COLLEGE STATION, Texas—A veteran NFL assistant coach and former All-Pro defensive back Nolan Cromwell has been named the offensive coordinator at Texas A&M, Aggie head coach Mike Sherman announced today.
“I have known Nolan Cromwell since I first went to Green Bay,” Sherman said. “He has always impressed me as a great teacher and passionate coach. He obviously has a wealth of experience as an NFL coach as well as a former NFL player. He has an outstanding offensive mind and has benefited from working with Mike Holmgren and having been to three Super Bowls.”
“Nolan is a great coach and even a greater person,” Sherman added. “I look forward to having him join our staff after his season is completed.”
Cromwell has been the wide receivers coach on the staff of Mike Holmgren and the Seattle Seahawks since 1999. During that time, the Seahawks have won the NFC West Division four straight seasons and Seattle has been in the playoffs five consecutive years. The Seahawks reached Super Bowl XL in Detroit against the Pittsburgh Steelers.
“I am very pleased to be joining Mike (Sherman) at Texas A&M at the conclusion of our season here in Seattle,” Cromwell said. “I look forward to the opportunities and challenges of competing in the Big 12 Conference. The Big 12 schedule is similar to the NFL, there are no easy weeks.”
“Working with the offensive staffs at Green Bay and Seattle, we have strived for balance and we have to stay balanced to keep the defense from gaining an advantage,” Cromwell added. “We need to get the ball in the hands of our playmakers.”
Cromwell worked with Holmgren and Sherman at Green Bay. Cromwell coached the wide receivers in 1998 and served as the special teams coach from 1992-97 for the Packers.
“I’ve learned a lot from Mike over the years and I have found him to be a tremendous problem solver,” Cromwell said. “He is a high energy guy and I look forward to working with him.”
Cromwell’s 2002 wide receiver corps set a franchise record for 300-yard (five) and 400-yard (two) passing games and in 2003 helped quarterback Matt Hasselbeck set a club record with 3,841 passing yards.
Before going to Seattle, Cromwell worked with the wide receivers at Green Bay in 1998 helping Pro Bowler Antonio Freeman lead the NFL with 1,424 yards on 84 catches.
From 1992-97, Cromwell headed up the special teams for the Packers. The Packers’ punt return unit led the NFL in 1996 with a 15.1-yard return average. Five different times during the 1996 season, one of Cromwell’s players was honored as Special Teams Player of the Week. Also in 1996, the Packers won Super Bowl XXXI against the New England Patriots in New Orleans with special teams player Desmond Howard winning the Super Bowl MVP honors. The following year, the Packers reached Super Bowl XXXII in San Diego against the Denver Broncos.
Cromwell’s first coaching experience came as a defensive and special teams assistant on the Rams’ staff of John Robinson in 1991.
A second-round draft choice by the Rams, Cromwell played his entire 11-year NFL career (1977-87) for the Rams’ organization. He earned Pro Bowl honors four times, was named NFC Defensive Player of the Year (Kansas City Committee of 101) in 1980, and was named NFL Defensive Back of the Year by Football Digest in 1984.
He ended his NFL career as the Ram’s all-time leader in interception return yardage with 671 yards on 37 interceptions. He played in Super Bowl XIV against the Steelers after the 1979 season.
His collegiate days he was a defensive back his first two seasons with the Kansas Jayhawks and switched to quarterback as a junior. Cromwell set several records as a wishbone quarterback rushing for 1,124 yards in 1975 earning Big Eight Offensive Player of the Year accolades as well as All-America honors. He set an NCAA single-game rushing record for a quarterback with 294 yards against Oregon State in 1975. He helped the Jayhawks snap a 28-game winning streak of the Oklahoma Sooners engineering a 23-3 upset of the Sooners.
Cromwell faced the Aggies in 1974 with the Jayhawks winning 28-10 in Lawrence.
In addition to his exploits on the gridiron, Cromwell distinguished himself on the track earning All-America honors in 1975. He set KU standards in the 400-meter hurdles, the 600-yard dash and decathlon.
Inducted into the Kansas Sports Hall of Fame in 1996, Cromwell played at Logan High School as a freshman helping the basketball team win a state championship. When his family moved to Ransom, Cromwell earned the nickname the “Ransom Rambler” as he was a standout in football, basketball and track. He was a national AAU junior champion in the decathlon, a three-time state champion in track and earned consensus All-State honors in football and basketball. The Wichita Eagle named him the state’s top high school player of the 1970’s.
Cromwell and his wife, Mary, have two children, Lance and Jennifer.
2008-present Texas A&M (offensive coordinator)
1999-2007 Seattle Seahawks (wide receivers)
1998 Green Bay Packers (wide receivers)
1992-97 Green Bay Packers (special teams)
1991 Los Angles Rams (defense/special teams assistant)