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NFL roundup: 49ers deny Harbaugh nearly traded to Browns

The SportsXchange

Responding to a published report, the San Francisco 49ers denied a deal was in place to trade head coach Jim Harbaugh to the Cleveland Browns last month.

The Browns issued a statement that didn't deny the ProFootballTalk.com report Friday that a deal was in place to send Harbaugh to Cleveland for multiple draft picks, but Harbaugh opted not to leave San Francisco.

"The team conducted an extensive coaching search, and explored several options," the Browns said in the statement. "That search produced an outstanding head coach in Mike Pettine and we're excited about his future with the club."

The 49ers vehemently denied the report to NFL.com, calling it "completely false" and "ridiculous."

--- New York Giants head coach Tom Coughlin revealed that he has agreed to a one-year contract extension that will take him through the 2015 season.

Coughlin, who signed a three-year extension after winning Super Bowl XLVI in 2011, will turn 68 years old in August. That previous extension was due to expire after the 2014 season.

---The Seattle Seahawks plan to release wide receiver Sidney Rice, ESPN reported.

Rice signed a five-year, $41 million contract with the Seahawks in 2011 and is due $17.5 million in base salary over the next two seasons.

However, he missed the final eight games of the regular season and the playoffs after he tore an ACL against the St. Louis Rams on Oct. 28.

---Just one day after Washington Redskins tight end Fred Davis was suspended indefinitely by the NFL for violating the league's substance-abuse policy, he was arrested Thursday for DUI, according to the Washington Post.

Davis was suspended indefinitely without pay Wednesday. The ban began immediately. The 28-year-old is set to become a free agent in March. He previously served a four-game suspension for a failed drug test in 2011.

Davis said Wednesday the suspension stems from a supplement he took that contained a banned substance.

---Earlier this month, a Kansas City radio station reported the Kansas City Chiefs had decided they were not going to attempt to re-sign left tackle Branden Albert, who is soon to become an unrestricted free agent. At the NFL Scouting Combine, general manager John Dorsey said that was news to him.

"This is the first I heard about it," Dorsey said. "We have ongoing conversations with the representatives for all of our unrestricted free agents and it just so happens we've had conversations with Branden's representatives. That's the beauty of the combine; all those guys are here. We will continue to have conversations as the combine passes."

---Detroit Lions general manager Martin Mayhew sounded optimistic about the prospects of crafting a contract extension for All-Pro defensive tackle Ndamukong Suh, even though negotiations have yet to begin because Suh hasn't picked an agent.

"I finally talked to him yesterday and he said he's getting close to picking an agent but he hasn't picked one yet," Mayhew said. "I declined to start the negotiations with him right there. We are going to wait for him to get an agent and we will get rolling."
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