Jim McNally

Home 5 Class of 2008 5 Jim McNally

NFL Offensive Line Coaching Guru

Jim McNally played sandlot football in Kenmore, earning the nickname ‘Mouse’ for his size, speed and elusiveness. After graduating from Kenmore West High School and with no scholarship in hand, Jim went to the University of Buffalo and ‘walked on’ as a 5-8 guard. Many regarded him as too small and light to play at the collegiate level, but Jim, bulking up to 210 pounds and full of determination, soon found a starting position on both offense and defense at UB. Jim earned a bachelor’s degree at UB and became a graduate assistant with the freshman team. He went on to obtain his master’s degree in education and eventually worked his way up to an assistant coach position until UB dropped their football program.

After successful stints at Marshall, Boston College and Wake Forest, Jim was offered the offensive line coaching job with the Cincinnati Bengals, where over 15 years he tutored and mentored the line anchored by Pro Football Hall of Famer Anthony Munoz, who credits much of his success to McNally’s teachings.

After leaving the Bengals he coached the offensive line for the Carolina Panthers, helping the team reach the NFC championship game in only its second year of existence. Later he coached the New York Giants offensive line, helping them to the Super Bowl in 2000. In 2004, the call came to come to Buffalo where after four years Jim concluded his remarkable career coaching the Bills’ offensive line to new successes.

McNally retired from the NFL after the 2007 season and has returned to UB as a volunteer in the Development Office where he works on alumni events.

Described in USA Today as “perhaps the best offensive line coach in the game”, Jim was previously inducted into the UB Athletic Hall of Fame in 1982.