AFC North Notes: Bengals, Browns, Ravens


  • According to ESPN’s Ben Baby, Bengals secondary coach Daronte Jones is no longer on the staff. Jones’ contract expired following the 2019 season. 


With the hire of Kevin Stefanski as Cleveland’s next head coach, Browns owner Jimmy Haslam hopes he’s solved the divisiveness that’s been at the heart of the team’s problems the past few years. Stefanski, consultant Paul DePodesta and top GM candidate Andrew Berry would all be unified in their vision for the Browns, and their success or failure will be determined by their ability to execute it, not by any political infighting.

In contrast, Yahoo Sports’ Charles Robinson details how shortly after the Browns hired John Dorsey as general manager, he was approached by HC Hue Jackson about minimizing or forcing out DePodesta since he didn’t share their vision of how to build a team. However, Haslam disagreed and told everyone they had to find a way work together. That, of course, didn’t work out. 

“Jimmy has seen enough to know it hasn’t worked for him doing it the other way,” an anonymous Browns source said. “John and Paul didn’t see eye-to-eye on things, but the bigger problem is they didn’t truly believe in each other. I think that’s what Jimmy is looking for — getting everyone on the same page [in the fundamentals], but also having confidence in each other as individuals to execute.”

  • According to Steve Doerschuk of the Canton Repository, the Browns ultimately decided on Stefanski over Patriots OC Josh McDaniels because of Stefanski’s willingness to work with parts of the organization Cleveland wanted to maintain going forward. 
  • Stefanski was on board with items like meeting with Haslam on Monday’s following games and having an analytics person on the headset during game days. 
  • Doerschuk says McDaniels and the Browns decided they weren’t a great fit because McDaniels wanted to make sweeping changes in some areas the Browns wanted to maintain going forward. 
  • Radio analyst Dustin Fox says to keep an eye on Colts secondary coach Jonathan Gannon, 49ers defensive passing game coordinator Joe Woods, Bills DB coach John Butler and Eagles defensive assistant Matt Burke for Cleveland’s defensive coordinator job. 


  • According to ESPN’s Jamison Hensley, the Ravens’ potential cap cuts in 2020 include S Tony Jefferson ($7 million cap savings), CB Brandon Carr ($6 million) and OL James Hurst ($2.75 million).
  • The Ravens would also pick up $7 million in cap space if G Marshal Yanda ends up retiring. 
  • Carr said he would like to return in 2020 but it’s up to the team in the end: “It’s been an amazing three years. We’ll see what happens after this.” (Jeff Zrebiec)
  • Ravens LB Matt Judon, who was Baltimore’s top pass rusher in 2019, is set to hit free agency this offseason and isn’t sure if he’ll be back: “I don’t know, man, really, honestly. I love it in Baltimore. They trusted in me starting for the last three years … I’m forever grateful to them. But ultimately, that’s a decision that comes from them and me. We have to sit down and talk about things.” (Hensley)
  • Ravens TE Mark Andrews revealed he dealt with a high ankle sprain during the playoff game but he still plans to play in the Pro Bowl in two weeks. (Zrebiec)
  • Ravens C Matt Skura said he hopes to be back by training camp but there’s no timetable for his recovery, as he tore his ACL, PCL, MCL and dislocated his kneecap. (Hensley)

Looking for the latest NFL Insider News & Rumors?

Be sure to follow NFL Trade Rumors on TWITTER and FACEBOOK for breaking NFL News and Rumors for all 32 teams!

Leave a Reply