Seahawks reportedly poach 49ers coaching staff to hire new defensive coordinator

After just one week as a 49ers assistant coach, it looks like Ken Norton Jr. is already on his way out of San Francisco.  

According to KING-TV in Seattle, Norton and the Seahawks have agreed to terms on a three-year deal that will make him Pete Carroll's new defensive coordinator. 

San Francisco fans might be slightly surprised to hear this news since Norton was just hired on January 8 to serve as an assistant head coach for the team. Norton was slated to coach the linebackers in San Francisco before the job in Seattle came along. According to, Norton was released from his deal with the 49ers because he had an out clause in his contract that allowed him to take the Seahawks' defensive coordinator position if it came open. 

San Francisco coach Kyle Shanahan confirmed to NBC Bay Area that Norton would be leaving San Francisco after just seven days with the team. 

"Last week, Ken was presented with an opportunity to once again coordinate a defense," Shanahan said. "Because of how we feel about Ken as a coach, we understand and respect his desire to pursue the position."

The hiring of Norton in Seattle means that the Seahawks' current defensive coordinator, Kris Richard, will likely be looking for a new job in the next few days. The Seahawks had been planning to move on from Richard this offseason, but it appears they wanted to wait until they had someone in place before they let him go. 

The hiring of Norton means he'll be returning to the city where he coached for five seasons. Norton won a Super Bowl during his first stint with the Seahawks when he served as linebackers coach from 2010 to 2014. 

Norton left Seattle in 2015 to become the Raiders' defensive coordinator, but didn't even last three seasons. Norton was fired in November after the Raiders ranked 26th overall in total defense through the team's first 11 games. 

Before joining the coaching ranks, Norton was a three-time Super Bowl winner during his 13-year career where he played in both Dallas (1988-93) and San Francisco (1994-2000). 

Besides Norton, the Seahawks apparently filled one other coaching void on Monday. According to, Mike Solari has been hired as Seattle's offensive line coach. The spot became open last week after Seattle fired Tom Cable. Solari, who spent the past two seasons with the Giants, will be in his second stint with the Seahawks: He also served as offensive line coach in 2008 and 2009. 

CBS Sports Writer

John Breech has been at CBS Sports since July 2011 and currently spends most of his time writing about the NFL. He's believed to be one of only three people in the world who thinks that Andy Dalton will... Full Bio

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