The Cleveland Browns' Search for a Head Coach is a Joke...Right?

Each new name thrown out there is like another throbbing pain to an already immensely painful migraine: Mike Mularkey? Pat Shurmur? Perry Fewell?

Someone wake me when this coaching search is over, or when team president Mike Holmgren has a press conference to announce either Jon Gruden or himself as the next head coach of the Browns. And I don’t say that simply because  I want to see the team coached by a high-profile guy.

It’s because I don’t see how a hire like Mularkey, Shurmur, or Fewell would possibly energize the fan base and take this team to the next level. The Browns are sitting at the threshold of that “next level,” with an opportunity to really build upon some of the success they had in 2010. Some of that has already been sacrificed by the firing of Eric Mangini. No matter what, it always takes time for a team and coaching staff to gel. Unless, of course, you’re the Pittsburgh Steelers.

Obviously, the organization has to be thorough when searching for the next head coach of the team – many people lamented the fact that owner Randy Lerner hired Mangini so quickly – but the Browns and the fan base don’t need another coordinator trying to make it as a head coach, whether it’s the guy’s first try or a second attempt after a failed first effort. How does that possibly make the situation any better than the one under Mangini?

If Holmgren cannot hire an established head coach, or simply take the reins himself, it’s going to take a lot to make everyone eventually buy into the decision. Let’s just hope then that he makes the right one.

Dick's Sporting Goods presents "Hell Week":

Tags: Cleveland Browns Eric Mangini Head Coach Mike Holmgren Mike Mularkey Pat Shurmur Perry Fewell

  • Chris Glenn


  • Wayne

    It all seems so short-sighted.
    Mangini wasn’t a bad coach.
    Daboll was a bad coordinator.

    We just threw the baby out with the bathwater…again.
    Lessons learned from the Indians…or rather, not learned.

  • Ronbo

    Yes I believe Mangini had something going good BUT Daboll was horrible & that canceled out all the good.I totally have the utmost confidence in Holmgren no matter who he choses,with his pedigree you have to.In Holmgren we trust.

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  • DC

    I would love to have read the Falcons or Saints posts when they hired Mike Smith or Sean Payton. Were they worried about energizing the fan base then? Ken Wisenhunt, Todd Haley, Mike Tomlin are a couple more coordinators that have had succes that I’m sure weren’t particularly popular choices at the time. Let Holmgren go through the process and find the right guy. And then find some players that can win.

  • Cleveland Frowns

    Even before I saw DC’s comment I was going to say the same thing.

    “I don’t see how a hire like Mularkey, Shurmur, or Fewell would possibly energize the fan base and take this team to the next level.”

    Energizing the fan base and taking the team to the next level are two completely different things. Fan energy always follows the team making it to the next level, but certainly isn’t a prerequisite. I might feel better about a guy like Shurmur than a guy like Gruden, if only because I haven’t had to listen to him play a babbling sycophant in the MNF booth for the last two seasons.

  • JC

    absolutely DC!

    Take a good, hard look at the coaches in the playoffs right now and at their experience level when they got hired. It makes for a pretty interesting study. We don’t need a big splash fancy hire, we just need the right guy for the job…like Atlanta, New Orleans, KC, Phil, GB, Pit, Bal,..etc. all did.

    Everyone hated Mangini because his players suposedly didn’t like him. You should do a little research and see what Gruden’s ex-players say about him – much worse than anything I heard about Mangini.

  • Dawgpoundgal

    High profile does not equal wins. (e.g. Mariucchi in Detroit, Shanahan in Washington) I’m excited about finding the next new HC that will be excited about developing McCoy and leading the Browns to wins! All of you who are only looking for a “name” are likely to be disappointed. Gruden’s son is a senior in high school and on the football team that Gruden helps coach. I don’t see him leaving ESPN on 2011.

  • Tom Breck

    Everyone relax and chill. Gruden is going to get the position.

    Holmgren knew he was going to hire Gruden even before he fired Mangini. He’s throwing a bone to guys who’ve helped him over the years (Moriningwhig, Shurmur), complying with the Rooney Rule (Fewell) and taking a look at someone who deserves an interview(Mularkey). Once that’s over Gruden comes in and they act like Holmgren convinced him to return to coach.

    Not a reason to panic. Business as usual, we’re just not used to seeing successful people perform after watching what we have seen over the past years.

  • Clayton

    Tom is right. This is all a bit of a facade.

    In fact, I can say with confidence that Holmgren had no intention of keeping Mangini after this season, even at the time he kept him on at the start of the year. Holmgren did what any smart GM or President will do – cover your ass. If Mangini did very well this season and the Team improved to somewhere around .500 (which Holmgren did not expect), then Mike takes the credit for keeping Eric on. If what Holmgren actually thought privately would happen – what actually happened, then Mike gives Eric the axe and puts someone he trusts in there or himself to “save the day”.

    None of this is to belittle Holmgren – he is an opportunist as is any successful sports executive.

    Mangini never fit the Holmgren mold. He is way too conservative and careful and comes from a totally different background.

    It will be Gruden or Holmgren. The only other possibility is John Fox if Gruden says to Mike that he wants another year before coming back.

  • Cleveland Browns Report

    I believe Holmgren had his plan to release Mangini upon the Big Shows arrival in Cleveland. He kept Mangini around until capable of filing the position with someone he wants. Holmgren and Mangini come from two different “trees”–having two different philosophies. Expect Holmgren to hire an OC or Head Coach with west coast offense background–A pass first kinda guy instead of the run first mentality.

  • randall dean

    I really hope Holmgren plans on bringing in Gruden, Fox or himself. If the hire is going to be a coordinator, I would have much rather him kept Mangini. At first I didn’t care for the cat but I do feel like he had the team going in the right direction and I think if he woulda had one more year we coulda had something special. The worst thing mangini ever did was hire Daboll. He was his downfall.