AFC North Notes: Browns, Bengals, McCarron

Let’s take a quick spin around the AFC North:

  • Hue Jackson is interested in adding former Bengals offensive coordinator Ken Zampese to the Browns’ coaching staff, according to Alex Marvez of the Sporting News (Twitter link). Jackson and Zampese overlapped for a number of years on the Cincinnati staff, so there is clearly a familiarity between the two coaches. Zampese, the Bengals’ quarterbacks coach from 2003-16, lasted only two touchdown-less games as the club’s offensive play-caller in 2017. Cleveland, which didn’t employ an offensive coordinator last year, wants to interview Texans quarterbacks coach Sean Ryan for its OC vacancy.
  • Defensive coordinator Paul Guenther may not be the only assistant coach to leave the Bengals this offseason, as Albert Breer of reports (Twitter link) a number of Cincinnati staffers are on expiring contracts. Head coach Marvin Lewis agreed to an extension through 2019 earlier today, but that doesn’t mean all of his assistants will return. Given the lack of success in the Queen City over the past two years, some staff overhaul is to be expected.
  • Bengals quarterback A.J. McCarron‘s free agent status grievance hearing will be settled on February 15, tweets Paul Dehner Jr. of the Cincinnati Enquirer. McCarron will argue that he should be an unrestricted free agent in March, while Cincinnati will contend that McCaron is a restricted free agent given that he was on the non-football injury list for most of his rookie campaign in 2014. The Bengals, of course, nearly traded McCarron to the Browns for second and third-round picks earlier this season.
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