Harbaugh: 'I know nothing about a trade'

Harbaugh: 'I know nothing about a trade'
February 22, 2014, 2:45 am
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I know nothing about a trade with the Cleveland Browns and us involving me.
Jim Harbaugh

Programming note: 49ers Insider Matt Maiocco is on the ground in Indianapolis to cover the NFL Combine. Check back for his coverage all weekend and get the full report on SportsNet Central every night at 6 and 10:30 p.m.

Coach Jim Harbaugh denied any knowledge of declining a trade that would have sent him from the 49ers to the Cleveland Browns.

In a text message to CSN Bay Area’s Dave Feldman early Saturday morning from NFL Scouting Combine in Indianapolis, Harbaugh wrote:

“For the record, I echo Jed York’s comment…'isn’t true.' I know nothing about a trade with the Cleveland Browns and us involving me.”

On Friday, Pro Football Talk reported the 49ers and Browns agreed to a trade that would have sent multiple draft picks to the 49ers in exchange for Harbaugh. But, according to the report, Harbaugh decided to remain with the 49ers.

[REPORT: Browns nearly acquired Harbaugh via trade]

Team CEO Jed York wrote on Twitter, “Report isn’t true.”

Both York and Harbaugh have previously expressed interest in a long-term contract. The sides could not come together on an extension last year, but are expected to enter into negotiations again this offseason. Harbaugh has two seasons remaining on the five-year, $25 million contract he signed in January 2011.

The 49ers' season ended on Jan. 19 with a loss to the Seattle Seahawks in the NFC Championship game. On Jan. 21, in his season-ending press conference, Harbaugh acknowledged talking with the Cleveland Browns.

"I've had conversations with the Cleveland Browns," Harbaugh said.

[RATTO: Harbaugh trade would have provided decades of talk]


"Regarding our coaches," Harbaugh answered.

Harbaugh was asked, "So that's a possibility as far as that opening?"

And Harbaugh responded, "Yeah, there are possibilities."

[RELATED: Harbaugh calls report of near-trade 'ridiculous']

The Browns did not interview any of the 49ers' assistant coaches for their head-coaching vacancy. Cleveland hired former Buffalo Bills defensive coordinator Mike Pettine on Jan. 23. And on Feb. 11, Browns owner Jimmy Haslam unexpectedly fired general manager Mike Lombardi, who is close friends with Harbaugh, and team president Joe Banner.