Lions' head coach Steve Mariucci put the finishing touches on his offensive coaching staff earlier this week, and the team made it official on Tuesday.
Mariucci's biggest move was saved for last, when he brought in former 49ers' player and assistant Tom Rathman as the team's running backs coach. Rathman served under Mariucci for six-years while in the Bay area, and found himself on the outside looking in after Dennis Erickson was named head coach in San Francisco.
The former 49ers' fullback tutored several successful running backs and fullbacks, including Garrison Hearst, Charlie Garner, and Kevan Barlow, among others. He won two Super Bowls as a player with the 49ers between 1986 and 1993, before spending his final season with the Oakland Raiders in 1994.
Rathman will work extensively with the tailbacks and fullbacks on the Lions' roster, and will help polish starters James Stewart and Cory Schlesinger. Incidentally, Rathman and Schlesinger both attended Nebraska.
Lions' assistant Bobby Williams, who was hired by Marty Mornhinweg shortly after losing the Michigan State head coaching position, will be retained as wide receivers coach. Williams was appointed as the running backs coach in January.
Williams will receive assistance with the receivers from Sherm Lewis, who will also be retained as offensive coordinator. Offensive line coach Carl Mauk will also be retained after his group allowed a league low 20 sacks in 2002, along with promoting a 1,000-yard season by James Stewart.
While his offensive staff is complete, Mariucci has yet to address his defensive staff, including coordinator Kurt Schottenheimer. Although Mariucci has publicly complimented Schottenheimer, he has yet to say he will retain the first-year assistant. Mariucci has said, however, that he will look for defensive assistants at the NFL combine which begins this week.