With the Cleveland Browns surprisingly letting go of running backs coach Stump Mitchell on Wednesday, the team has to fill this position and find a new offensive coordinator.
It was reported earlier this week that Cleveland interviewed former Carolina Panthers assistant head coach/running backs coach Duce Staley for their running backs coach opening. However, the Browns aren’t the only team looking at the former NFL running back.
Browns Rumors: Cleveland, New York Both Interested in Duce Staley
Mary Kay Cabot of Cleveland.com reported Saturday that the Browns and the New York Jets plan to make an offer to the 48-year-old Staley. Cleveland would love to bring Staley aboard as they try to build off this season’s success.
The Browns were ranked 12th in rushing offense (118.6 yards per game) despite not having star running back Nick Chubb for most of the season. Kareem Hunt, who joined Cleveland in September after Chubb went down with a season-ending injury, had nine rushing touchdowns (career high) and 411 rushing yards.
Meanwhile, second-year running back Jerome Ford showed he could be effective on the ground and out of the backfield as a pass catcher. Ford recorded 1,132 scrimmage yards and nine total touchdowns (four rushing).
Staley spent this season with the Carolina Panthers after being with the Detroit Lions the prior two years as their assistant head coach/running backs coach. However, Staley didn’t last the entire season with Carolina as the veteran running back, QB coach Josh McCown and head coach Frank Reich were dismissed in November.
When Staley was in Detroit, he helped veteran running back Jamaal Willams have a career year in 2022 (1,066 yards and 17 touchdowns). The former NFL running back would be an excellent addition to the Browns’ coaching staff as he’ll work with one of the best running backs in the league while continuing to help develop Ford.
Nevertheless, it will be interesting to see which route Staley goes, as the Browns’ running game looks much more promising than the Jets, even though they have a budding star in Breece Hall.
More Browns news and analysis: