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Stump Mitchell
Running Backs
Experience:
13

Biography

A standout running back and return specialist for nine seasons with the Cardinals (1981-89), Lyvonia “Stump” Mitchell enters his second season as Arizona’s running backs coach and 13th overall as an NFL assistant after being hired on 2/5/13.

A standout running back and return specialist for nine seasons with the Cardinals (1981-89), Lyvonia “Stump” Mitchell enters his second season as Arizona’s running backs coach and 13th overall as an NFL assistant after being hired on 2/5/13.

In 2013, Mitchell helped coach a group of Cardinals running backs that featured rookie Andre Ellington, who totaled 1,023 scrimmage yards (652 rushing, 371 receiving), becoming just the fifth rookie in team history to surpass 1,000 yards from scrimmage. His 5.53-yard rushing average led all NFL players with a minimum of 100 rushing attempts and was the highest average for any rookie in team history and the highest for a Cardinals running back since John David Crow (5.85) in 1960. Combined with veteran Rashard Mendenhall (687 yards and eight TDs), the 2013 season marked the first time since 1988 that the Cardinal had two players with 600+ rushing yards in a season.

Mitchell joined the Cardinals last year after working as the head coach at Southern from 2010-12, where he was re-assigned within the program following a 0-2 start to the ’12 season. Prior to his tenure at Southern, Mitchell spent two seasons as the running backs coach for the Washington Redskins (2008-09). During his first season with the Redskins, he oversaw the NFL’s eighth-ranked rushing attack, and Clinton Portis, who was selected to the Pro Bowl that season, had 1,487 yards, which at the time was the second-highest single season total in franchise history. He also tutored FB Mike Sellers, who joined Portis in the Pro Bowl in 2008.

He began his NFL coaching career in 1999 and served nine years as the running backs coach for the Seahawks under head coach Mike Holmgren. Mitchell coached a 1,000-yard rusher in each of his first seven seasons with Seattle (Ricky Watters and Shaun Alexander). Under his tutelage, Alexander was a three-time Pro Bowler and was named 2005 NFL MVP after leading the NFL with a franchise-record 1,880 rushing yards and setting a then-NFL record with 28 TDs (NFL-record 27 rushing TDs, 1 receiving TD). In 2004, Alexander led the NFC with 1,696 rushing yards and 20 TDs. During the 2003 season, Alexander made his first career Pro Bowl after rushing for 1,435 yards, and in 2002, he had 16 rushing TDs. Alexander’s backfield teammate, fullback Mack Strong, was also voted to the Pro Bowl in 2005 and 2006 under Mitchell’s guidance.

Mitchell joined the Seahawks following three years as head coach of Morgan State University (1996-98). He originally joined the MSU staff in 1995 as offensive coordinator before being promoted the following year. Under Mitchell's tutelage, the Bears boasted a rushing attack that averaged 148.9 yards per game in 1997.

A ninth-round selection (226th overall) by the Cardinals in the 1981 NFL Draft, Mitchell spent his entire nine-year NFL career with the Cardinals. He currently holds the franchise record with 11,988 all-purpose yards and ranks second all-time in rushing yards (4,649), punt return yards (1,377) and kickoff return yards (4,007), while also adding 1,955 career receiving yards. Mitchell’s 42 career TDs are tied for the 10th best total in team annals. Throughout his career, Mitchell posted 14 100-yard rushing games and finished with a 4.7-yard rushing average, which ranks as the second-highest career mark in team history. He posted a 5.6-yard rushing average in 1981 (31 for 175), earning All-Rookie honors from Pro Football Weekly, who also awarded him All-NFC honors as a kickoff returner in 1984.

In addition to his success on the field, Mitchell was also honored with the Chuck Drulis Award in 1982 and the Byron “Whizzer” White Humanitarian Award in 1984 for his work in the community.

Mitchell’s coaching career began in the spring of 1991 when he served as running backs coach for the San Antonio Rough Riders of the World League of American Football (WLAF). He then held the head coaching position at Casa Grande (AZ) High School (1991-94), where he led the team to the state playoffs in his second year.

Photos

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    CB Patrick Peterson celebrates a tackle in 2012
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    WR Andre Roberts catches a touchdown pass in 2013
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    49ers WR Michael Crabtree celebrates a touchdown in 2012
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    WR Ted Ginn with the 49ers in 2011
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    S Adrian Wilson hits 49ers RB Brian Westbrook in 2011

Recent Articles

Recent Videos

  • Zoom - Stump Mitchell comes full circle with Cards

    Posted Nov 16, 2013

    Zoom into the story of Cardinals legend Stump Mitchell who has returned to the team that drafted him in 1981. Mitchell currently serves as RB's coach for the Cardinals.

  • Stump Mitchell Highlights

    Posted Apr 16, 2013

    Former Cardinals great Stump Mitchell returns to the team to coach running backs under new head coach Bruce Arians. Check out some highlights from his playing days.