After a few weeks of slight speculation, the Browns have finally made a decision: Eric Mangini will be the next head coach of the team, officially making the transformation from “What’s His Name That Gets Us Pizza” to the main man, head honcho, and potential savior/pariah complete. It doesn’t come as much of a surprise, as he was pretty much the only candidate over the last few weeks. He agreed to a four-year deal and has already begun picking his coordinators. The vaunted Rob Chudzinski era is over, as Mangini is going to hire Jets quarterbacks coach Brian Daboll as the new offensive coordinator. As for the defense, Raiders (yes, the Raiders…) defensive coordinator Rob Ryan will pack his bags for Cleveland.
At this point, there is no use in complaining about the credentials of Mangini or his approach with players. Personally, I am interested in his hiring because I think he can bring discipline to this team. He will not cater to the prima donna athlete, which is something the Browns are in desperate need of. I realize that his naysayers point to the fact that he never criticized Brett Favre, but that was a terrible situation for Mangini to begin with. I wouldn’t be surprised if he was told to essentially let Favre do his thing and not give him the patented Mangini verbal beatdown so many players were accustomed to in New York. Whether or not his approach is effective in Cleveland remains to be seen, but his age (he is turning only 38 on January 19th) and determined nature are at the very least intriguing to me.
Now comes the hiring of a GM. All signs point to George Kokinis, but we will just have to wait and see. There will be plenty more to come on Mangini’s hiring and the search for the new GM, so be sure to keep checking here.