Chris Jones is no longer on the Cleveland Browns coaching staff, a year after leaving the CFL and a dual head coach/general manager role with the Saskatchewan Roughriders.
Jones joined the Browns last January as a senior defensive specialist under rookie head coach Freddie Kitchens. But after Kitchens was fired after only one season, the defensive group has undergone a major shakeup.
New Cleveland head coach Kevin Stefanski made Joe Woods his defensive coordinator, ousting Steve Wilks from that role – which is who Jones worked for. Stefanski and Woods have brought in their own position coaches, leaving Jones as an odd man out.
With Jones under contract for another year in Cleveland (through the 2020 season), and the Browns’ emphasis on the front office and analytics, I’d expect him to be working for the organization in some capacity.
A return for Jones to the Canada for the upcoming year is highly unlikely. CFL staffs league-wide are now filled, and with a cap in place to limit spending on football operations personnel, there is little money left for most franchises to bring Jones in for the upcoming season.
Jones was one of the CFL’s most successful coaches, winning Grey Cups in Montreal, Calgary and Toronto as an assistant coach, and then another title as the head coach in Edmonton. He left Edmonton after the 2015 championship to take a promotion with Saskatchewan, where he was general manager and head coach for three seasons prior to accepting the Cleveland job.
Stefanski officially announced his staff on Wednesday, and Jones was not listed. Jones was removed from the coaching staff section of the Browns team website a number of days ago.