NFL coaching veteran Joe Bugel died Sunday at age 80.
Regarded as one of the greatest offensive line coaches of all time, Bugel served as head coach with the then-Phoenix Cardinals from 1990-93 and with the then-Oakland Raiders in 1997.
The Washington Redskins, whose fabled 1980s offensive line “The Hogs” was developed by Bugel, announced his passing.
“Joe had an incredible passion for the game of football,” former Redskins coach and Hall of Famer Joe Gibbs said in a statement. “He came to work every day with such great excitement and his players had tremendous respect for him. The strength of our coaching staff on both sides of the ball was a key reason we had so much success. Bugel was such a big part of that and his impact was felt not only by those Redskins’ teams, but truly across the entire League.
“I will miss his friendship and I will always cherish our late-night arguments putting together the game plan each week. Pat and I will be praying for his wife Brenda, his girls, and their entire family.”
Bugel spent more than four decades on college (Western Kentucky, Navy, Iowa State and Ohio State) and NFL sidelines. After coaching the offensive lines of the Detroit Lions (1975-76) and Houston Oilers (1977-80), he joined Gibbs’ staff with the Redskins and held the titles of offensive line coach, offensive coordinator and assistant head coach at various times through the 1989 season.
Washington won Super Bowl XVII and Super Bowl XXII in his tenure, during which he became known as “Boss Hog.”
After compiling a 20-44 record with the Cardinals and a 4-12 season with the Raiders, Bugel coached the offensive line for the then-San Diego Chargers (1998-2001) before finishing his career back with the Redskins (2004-09).
Cardinals owner Michael Bidwill released a statement Sunday afternoon.
“Joe Bugel impacted so many people in his 80 years of life and nearly 50 coaching football,” Bidwill said. “… His accomplishments as one of our sport’s truly legendary coaches speak for themselves. But the first thing I think of is how he lived his life and the kind of quality human being Joe Bugel was. We join all of those who today celebrate his remarkable life and mourn his passing.”
Bugel is survived by his wife, Brenda, and daughters, Angie and Jennifer. His daughter Holly Bugel passed away in 2008.
–Field Level Media