Chris Jones (Canadian football coach)

Chris Jones (born September 25, 1967) is an American football coach currently serving as a senior defensive specialist for the Cleveland Browns of the National Football League (NFL).[1] He was previously the head coach and general manager of the Saskatchewan Roughriders of the Canadian Football League for three seasons. He has been the defensive coordinator for the Montreal Alouettes, Calgary Stampeders, and Toronto Argonauts. Jones has won 4 Grey Cup rings with 4 different teams: With Montreal in 2002, Calgary in 2008, Toronto in 2012, and Edmonton in 2015.[2]

Chris Jones
Cleveland Browns
Born: (1967-09-25) September 25, 1967
South Pittsburg, Tennessee
Career information
Position(s)Senior defensive specialist
Career history
As coach
1995–1996Tennessee Tech
Graduate assistant
Graduate assistant
1998UT Martin
Defensive line coach
1999–2001Tennessee Tech
Defensive line coach / recruiting coordinator
2002Montreal Alouettes
Defensive line coach
20032007Montreal Alouettes
Defensive coordinator
20082010Calgary Stampeders
Defensive coordinator
20102011Calgary Stampeders
Def. coord. / asst. head coach / asst. Director of Player Personnel
20122013Toronto Argonauts
Def. coord. / asst. head coach / asst. general manager
20142015Edmonton Eskimos
Head coach
20162018Saskatchewan Roughriders
Head coach / general manager
2019–presentCleveland Browns
Defensive asst. coach
Career highlights and awards

College career

Born in South Pittsburg, Tennessee, Jones played college football for the University of Tennessee at Chattanooga as a walk-on, and received little playing time. Instead, he began focusing on a coaching career.[3][4]

Coaching career

NCAA career

Jones began his coaching career at North Jackson High School in Stevenson, Alabama, helping the team win a state championship in 1993. He began coaching NCAA football at Tennessee Tech University in 1995, where he served as a graduate assistant under head coach Jim Ragland. After serving one season as a graduate assistant at the University of Alabama, he joined the University of Tennessee at Martin coaching staff as a defensive line coach in 1998. He returned to Tennessee Tech in 1999 as a defensive line coach and recruiting coordinator.

Early CFL career

Jones moved to the CFL in 2002, after being an Ast. Coach for Arena League Las Vegas in the spring and summer, after being named the new defensive line coach of the Montreal Alouettes helping Montreal win the 90th Grey Cup. He remained there until 2007. In 2008, he was named defensive coordinator of the Calgary Stampeders, which won the 96th Grey Cup, and was promoted to Assistant Coach in 2010. He later joined the Toronto Argonauts as Defensive Coordinator and was part of the team that won the 100th Grey Cup.

Edmonton Eskimos

Jones was named head coach of the Edmonton Eskimos in November 2013. After a 12-6 2014 season, he was nominated for CFL Coach of the Year. Jones was nominated as the West representative for coach of the year in 2015 after winning 14 of the 18 regular season games. The East representative and winner was former Eskimos assistant coach Rick Campbell.[5] Jones' Eskimos were victorious over the Ottawa Redblacks in the 103rd Grey Cup game. Following the season the divisional rival Saskatchewan Roughriders were given permission by GM Ed Hervey to entering into negotiations to fill their vacant head coaching position.[6]

Saskatchewan Roughriders

On December 7, 2015, a mere week after winning the 2015 Grey Cup, it was announced that Jones would be the new general manager and head coach of the Saskatchewan Roughriders. After a disappointing 3-15 season in 2015 Jones took over in 2016 and things got off to poor start, as the team won only one of their first 11 games.[7] However, down the stretch they would win four of the remaining seven games and finish with a record of 5-13. 2017 saw the Riders return to being a competitive team, as the club qualified for the playoffs for the first time since 2014. After defeating the Ottawa Redblacks in a crossover playoff game the Riders were bested by the Toronto Argonauts who would go on to win the 105th Grey Cup.[8] Following the season the Riders extended Jones' contract through the 2019 CFL season.[9] Jones and the Riders continued to improve in the 2018 season, accumulating 12 wins, but in the playoffs they were defeated by the Winnipeg Blue Bombers. On January 8, 2019 Jones and the Riders agreed to a new two-year contract extension.[10]

Cleveland Browns

On January 15, 2019, one week after signing a contract extension with the Roughriders, Jones resigned from the Roughriders to take a job with the Cleveland Browns as their Senior Defensive Specialist.[11]

Personal life

Jones has a son from his first marriage and two daughters with his second wife. He and his family reside in South Pittsburg, Tennessee. He also has a dog and 2 cats.

CFL coaching record

TeamYearRegular seasonPostseason
WonLostTiesWin %FinishWonLostResult
EDM2014 1260.6662nd in West Division11Lost in West Final
EDM2015 1440.7781st in West Division20Won 103rd Grey Cup
SSK2016 5130.2785th in West DivisionFailed to qualify
SSK2017 1080.5564th in West Division11Lost in East Final
SSK2018 1260.6672nd in West Division01Lost in West Semi–Final
Total 53370.5891 Division
431 Grey Cup


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