Redskins

Browns hire Ray Horton defensive coordinator

Browns hire Ray Horton defensive coordinator

BEREA, Ohio (AP) The Browns considered Ray Horton for their head coaching vacancy. They hired him to fill another one.

Horton, who spent the past two seasons as Arizona's defensive coordinator, was named to the same position with the Browns on Friday. The 52-year-old recently interviewed with Browns owner Jimmy Haslam and CEO Joe Banner before the team chose Rob Chudzinski as its sixth coach since 1999. Horton replaces Dick Jauron, who was not retained on Chudzinski's staff.

``We are truly excited that we were able to get someone of Ray's caliber as our defensive coordinator,'' Chudzinski said. ``He possesses a great deal of experience as a player, position coach and coordinator in the NFL and has been part of some of the top defenses in the league throughout his career. He is an extremely talented coach and I know that he will work very well with the young nucleus of players we have on defense.''

Under Horton last season, Arizona's defense ranked second in the NFL in interceptions and third-down efficiency. Horton, who was considered for Arizona's head coaching job before the team hired Bruce Arians, has 19 years of experience as a pro assistant.

Before he went to Arizona, Horton spent seven seasons with the Pittsburgh Steelers. He played 10 years as a defensive back in the league.

It's not yet known if Horton will switch Cleveland's base defense from a 4-3 to a 3-4 scheme.

Horton's hiring is the second major one in two days for Chudzinski's staff. On Thursday, fired San Diego coach Norv Turner was named the team's new offensive coordinator. Chudzinski coached the Chargers tight ends for two seasons under Turner.

``As we've said before, an important factor in hiring Rob was our confidence in him being able to put together a top-quality staff,'' Banner said. ``He has assembled an extremely impressive group of coaches, and that will be very beneficial as we develop our players.''

Before he went to Arizona, Horton spent seven seasons coaching the Steelers secondary. During his time with Pittsburgh, the Steelers ranked in the top 10 in total defense each season. Horton helped in the development of star safety Troy Polamalu, who selected to six consecutive Pro Bowls with Horton as his coach.

A second-round selection by Cincinnati in 1983, Horton appeared in 147 games - 99 starts - for the Bengals (1983-88) and Dallas Cowboys (1989-92). He had 19 career interceptions, 11 fumble recoveries, forced five fumbles and scored five defensive touchdowns. He played in one Super Bowl with Cincinnati and one for Dallas.

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Dwayne Haskins has secured the starting job, now he wants to secure more authority

Dwayne Haskins has secured the starting job, now he wants to secure more authority

The Redskins' starting quarterback job now officially belongs to Dwayne Haskins.

Next up? The rookie wants take more ownership of and have more confidence in the offense he's being asked to direct for the next seven games.

In his first midweek turn at the team's podium in Ashburn, Haskins reflected on how he felt more at ease as his first start in Buffalo progressed. That's a comfort level he hopes grows starting with this Sunday's matchup versus the Jets.

"The more reps I got, the more rhythm I got with my eyes and my feet and being able to look at guys in the huddle and tell an All-Pro Brandon Scherff what the play is and have some authority behind it meant a lot for me," Haskins told reporters on Wednesday. "I feel like I'll continue to get better at that."

One thing Haskins has spoken of often, even going back to training camp this past summer, is wanting to play the position more with his instincts as opposed to instincts-after-thinking. It sounds like that process has begun, and with each contest, those instincts will kick in more and more.

That authority Haskins wants to have, though, doesn't just come from on-field performance. It's about how he behaves each day leading up to Sunday and the commitment he displays while preparing.

Those were things that apparently weren't being taken care of early on this year, but he certainly seems more aware of them now, which is quite encouraging.

"Everyone is watching what you're doing, how you handle yourself, how you walk in the building and how you walk into a meeting," he said. "That's all very important for the guys who want you to lead them."

So, the question now becomes how all of these factors — a deeper understanding of the offense, a more mature approach, the security that comes from knowing he's the No. 1 signal caller — influence Haskins' production. Can he show enough flashes from now until the end of the season for the Redskins to believe they can truly build around him?

Terry McLaurin, who's seen what a locked in Haskins can do firsthand, gave a terrific comparison for what that version of the QB looks like. And if No. 7 can get to where No. 17 has witnessed him get to before, then this final stretch of 2019 will be very fun.

"I kind of describe it as an elite shooter," McLaurin explained. "Ray Allen, any type of elite scorer in the NBA you can think of being in a zone. It's like, 'Man, it doesn't matter who's in front of him, what he's seeing, it's just the ball's going in.' I see that a lot out of Dwayne when he gets going, when he's confident."

Haskins, meanwhile, was more straightforward when it came to describing what he wants to get out of this next month and a half.

"I know I can play at a high level," he said, "So, I've just got to do it."

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Redskins will send scout to Colin Kaepernick workout

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Redskins will send scout to Colin Kaepernick workout

The Redskins will send a team representative to Colin Kaepernick's private workout on Saturday in Atlanta. The NFL set up the workout and a Redskins spokesperson said that it's expected most if not all of the league's teams will send somebody to the workout.

Kaepernick famously hasn't played since 2016, and in that time his protests became national news. He's also reached a settlement with the NFL about his absence from the league.

Looking ahead, even though the Redskins will attend the workout, it seems highly unlikely Washington would sign Kaepernick. On Monday, Redskins interim head coach Bill Callahan installed rookie Dwayne Haskins as the team's starting quarterback for the rest of the season. At 1-8, It's arguably overdue for the Redskins to turn their offense over to the 15th overall pick, but now that it's finally happened, that leaves veterans Case Keenum and Colt McCoy as extra roster spots. 

Callahan said that the Redskins quarterback group does not need an addition. 

"Our situation is full at this juncture right now because of the two veteran quarterbacks we have along with Dwayne," the coach said Wednesday. "We have three on our roster where generally a lot of teams just carry two on their roster. We're really carrying one extra quarterback than most teams normally carry."

Of Kaepernick specifically, Callahan added, "We wish for the best for him."

Interestingly, the Redskins coaching staff has ties to Kaepernick. Washington offensive coordinator Kevin O'Connell was an offensive assistant in San Francisco in 2016, Kaepernick's NFL last season. Also, Jim Tomsula was 49ers head coach in 2015.

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