Browns Hire Gregg Williams As DC

SUNDAY, 12:12pm: The Browns have made the hire official, and as Nate Ulrich of the Akron Beacon Journal tweets, Jackson will allow Williams to bring his own assistants. Therefore, there will be changes on the defensive staff, and Ulrich adds (via Twitter) that Jackson is “not done” evaluating the staff as a whole, so other changes could be on the way. Jackson will, however, retain play-calling duties, as Ulrich tweets.

SATURDAY, 08:22pm: Gregg Williams will replace Ray Horton as the Browns’ defensive coordinator, Jason La Canfora of CBSSports.com reports (on Twitter). The team recently extended an offer for the veteran DC to come in, and as a result, “wholesale changes” are coming to the Browns’ defense, per La Canfora.

The 58-year-old DC will transition from a Rams defense he helped elevate into one of the more formidable units in the game over the past three years to one that ranked as the No. 31 DVOA group during a horrendous Browns campaign.

Williams was reportedly open to staying in Los Angeles but understood that was unlikely after Jeff Fisher‘s departure. We heard earlier today Williams could bring some Rams assistants to northeast Ohio with him. He also might be bringing a new defense along. The Rams operated as a 4-3 defense during Williams’ years, and the Browns use a 3-4. Although, Cleveland isn’t exactly at the rebuilding stage where it couldn’t retool.

La Canfora confirms Williams plans to bring three or four coaches to with him to Cleveland, adding that Hue Jackson signed off on this change despite being close to Horton. The reporter adds Horton became unpopular on the personnel side of the organization.

Rebounding after the Bountygate scandal forced him off the sidelines for a year, Williams helped the Rams elevate into an upper-echelon defense this season despite one of the league’s worst offenses. The Browns boasted the league’s No. 27 defense in 2015 and 31st-ranked outfit this season, the latter coming after the organization made a change to go with a grass-roots rebuilding operation. That came after several recent rebuilds failed, but the Browns will have a proven DC around which to construct a stoppage corps in the near future.

This will be Williams’ seventh DC gig, with a three-year HC tenure with the Bills coming in between that lengthy run that dates back to running the Tennessee Oilers’ defense in 1997.

Photo courtesy of USA Today Sports Images.

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21 comments on “Browns Hire Gregg Williams As DC

  1. James Weaver

    Cleveland Browns: Myles Garrett, DE
    Go get him for new defensive coordinator
    Gregg Williams.

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  2. realfootballfan

    Just better make sure he brings Mike Waufle with him from LA. Guy’s a great defensive line coach.

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  3. GoTribe429

    I’m one happy fan. I didn’t think Horton’s D was productive during his FIRST tenure. We WILL see a positive result.

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    • realfootballfan

      I’m seriously wondering if they brought him back because they were already paying him, which doesn’t put a good light on the organization if so because I don’t recall Hue Jackson and Horton ever working together before. Seemed like he would have been trying to get one of the Bengal coaches to come with him or someone off of Zimmer’s staff. I remember thinking Horton? They’ve never professionally crossed paths and Horton has been mediocre to terrible everywhere since he left Arizona.

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    • sufferfortribe
      sufferfortribe

      I join you in the happy category. Heck, maybe even take it to the ecstatic level!

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      • CLEvsWORLD

        awesome some other browns fans that are actually excited about the direction we’re heading.

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  4. sufferfortribe
    sufferfortribe

    Oh, I hope I hope I hope they do switch to a 4-3 defense.

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  5. LGBT Raven Lover

    The Browns could hire Belichick, McCarthy, Reid, Tomlin, both Harbaughs, Coughlin, and Cowher and would still find a way to be terrible. When is the last time Gregg Williams had a top defense? Hue must be getting desperate. He knows he will be fired mid season next year.

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    • Birdman1182

      Pretty sure the rams last year were a top defense. He also made the saints defense very good…the same saints defense rob ryan took over and looked terrible.

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      • LGBT Raven Lover

        At one time he was viewed as a top DC. That was a while ago. But hey, I’m not a Browns fan at all so I hope they gave this guy a guaranteed 10 yr deal lol. I am not worried about him one bit. When this is his only option, it shows what other teams think of him.

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  6. Dice shooter

    This guy can coach defense. The Browns just got better!

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