The Chicago Bears are bolstering their offensive coaching staff by reuniting offensive line coach Harry Hiestand with his former assistant at Notre Dame, Donovan Raiola. Raiola was Hiestand’s assistant offensive line coach with the Fighting Irish from 2015 to 2016, and he’ll serve in that same capacity this season with the Bears.
Last year Raiola was the offensive line coach at Aurora University, and in 2014 he assisted the o-line coach at the University of Hawaii.
As a player, he was originally an undrafted free agent of the St. Louis Rams in 2006 after an outstanding career at the University of Wisconsin. He only appeared in one NFL game, in 2010 with the Buccaneers, but he bounced around pro football until 2011.
After a couple years with the Rams he went to the Steelers, then back to the Rams, then on to the Seahawks, then to the Cardinals before signing with the Bears in the 2009 offseason. After the Bears waived him he moved on to Tampa Bay, then he signed with the Omaha Nighthawks, but then back with the Bucs, all in 2010. In 2011 he went back to the Nighthawks when he could have run into current Bears assistant special teams coach Brock Olivo who was their running backs coach at the time, and he finally ended his pro playing journey with the Redskins.
After his playing days he spent two years coaching high school football at his alma mater, Kamehameha Schools-Kapalama.
Donovan’s older brother, Dominic Railoa, played fourteen years with the Detroit Lions and is best known by Bears’ fans for doing this to Ego Furguson back in 2014.
What are your thoughts on Donovan Railoa joining Matt Nagy’s first coaching staff?