Jul 28, 2013; Pittsford, NY, USA; Buffalo Bills defensive coordinator Mike Pettine points as he talks to the Bills defense during training camp at St. John Fisher College. Mandatory Credit: Kevin Hoffman-USA TODAY Sports

Browns to hire Jim O'Neil to be DC, Jeff Hafley to be DBs coach, Brian Fleury to help with LBs

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The Cleveland Browns will hire Jim O’Neil to be their defensive coordinator.  This has been a move that was ready to happen when Mike Pettine was announced as the head coach of the team.  The Browns were simply waiting for permission from the Buffalo Bills to talk to him.

O’Neil, 35, served as the linebackers coach for Pettine in Buffalo, has worked for him for five years including this past year with the Bills and four with the New York Jets.  He worked with defensive backs in his time under Pettine with the Jets.  Pettine has known O’Neil since he played for his dad in high school.

Jeff Hafley will be the Browns secondary coach and Pettine had actually hired Hafley only 11 days before to work for him in Buffalo.  Hafley, 34, spent the previous three seasons with the Tampa Bay Buccaneers, working as a safeties coach most recently.  He went with Greg Schiano from Rutgers to the NFL and before he got there, he was with Pittsburgh.

Brian Fleury is going to be an assistant linebackers coach after spending last year as a defensive quality control coach under Pettine.  Before that, he spent four years at Towson in FCS and four years at Sacred Heart.  He played quarterback for Towson after transferring from Maryland, where he would later operate as a graduate assistant.

The defensive staff is starting to take shape and not surprisingly, Pettine is gathering many of the coaches he handpicked with the Bills.  The staff is made up of a number of young coaches.  O’Neil knows Pettine from high school and O’Neil appears to be familiar with Fleury from Towson.

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