Hue Jackson is set to become the ninth coach of the Cleveland Browns since the franchise rejoined the NFL before the 1999 season. ESPN Stats & Info looks at his background and how it fits with the Browns.
Jackson goes to the Browns after two seasons as the Cincinnati Bengals’ offensive coordinator. Bengals quarterback Andy Dalton just posted the best performance of his five-year career before his thumb injury ended his season. He had career bests in Total QBR (73.1), yards per attempt (8.42), touchdown-to-interception ratio (3.57) and completion percentage (66.1 percent).
Dalton has been the Bengals’ starting quarterback since his 2011 debut, prior to his injury. The Browns, in contrast, have used 24 starting quarterbacks since they rejoined the NFL in 1999, the most of any team.
Jackson oversaw a Bengals unit that ranked in the top 10 in yards per play and could score touchdowns inside the red zone and in goal-to-go situations.
Those are stark differences compared with the Browns, who ranked in the bottom five in the NFL in those categories during the past two seasons.
Jackson will be the fourth coach the Browns have hired who comes from primarily an offensive background (not including interim coach Terry Robiskie). The team has had more success with its four defense-oriented coaches: a .359 winning percentage (compared with .225 for offensive-oriented coaches), four seven-win seasons (to zero) and one playoff appearance (to zero).
Jackson was 8-8 in his only season as the Raiders' head coach, in 2011. He was the first since Jon Gruden (1998-2001) to not have a losing season as the Raiders' coach, and matches the best the team has posted since it went to the Super Bowl after the 2002 season.
Of the Browns’ nine coaches (including Robiskie), he is the third to have NFL head coaching experience. He is only the second to have coached at least an entire 16-game season, joining Eric Mangini (who had coached the Jets for three seasons before going to the Browns).
Prior to becoming the Bengals’ offensive coordinator in 2014, Jackson made a mark as a positions coach. He was the wide receivers coach for three seasons of Chad Johnson’s career, and in that span Johnson averaged 93 receptions, 1,358 yards and 8.3 touchdowns per season. Johnson led the NFL in receiving yards (4,075) in that three-season stretch.