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News » Browns deny that Ryan wanted out

Browns deny that Ryan wanted out

Browns deny that Ryan wanted out

Dana Point, Calif. - A story making the rounds here - and in Cleveland - is that shortly after the Browns hired Rob Ryan as defensive coordinator, he changed his mind and asked out of his contract so he could join his brother, Rex Ryan, the new head coach of the New York Jets.

The Browns deny it.

"That is so farfetched," Browns coach Eric Mangini said, shaking his head.

"I can tell you I interviewed Rob and after that point I've seen him since, and at no point did his contract come up," Browns President Mike Keenan added.

On Tuesday, Rex Ryan said it was he who asked the Browns to let Rob out of his Cleveland deal.

"The reason I did it was because it would have been unique to have us together," Rex said. "It was kind of a joke. We had Eric on the phone and we laughed about it.

"Did we expect Eric to do it? No. He and Rob are real close. My brother certainly didn't ask out of his contract."

The Ryan brothers are sons of former Chicago Bears defensive guru Buddy Ryan. They both entered the NFL together on their father's coaching staff when he was named coach of the Arizona Cardinals in 1994. The Ryans worked side-by-side for two seasons before Buddy Ryan was fired after the '95 season.

"We would like to work together again some day," Rex Ryan said.

Cha-ching: It was quite an eventful season in 2008 for Browns cornerback Brandon McDonald - and he cashed in handsomely.

McDonald earned $329,803 in the NFL's complicated performance-based bonus system, which rewards players for playing time based upon their base salary. McDonald's bonus comes from a fund jointly created by the league and players association. His bonus was fifth highest among all players in 2008.

McDonald's bonus was nearly equal to his 2008 base salary of $370,000, the NFL minimum for a second-year player last season.

McDonald started 15 of 16 games at cornerback last season. During a bad slump in pivotal home losses to Baltimore and Denver in the span of five days, McDonald was benched for the opening play against Buffalo. He returned after the first defensive series and recorded one of his team-high five interceptions.

After the season, the Cleveland chapter of the Pro Football Writers of America honored McDonald with the "Dino Lucarelli Good Guy Award" for being a standup guy during his trials and tribulations.

Rule changes: NFL owners approved four rule changes Tuesday to improve player safety. They eliminated the bunch formation on onside kickoff formations; eliminated the blocking wedge of more than two players on kickoff returns; eliminated the blindside helmet-to-helmet block on a defensive player by an offensive player; and eliminated all contact to the head of a defenseless receiver in the air.

To reach this Plain Dealer reporter: tgrossi@plaind.com, 216-999-4670

Author:Fox Sports
Author's Website:http://www.foxsports.com
Added: March 27, 2009

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Ryan Pontbriand Name: Ryan Pontbriand
Position: C
Age: 28
Experience: 6 years
College: Rice
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