Posted on: January 13, 2011 1:07 pm
Edited on: January 13, 2011 1:10 pm
There will be a lot of those questioning the hiring of Pat Shurmur has head coach of the Cleveland Browns.
Why not a proven coach, some will say. Why Shurrmur?
I like the hiring. It's not as if Shurmur's Rams offenses lit it up, but they did make progress. He worked well with rookie quarterback Sam Bradford this season.
Shurrmur has had a lot of coaching stops, so he's seasoned. He's also a guy who will run the West Coast offense, which president Mike Homlgren badly wants in Cleveland.
Of the eight teams left playing this weekend, six are led by coaches in their first stints as head men. Only New England and Seattle have coaches who were head coaches at previous stops.
I like the idea of hiring coordinators and giving them a shot, rather than recycling former head coaches.
Browns fans will grumble today. But who knows, you might be getting the offensive equivalent of Atlanta's Mike Smith.
They'd take that, right?
Posted on: January 7, 2010 9:14 pm
The Cleveland Browns' price tag for trying to build a winner got a little higher last month when the team was forced to settle a grievance with Samir Suleiman over a reneged oral contract for a job, according to league sources.
The Browns agreed to a verbal contract with Suleiman last February, but the day before he was to start they reneged on his three-year deal to become the team's senior director of football operations. Suleiman filed a grievance and the two sides agreed on an undisclosed financial settlement.
Suleiman had worked for the St. Louis Rams for nine seasons before deciding to leave the team for the Browns. He handled a lot of the contract negotiations in St. Louis.
When reached Thursday, Suleiman would not comment on the details but did say a settlement was agreed upon.
Browns owner Randy Lerner has spent a lot of money in his pursuit of a winner. One league sources estimated that with the $50-million contract he gave to Mike Holmgren to be his football czar, the Browns have spent close to $80 million.
That includes money they still owed to former general managers Phil Savage and George Kokinis and coach Romeo Crennel and some of his staff.
"I don't know where they get it all," one league source said.
Suleiman was considered one of the bright, young salary-cap wizards when he was with the Rams, working closely with general manager Jay Zygmunt. He spent the last year away from the NFL waiting for his case to go through the dispute resolution process in the league office, but now that it is settled he is free to work for any team.
The Browns are also involved in a grievance process with Kokinis, who they fired during the season after less than a year on the job. The Browns will have to prove that he was fired for cause so they don't have to pay him the remaining money on his contract, which is believed to be $3.5 million.
Posted on: December 21, 2009 9:06 pm
Edited on: December 21, 2009 9:09 pm
Cleveland Browns owner Randy Lerner surely has to print money in his basement.
How else can we explain the money he's spending to try and win a Super Bowl? The Browns officially hired Mike Holmgren as team president Monday. The deal is believed to be $50 million for 10 years.
That's money on top of the $20 million or so Lerner still owes former general manager Phil Savage, fired coach Romeo Crennel and some of his staff, and the $4 million he owes George Kokinis, who was fired this year after being pegged to replace Savage. The Browns are trying not to pay Kokinis, saying he was fired for just cause, but they probably won't win.
"No way they win that," said one league source.
Throw in the $8 million that current coach Eric Mangini cost them when he requested a remodel of the team's practice facility and you're talking $82 million. That's not counting Mangini's salary of a reported $2.5 million per season, which means he's owed $10 million after this season. Add that to the tally and it's even higher.
Holmgren might hire a general manager -- $1 million a year at least -- and if Mangini is replaced you're talking another $15 to $20 million for a new coach. That's minimum, depending on the name.
If Holmgren is going to assume the role Bill Parcells has with the Miami Dolphins, it begs this question: If he's so good at personnel, why did the Seattle Seahawks take those powers from him when he was coach?
Holmgren was a great coach. I don't think he's a great personnel man. The Browns could have gone younger and cheaper, and they would have been better off.
I'm a big believer in giving rising personnel men the chance to succeed. Many of them have earned it.
The Browns again are guilty of the name game, instead of hiring a grinder in the personnel department of some team that would have been the right man for the job.
None of that matters I guess when you have a machine that spits out money better than any ATM. Look I know Randy Lerner got the team and money the old-fashioned way: He inherited it. But that doesn't mean he has to rip through it all the first 10 years he has it.
Posted on: November 2, 2009 8:16 pm
Edited on: November 2, 2009 8:31 pm
There are reports out Monday night that the Cleveland Browns have fired first-year general manager George Kokinis.
