- Associated Press - Wednesday, January 1, 2020


CLEVELAND (AP) - Cleveland Browns general manager John Dorsey resigned two days after the team fired coach Freddie Kitchens.

Dorsey’s stunning departure on Tuesday came after he met with owner Jimmy Haslam, who is once again with his wife, Dee, cleaning house and restructuring the front office after a disappointing 6-10 season.

The Browns are in the preliminary stages of their coaching search, which will be affected by Dorsey leaving. The team has received permission to interview several candidates, including New England offensive coordinator Josh McDaniels and Baltimore offensive coordinator Greg Roman.

The Haslams have fired five coaches since buying the team from Randy Lerner in 2012.

Dorsey had revamped the Browns during his two seasons as GM, but his hiring of Kitchens backfired as the Browns fell way short of expectations and missed the playoffs for the 17th straight season - the NFL’s longest current drought.

EAST RUTHERFORD, N.J. (AP) - New York Giants general manager Dave Gettleman, under intense scrutiny in the wake of a disappointing season that led to the firing of coach Pat Shurmur, conceded Tuesday that his job performance over the last two seasons was “not good enough.”

Gettleman has seen the Giants win nine games over his two seasons in charge, and many felt the 68-year-old should have been fired along with Shurmur after New York lost to Philadelphia on Sunday to finish a 4-12 season.

Speaking for almost 30 minutes in his first meeting with the media since training camp, Gettleman was asked to grade himself over the last two seasons.

“Really, it hasn’t been good enough,” he said. “It will get better.”

Gettleman spent much of his time at the podium defending his moves and accepting blame for what has gone wrong.

JACKSONVILLE, Fla. (AP) - The Jacksonville Jaguars are retaining coach Doug Marrone and general manager Dave Caldwell despite consecutive losing seasons.

Owner Shad Khan made the announcement Tuesday after “positive meetings” with Marrone, Caldwell, their staffs and several players.

“This is not the time to consider an overhaul of our organization,” Khan said.

Marrone and Caldwell have two years remaining on their contracts, and Khan made it clear that expectations are high for 2020. Khan fired top executive Tom Coughlin two weeks ago, clearly identifying the old-school coach’s overbearing ways as the main problem. Coughlin’s position will not be filled.

Marrone and Caldwell will report directly to Khan.

HOUSTON (AP) - J.J. Watt has been added to Houston’s active roster ahead of the Texans playoff game against the Buffalo Bills.

Watt, who tore a pectoral muscle in October, returned to practice on Dec. 24 and was activated to the roster from the injured reserve on Tuesday. The Texans host the Bills on Saturday afternoon.

The defensive end said last week that he was confident that he’d play this week but that it’s unlikely that he’ll participate in as many snaps as he has throughout his career.

This is the third time in four seasons that the three-time NFL Defensive Player of the Year has had a major injury.


PISCATAWAY, N.J. (AP) - Rutgers coach C. Vivian Stringer has offered her condolences to the family of late radio personality Don Imus, who used a racial slur to describe the Scarlet Knights in 2007 after the team lost the national championship game to Tennessee.

The 79-year-old Imus died last week of complications from lung disease. Stringer prepared a statement for her press conference following a 66-56 loss to Indiana on Tuesday addressing the disc jockey’s passing.

Stringer said she hasn’t thought much about Imus since forgiving him years ago. She said she met with Imus after he used the slur on his radio show and he told her he “didn’t come to save his job but to save his soul. That’s what he said, and he felt remorse for the words he said.


KAPALUA, Hawaii (AP) - The PGA Tour is beginning a new year by announcing a 10-year deal with Sentry Insurance as title sponsor of the Tournament of Champions, making Kapalua the home of PGA Tour winners through at least the end of the next decade.

The extension means Wisconsin-based Sentry will be the longest-running sponsor since the winners-only event moved to Maui in 1999.

Sentry, a business-focused mutual insurance company, for years dealt directly with customers instead of leaning on a national advertising campaign. Chairman and CEO Pete McPartland described it as a quiet brand until it became title sponsor of the winners-only PGA Tour event that starts each year at Kapalua.

Three years into a five-year contract, Sentry signed a new deal for 10 years.


BRISBANE, Australia (AP) - Venus Williams has been forced to pull out of the Brisbane International following an undisclosed “setback” in training.

Tournament officials said Wednesday a replacement for the 52nd-ranked Williams will be named on Thursday. Williams had been given a wild card for the Brisbane event which starts Jan. 6.

The 39-year-old Williams still hopes to contest the Adelaide International from Jan. 13.

“Unfortunately I won’t be starting my season in Brisbane due to an unexpected setback during my training,” she said in a statement on Wednesday. “I look forward to being in Australia in the New Year and will see everyone at Adelaide.”


More AP sports: https://apnews.com/apf-sports and https://twitter.com/AP_Sports

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