Jim Tomsula

James Andrew Tomsula (born April 14, 1968)[1][2] is an American football coach. Serving as a defensive coach throughout his career, Tomsula has also been the head coach for the Rhein Fire of NFL Europe and the San Francisco 49ers of the NFL. Tomsula was born and raised in the Pittsburgh suburb of Homestead. Attending Catawba College, he played defensive end from 1987–1990, after transferring from Middle Tennessee State University after the 1986 season. At Catawba College, Tomsula made 109 tackles in two seasons.[3]

Jim Tomsula
refer to caption
Tomsula with the Washington Redskins in 2017
Personal information
Born: (1968-04-14) April 14, 1968 (age 52)
Homestead, Pennsylvania
Career information
High school:Munhall (PA) Steel Valley
Career history
As coach:
Career highlights and awards
Head coaching record
Regular season:6–11 (.353)
Coaching stats at PFR

Coaching careerEdit

Catawba CollegeEdit

Tomsula began his coaching career as a strength and conditioning coach at Catawba College in 1989. After serving as an assistant coach at Charleston Southern under Defensive Coordinator Fred Hamilton from 1992 to 1995, he returned to Catawba College where he was a member of the coaching staff until 2005 and helped lead the Catawba Indians to four South Atlantic Conference Championships. Notably, Tomsula was inducted into the Catawba College Sports Hall of Fame 2015.[4]

NFL EuropeEdit

Tomsula was an assistant for several years in NFL Europe. He was the defensive line coach for the England Monarchs in 1998 and for the Scottish Claymores from 1999 to 2003. In 2004, he became the defensive coordinator for the Berlin Thunder, a position he held for the 2004 and 2005 seasons. Tomsula became the head coach of the Rhein Fire for the 2006 season. The Fire would finish the season with a 6-4 record, but did not qualify for the playoffs.

San Francisco 49ersEdit

Assistant coachEdit

The 49ers hired Tomsula to serve as their defensive line coach during the 2007 season and he remained in that role through the 2014 season.[5] During the 2010 season, Tomsula was named interim head coach for the Week 17 game versus the Arizona Cardinals, after head coach Mike Singletary was fired with one game remaining in the season.[6] He won his first game as 49ers head coach, 38–7 over the Arizona Cardinals. For the 2011 season, incoming new head coach Jim Harbaugh retained Tomsula in his previous position as defensive line coach where he would remain through all four seasons of the Harbaugh era.

Head coachEdit

On January 14, 2015, Tomsula became the 49ers' head coach,[7] succeeding Jim Harbaugh who had been forced out by 49ers CEO Jed York.[8]

Tomsula employed new coaching practices, which included giving his players breaks to check social media during meetings, shorter, easier practices,[9] and more days off.[10] The result was one of the worst offenses in team history. Scoring only 238 points,[11] the 49ers would struggle to a 5–11 season, with Colin Kaepernick ending the season on injured reserve after being benched. The 49ers would ultimately be eliminated from postseason contention in Week 14 of the 2015 regular season.

Tomsula was fired just a few hours after the 49ers season finale against the St. Louis Rams, which the 49ers won 19–16 in overtime.[12] On January 4, 2016, York confirmed that the 49ers would pay Tomsula $14 million for his one season as head coach.

Washington RedskinsEdit

On January 23, 2017, Tomsula was hired as defensive line coach for the Washington Redskins.[13]

Dallas CowboysEdit

On January 8, 2020, Tomsula was hired as the defensive line coach for the Dallas Cowboys.[14] On January 8, 2021, Tomsula was fired along with defensive coordinator Mike Nolan.

Head coaching recordEdit

NFL EuropeEdit

Team Year Regular season Postseason
Won Lost Ties Win % Finish Won Lost Win % Result
RF 2006 6 4 0 .600


Team Year Regular season Postseason
Won Lost Ties Win % Finish Won Lost Win % Result
SF* 2010 1 0 0 1.000 3rd in NFC West
SF 2015 5 11 0 .316 4th in NFC West
Total 6 11 0 .353

*Interim head coach

Personal lifeEdit

Tomsula's grandfather, James J. Tomsula (1916–2012), was a son of immigrants from Hungary and served in the United States Navy during World War II.[15][16] He is a devout Roman Catholic, but does not push his views on others, stating that "God takes care of everything...I don't give anyone religion lessons."[17]

Tomsula has worked as a medical equipment sales representative, newspaper delivery man, firefighter, night janitor, firewood cutter, department store floor cleaner, food sales representative, and doormat salesman.[18]


  1. ^ "Jim Tomsula Record, Statistics, and Category Ranks - Pro-Football-Reference.com". Pro-Football-Reference.com.
  2. ^ Gutierrez, Paul (January 14, 2015). "Who exactly is Jim Tomsula?". ESPN. Retrieved August 25, 2019.
  3. ^ "Catawba Announces Sports Hall of Fame Class for 2015 | GoCatawbaIndians.com". gocatawbaindians.com. Retrieved October 3, 2017.
  4. ^ "Catawba Announces Sports Hall of Fame Class for 2015 | GoCatawbaIndians.com". gocatawbaindians.com. Retrieved October 3, 2017.
  5. ^ Wire, SI. "The 49ers have hired defensive line coach Jim Tomsula as their new head coach".
  6. ^ "He has already served as the head coach of the 49ers". USA Today.
  7. ^ Fortyniners LakersSpin (January 15, 2015), Jim Tomsula Introductory Press Conference, retrieved July 22, 2016
  8. ^ Brady, James (February 13, 2015). "Harbaugh says he didn't leave 49ers by choice". Retrieved September 30, 2016.
  9. ^ "Is Jim Tomsula worse than the worst head coach of all time? – Inside the 49ers". November 24, 2015. Retrieved July 11, 2016.
  10. ^ Parziale, James. "San Francisco 49ers and coach Jim Tomsula cater to millennials, allow players to take phone breaks". FOX Sports. Retrieved May 19, 2016.
  11. ^ "San Francisco 49ers Team Encyclopedia | Pro-Football-Reference.com". Pro-Football-Reference.com. Retrieved May 19, 2016.
  12. ^ "San Francisco 49ers fire coach Jim Tomsula". NFL.com.
  13. ^ Washington Redskins hire Jim Tomsula as defensive line coach. UPI, January 23, 2017. Retrieved January 29, 2017
  14. ^ Neel, Zachary. "Dallas Cowboys hire former Redskins defensive line coach Jim Tomsula". Redskins Wire. USA Today. Retrieved February 25, 2020.
  15. ^ "James J. Tomsula obituary". Pittsburgh Post-Gazette. February 25, 2012.
  16. ^ "James Tomsula". United States Census, 1930.
  17. ^ Branch, Eric (October 24, 2013). "49ers coach Tomsula returns to roots". The San Francisco Chronicle.
  18. ^ Kalaf, Samer. "Jim Tomsula Should Be Your Favorite Coach". Deadspin. Retrieved August 26, 2019.

External linksEdit