What a disaster this team is right now. They can't score, they can't win, they can't get any love from the hometown fans.
Cleveland, you sure you wanted the NFL back?
Kokinis is a well-respected scout who rarely talks, but the word was he was miserable in Cleveland. The reports today are that he was fired and escorted from the building.
Owner Randy Lerner has a mess on his hands. Lerner said coach Eric Mangini was safe on Monday, but for how long? Lerner is still on the hook for big money for former general manager Phil Savage and coach Romeo Crennel and his staff. Now this? Maybe somebody should escort Lerner from the building.
Oh wait, they can't. Cleveland fans can only hope.
Posted on: September 30, 2009 12:39 pm
Edited on: September 30, 2009 3:06 pm
So the Cleveland Browns are turning to Derek Anderson at quarterback (story here ) and sitting down Brady Quinn? I bet Browns fans would like to see Eric Mangini and owner Randy Lerner sit down ... together on a plane out of town.
The Browns are horrible and sitting Quinn down for a guy who threw three interceptions last week makes no sense. It doesn't matter if Otto Graham walked in now in his prime, the Browns would still stink.Why? There are no weapons for the quarterback. Who do they throw to? Who runs it? A slow-to-the-hole Jamal Lewis? Jerome Harrison? Or rookie James Davis. No passing game means no running game either.
It's not just the quarterback. I always say a franchise passer can cure your ills. But not here. We haven't seen either of these passers look like one of those, but even if they were there are still too many issues.
It starts with Mangini. He's too uptight. He plays the mind games that players hate.
At least he made this decision known on Wednesday this time, instead of playing that stupid game he played in Week 1 where he thought he was being smart not letting his decision out for competititve reasons.
Again, does it matter?
Bring back Bernie Kosar or Brian Sipe in their primes. The Browns wouldn't be good with them either. This team isn't good. The offense is awful.
How's that decision to bring in Mangini, Lerner? Just like many thought it would be.
Posted on: April 15, 2009 4:03 pm
Did the "new"Cleveland Browns franchise like being an expansion team so much that it wants to do it all over again?
That's sure what it looks like.
The Browns didn't score an offensive touchdown in their final six games last season, but with Braylon Edwards about to be traded and Kellen Winslow already gone, mabye they're thinking they'd like to top that in 2009.
What the heck is Eric Mangini doing?
It drives me nuts when a new coach takes over and he starts ripping apart a roster because the players aren't "his" guys. Talent is far more important than having your guys. But Mangini has already traded away Winslow and now Edwards isn't far behind. On top of that, there's talk he's willing to trade Brady Quinn as well.
One word: Moronic.
The Browns fans might still have those expansion memories in the front of thier minds. It wasn't that long ago.
Bring them back. That's what your team will look like in 2009 if Mangini and the gang make some of the trades we keep hearing they might make.
Posted on: February 27, 2009 1:56 pm
One is that new coach Eric Mangini isn't about to take on players who can be problems. That's clear the way he sent Winslow packing and the way he's already handling overweight defensive tackle Shaun Rogers, who also wants out.
The second mesage is that the Browns think highly of second-year tight end Martin Rucker. He's a pass catcher in the Winslow mold and he's far less of a player who needs to be coddled.
If Rucker can develop into a 60-catch player, the Browns will be thrilled. I'm still not sure trading away a player like Winslow who is only 25 is the right move.
But I get it.
Posted on: January 3, 2009 6:26 pm
Cleveland Browns owner Randy Lerner has a crush.
It's a schoolboy crush on Bill Belichick. Just look at all the coaches and general manager candidates that are linked to Lerner's Browns for the openings they have for those two positions. Most of the candidates have Belichick backgrounds.
Memo to Lerner: The tree might sound like a good idea, but the last two acorns from the strong oak sprouted into trees that died before they came close to becoming full grown.
Lerner should know. One of them was his tree, former coach Romeo Crennel, who failed miserably.
There is a report that the Browns are leaning toward possibly hiring former New York Jets coach Eric Mangini, if they can't land Belichick protégé Scott Pioli as general manager. Why Mangini? He supposedly wowed Lerner in an interview. Does that overshadow his failures with the New York Jets?
Wait, he's a Belichick disciple. Good DNA, right?
Doesn't always work.
How does Notre Dame feel now about Charlie Weis? Maybe those men looked good because of Belichick. The man's a coaching genius, you know.
If were Lerner I'd think long and hard about going after Mangini. There are other quality candidates out there who don't have ties to Belichick.