Saints hire Rizzi as special teams coordinator

FILE PHOTO: Dec 2, 2018; Miami Gardens, FL, USA; Miami Dolphins associate head coach/special teams coordinator Darren Rizzi (orange hat) looks over at free safety Minkah Fitzpatrick (right) during the first half against the Buffalo Bills at Hard Rock Stadium. Mandatory Credit: Steve Mitchell-USA TODAY Sports

The New Orleans Saints have hired Darren Rizzi as special teams coordinator, head coach Sean Payton announced Monday.

Rizzi, 48, has 26 years of college and NFL coaching experience, most recently with the Miami Dolphins from 2009-18. He spent his final two years with the Dolphins as associate head coach/special teams coordinator.

Over his eight seasons as coordinator, the Dolphins were first in the NFL with 11 blocked punts and second with 22 total blocked kicks.

Immediately before joining the Dolphins, Rizzi was the head coach of his alma mater, Rhode Island, for one season. He also was the head coach of Division II New Haven for three seasons, from 1999 to 2001.