watching him at NFL speed just made me feel he didn't have the chops to be a CB. That's not always a bad thing! Look at Antrel Rolle. He was an All American CB in college, showed some promise in the NFL, but overall wasn't really suited to be an NFL CB. Now, he's a safety, and a pretty good one in my opinion. Spievey may not have looked that great when they first moved him to safety, but give the kid some credit. Safety and CB are two different position. Towards the end of the year he seemed to finally start to get it. I think that the ability to turn a rookie CB into an Safety through the course of the season takes a dedicated player, and a dedicated coach. 

If the Lions can pick up a decent CB in free agency, and keep Chris Houston, I think that the Lions Secondary can take a huge step forward next season with Walton as the coach. We just need him to work on Phonz's tackling ability. 

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This is a FanPost and does not necessarily reflect the views of Pride Of Detroit or its writers.

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