Forty-two year coaching veteran Mike Solari begins his 30th season in the NFL and his first as the Seahawks’ offensive line coach. A line coach for most of his career, Solari has also coached tight ends and special teams, and has been an offensive coordinator.
In Solari’s 19 seasons serving as an NFL team’s primary offensive line coach, his players combined for 25 Pro Bowl appearances and at least one of his players was selected to the Pro Bowl in 15 of those seasons.
Solari spent 2016-17 as the New York Giants’ offensive line coach. In 2016, his linemen allowed 22 sacks – five fewer than the Giants surrendered in 2015 – and the third-lowest total in the league after Oakland (18) and Pittsburgh (21).
Solari spent the 2015 season as the Green Bay Packers’ assistant offensive line coach. From 2010-14, Solari coached the San Francisco 49ers’ offensive line. During that period, he helped the 49ers rank fifth in the NFL in rushing (132.1 yards per game) and sixth in yards-per-carry (4.47). San Francisco finished among the NFL’s top five rushing teams in each of Solari’s final three seasons there.
During Solari’s tenure with the 49ers, which included three consecutive NFC Championship Game appearances (2011-13) and a berth in Super Bowl XLVII, at least one of his linemen was selected to the Pro Bowl in four of his five seasons. Tackle Joe Staley earned Pro Bowl recognition four times (2011-14), while guard Mike Iupati was voted to play in the game three times (2012-14). In 2014, Solari’s line helped the 49ers rank fourth in the NFL in rushing yards (136.0 yards a game), rushing average (4.63 yards a carry) and 10-yard runs (62).
In 2013, San Francisco ranked third in the NFL with 2,201 rushing yards, first in 20-yard runs (20) and fourth in rushing touchdowns (18). Staley was named second-team All-Pro by the Associated Press and was selected to his third straight Pro Bowl.
In 2012, San Francisco was one of just three teams to start the same five offensive linemen for every regular season game, and each of the five starters was selected to the Pro Bowl as either a participant or an alternate. The 49ers ranked fourth in the league in rushing yards (2,491), and Solari’s line earned the Madden Most Valuable Protectors Award.
Prior to joining the 49ers, Solari coached the offensive line for the Seattle Seahawks in 2008-09. Under Solari’s direction, tackle Walter Jones was named to the Pro Bowl in 2008, Jones’ 12th and final NFL season. Jones was inducted into the Pro Football Hall of Fame in 2014.
Solari was with the Kansas City Chiefs from 1997-2007, serving as the offensive line coach for his first nine seasons with the club (1997-2005) and as the offensive coordinator for the final two years (2006-07). He was one of just six assistant coaches in team history to record more than a decade of service with the franchise. In Solari’s nine seasons tutoring the offensive line, the Chiefs ranked first in the NFL over that span in rushing touchdowns (191), fourth in rushing yards (126.8 yards per game), third in scoring (25.0 points per game) fifth in total offense (356.1 yards per game) and sixth in sacks allowed (278).
Solari’s lines helped the Chiefs finish in the top five in the league in total offense in five consecutive seasons (2001-05), the only NFL club to accomplish that feat over that span, including No. 1 rankings in 2004 and 2005. At least one of Solari’s linemen was named to the Pro Bowl in all nine of his seasons tutoring the group in Kansas City, including a trio of Pro Bowlers in 2004-05 in guards Will Shields and Brian Waters and tackle Willie Roaf. The Chiefs became the first club to accomplish that feat since Dallas had three linemen selected to the Pro Bowl each season from 1992-95.
Solari did his first stint on the 49ers’ staff from 1992-96, when he served as the team’s tight ends/assistant offensive line coach. He was instrumental in the development of tight end Brent Jones, who was named to the Pro Bowl in four consecutive seasons (1992-95) and earned second-team All-Pro recognition in 1993-94. During Solari’s tenure, the 49ers played in three straight NFC Championship Games (1992-94), and defeated the San Diego Chargers in Super Bowl XXIX.
Solari coached on Gene Stallings’ staff at the University of Alabama from 1990-91, tutoring the offensive line and helping the Crimson Tide to an 11-1 record and a No. 5 ranking in the final AP poll in 1991. Solari also worked on Stallings’ staff with the Phoenix Cardinals in 1989, when he helped guide tackle Luis Sharpe to a Pro Bowl selection.
Solari began his NFL coaching career with the Dallas Cowboys in 1987, serving as assistant offensive line/special teams coach for two seasons.
Solari’s coaching career began in 1977 at Mission Bay (Calif.) High, followed by stints at Mira Costa Junior College (1978) and U.S. International (1979). He helped lead Boise State University to the NCAA Division I-AA Championship in 1980 and also coached on the collegiate level at the University of Cincinnati (1981-82), University of Kansas (1983-85) and University of Pittsburgh (1986) before entering the NFL.
As a player, Solari was a two-time letterman as an offensive lineman (1975-76) at San Diego State University, where he was a teammate of former Chiefs head coach Herm Edwards and current Bears head coach John Fox. Solari began his collegiate career at the College of San Mateo (1973-74).
Solari, 63, was born in Daly City, Calif. He and his wife, Patti, have three children, Tamara, Stephanie and Michael.