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Sources: Atlanta Falcons, Arthur Smith hiring special teams assistant away from UNC

Smith is entering his second season atop the Falcons' helm

The Atlanta Falcons and second-year coach Arthur Smith are bolstering their special teams coaching staff, sources tell FootballScoop.

Smith is hiring Steven King away from the University of North Carolina to help with the Falcons’ special teams units. Per sources with direct knowledge, King is expected to serve as Atlanta’s assistant special teams coach/coordinator.

King, who starred in college as a running back at the University of Buffalo, coached at Bucknell, Wagner College and the University of Nevada, prior to his time in Chapel Hill, N.C., on Mack Brown’s Tar Heels’ staff.

In Atlanta, King will assist Falcons’ special teams coordinator Marquice Williams in all aspects of special teams preparation – from practice to game planning and implementation.

King was a 2017 in the NFL's Bill Walsh Diversity Fellowship with the then-Oakland Raiders, where King worked directly with ... the franchise's special teams units. 

King’s departure from UNC likewise leaves the Tar Heels seeking a new special teams quality control assistant coach to aid the program.

Earlier this offseason, veteran coach Larry Porter – a former University of Memphis head coach widely recognized as one of the top running backs and teams coaches in college football – was promoted by Brown to fill the Tar Heels’ role of special teams coordinator, in addition to Porter’s work with the UNC running backs.

It was Porter’s work at SEC powerhouse LSU as the Tigers’ special teams coordinator from 2005-09 that helped set the foundation for Porter to land his first head coaching job at the University of Memphis.