Cleveland adds Vikings assistant Kirby Wilson to coaching staff


The Cleveland Browns have lured Vikings running backs coach Kirby Wilson away from Minnesota.

The Browns confirmed Wilson will be the team's new running game coordinator.

Wilson, 54, will join Hue Jackson's coaching staff in Cleveland. Jackson is the former offensive coordinator with Cincinnati, but attended the same California high school as Wilson.

1500 ESPN reports Wilson's contract expired with the Vikings on Tuesday and less than a day later he was headed for Cleveland. The Vikings had wanted to keep Wilson, who had done a nice job since joining Mike Zimmer's staff prior to the 2014 season.

He coached the NFL's leading rusher Adrian Peterson this season and got a combined 1,100 yards out of Matt Asiata and rookie Jerick McKinnon without Peterson in 2014.

But Wilson had long been looking for an opportunity to climb the NFL coaching ladder. Since joining the league in 1997 he has served mostly as a running backs coach, but had interviewed for offensive coordinator jobs recently with both Jacksonville and Baltimore.

According to ESPN, the Vikings had blocked the Browns' request to interview Wilson prior to his contract expiring, but they were unable to come to terms with Wilson on a new contract.

In Cleveland, Wilson's new role will likely include more game-planning responsibilities than he had in Minnesota.

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