Jacksonville, Fla. — The Jacksonville Jaguars traded for Cleveland running back Carlos Hyde on Friday, adding a proven starter while Leonard Fournette progresses slowly from a strained right hamstring.
The Browns (2-3-1) will get a 2019 fifth-round draft pick from the Jaguars in exchange for Hyde, who has 382 yards rushing and five touchdowns in his first season in Cleveland. Hyde signed a three-year, $15.25 million contract in March.
The Jaguars (3-3) were willing to take on the financial commitment because leading rusher T.J. Yeldon will become a free agent at the end of this season. So will third-stringer Corey Grant, who was placed on injured reserve last week because of a foot injury. The Jaguars signed veteran Jamaal Charles to a one-year contract to replace Grant.
Fournette was ruled out for Sunday’s game against Houston. It will be the fifth game he’s missed this season because of the nagging injury.
Cleveland had seemed pleased with Hyde, but his departure clears the way for rookie Nick Chubb to be the team’s primary back. He’s averaging nearly 10 yards per carry.
Browns general manager John Dorsey continues to revamp the team’s roster and add picks. In addition to their own picks in the first six rounds, the Browns acquired a third-rounder from New England, Jacksonville’s fifth-rounder, another fifth-rounder from New England and a seventh-rounder from Jacksonville.
The NFL trading deadline is Oct. 30.
The Jaguars built their offense around Fournette, a bruising runner and the fourth overall pick in the 2017 draft. He tried to return after missing two games earlier this season but re-injured his hamstring and has been sidelined since. Yeldon, meanwhile, is dealing with foot and ankle injuries.
Making Jacksonville’s offense even more stagnant, the team is without its top two left tackles, its top two tight ends and its leading receiver from 2017.
The 28-year-old Hyde was off to an impressive start in Cleveland. But he was taking playing time away from Chubb, who scored on two long touchdown runs at Oakland on Sept. 30 and enters Sunday’s game averaging 10.8 yards on 16 carries. Also, running back Duke Johnson had gone from being a dual threat to mainly a receiver. He’s had just 19 carries this season.
Earlier this week, Browns coach Hue Jackson said it was vital to get Chubb more touches. Chubb had only three carries for 25 yards last week in a loss to the Los Angeles Chargers.
“We need to get him more chances,” Jackson said. “But I think sometimes the game changes, you get behind and you need Duke Johnson out there because that is what he does well — catch the ball and run it. I think that is what you were seeing yesterday. As these games get a little closer, they do not get too far away and we can get up whatever that is, we do need to give Nick Chubb more carries.”
Garrett rips officials
Browns defensive end Myles Garrett roughed up NFL officials.
The No. 1 overall pick unloaded on officials, criticizing them for several calls that have gone against Cleveland in recent weeks and swung momentum in their games.
“Do your job just like we need to do our job,” Garrett said. “If it’s holding, call holding. If it’s a false start, false start, whether it’s us or them.”
Garrett spoke out unafraid of any consequences from the league, which is sensitive about players criticizing its officiating crews.
“If I get fined, so be it,” he said. “Something needs to be said. If it keeps on going this way, this route, where it seems like we keep on getting the short stick.”
Garrett has issues with a number of calls, but he was particularly peeved about a play in the second quarter of last Sunday’s 38-14 loss to the Los Angeles Chargers.
With the Chargers driving, Los Angeles left tackle Russell Okung clearly moved and dropped into pass protection before the ball was snapped. Garrett stopped rushing Okung, and several other players slowed in anticipation of a whistle. But nothing was called, the play continued and Philip Rivers threw a 29-yard touchdown pass.
So what should have been a false start instead became a touchdown.
“It was so obvious,” Garrett said. “To my mind, he’s moved, nobody else has moved and the ball hasn’t moved, so it’s kinda textbook. The flag should be up. I don’t understand how you don’t see it. That’s his job is to look down the line and see when people are jumping offside or false starting, but I’ve got to keep on finishing the play.”
Garrett also referenced the Sept. 30 game at Oakland when a strip sack of Derek Carr was nullified by a quick whistle. The Browns scooped the apparent fumble and were running for a TD when the officials ruled Carr was in the grasp.
NFL senior vice president of officiating Al Riveron later acknowledged the crew made the wrong call.
The Cardinals fired offensive coordinator Mike McCoy a day after the team was blown out at home by the Broncos on national television.
First-year head coach Steve Wilks said quarterbacks coach Byron Leftwich will take over the job for a club that is 1-6, the worst record in the league.
McCoy, former head coach of the San Diego Chargers, was fired for the second time in as many seasons. He was let go after 10 games as Broncos coordinator last year.
... Bears linebacker Khalil Mack (ankle) practiced for the first time this week, although on a limited basis. Bears coach Matt Nagy says he thought Mack “moved around pretty good.”
Mack, who has played in 70 straight games and has never missed a start, is listed as questionable for Sunday's game against the Patriots.
... The Raiders will be without running back Marshawn Lynch (groin) for at least a month and it remains to be seen if he’s played his last down for his hometown team.