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#pounditMonday, February 6, 2023

Report: ‘Little trust’ exists between Browns coaches, personnel people

The Cleveland Browns have been surprisingly competitive with their rookie starting quarterback through the first three games of the season, but they are still very much the Cleveland Browns behind closed doors.

Jason La Canfora of CBS Sports reports that there is “little trust” currently between the Browns’ coaching staff and their player personnel department. On Monday, head coach Hue Jackson was asked if he believes the team is built to win in the short- and long-term. He said that question would be better answered by executive vice president of football operations Sashi Brown.

“I think this team can (win),” he said. “I think we have to do some things better and work a little bit harder and make sure that we do some of the detail things right, but that question that you just asked, I think that is something you have to talk to Sashi about and the executive team.”

Remarks like those don’t exactly create the impression that the people calling the plays and the people constructing the roster are on the same page. According to La Canfora, Browns owner Jimmy Haslam held a conference call after Jackson made the comments.

Haslam held a conference call with his football operations staff in the aftermath of those comments, sources said, and while his remarks intended to instill confidence in them and allay fears, team sources noted that the fact he felt compelled to make such a call so soon in the season, at a time when there is no denying some of the rifts that exist, did not go unnoticed. Given the history of churn in Cleveland, some viewed the situation more as a “kiss of death,” team sources said.

While some team sources said Haslam has seemed to be in denial about the dire state of relations between coaches and the front office in his organization this season, with losses already mounting and given his need to hold a conference call allaying some fears so soon in the schedule, there could be more tumult on the horizon in Cleveland. Haslam has been very loyal to Brown through his changing roles and promotions, but the viability of the Jackson/Brown regime is waning by the week.

As usual, the Browns have a lot of problems. While you can’t expect much from a team that is starting a rookie quarterback, this isn’t the first indication we have seen that Jackson is growing more frustrated by the day.

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