Browns hire former Cardinals QB Ryan Lindley as running backs coach

Oct 31, 2018, 1:01 PM | Updated: Nov 1, 2018, 2:00 pm

Arizona Cardinals' Ryan Lindley (14) looks to pass under pressure from Carolina Panthers' Charles J...

Arizona Cardinals' Ryan Lindley (14) looks to pass under pressure from Carolina Panthers' Charles Johnson (95) in the first half of an NFL wild card playoff football game in Charlotte, N.C., Saturday, Jan. 3, 2015. (AP Photo/Mike McCarn)

(AP Photo/Mike McCarn)

After firing their head coach and offensive coordinator, the Cleveland Browns have decided to acquire a former Arizona Cardinal to take over a vacant position.

It was announced that retired quarterback Ryan Lindley will assume the role of running backs coach for Cleveland after Freddie Kitchens, another descendant of the Cardinals’ coaching tree, was promoted to offensive coordinator.

Lindley and Kitchens have been linked since their days in Arizona, where Kitchens served as the quarterbacks coach between 2012 and 2016. Lindley served as one of four quarterbacks to start for Arizona in the 2012-13 season but was eventually cut in favor of other options. He returned to the team in 2014 after quarterback Carson Palmer suffered a season-ending injury.

During his playing career, Lindley appeared in 10 regular season games including nine as a Cardinal and one as a Colt. His most notable start came in the 2015 postseason when he started in place of quarterback Drew Stanton, who is also currently a backup for Cleveland. Lindley connected on 16-of-28 passes for 81 yards and a touchdown in the 27-16 Wild Card loss to Carolina.

This is a new challenge for Lindley, who has spent most of his young coaching career working with quarterbacks. After his release from the Indianapolis Colts in 2015, Lindley began to train quarterback prospects for the NFL Combine.

During his time training prospects, Lindley worked closely with the likes of Jared Goff, Carson Wentz and Mitch Trubisky.

Lindley served as a graduate assistant with the San Diego State coaching staff during the 2017 season. Now, he’ll rejoin Kitchens for his first coaching position for a professional team. He’ll be tasked with training and developing the No. 35 pick in the 2018 NFL Draft, running back Nick Chubb.

Kitchens replaced OC Todd Haley, who served as offensive coordinator for the Cardinals during their 2009 Super Bowl appearance. Haley departed for a position in Kansas City following the Super Bowl, replacing current Arizona State head coach Herm Edwards as the Chiefs’ head coach.

Before joining the Browns in Jan. 2018, Haley spent six years running the offense of his hometown Pittsburgh Steelers.

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