- Jamison Hensley, ESPN Staff Writer
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The Browns made the right call when they decided to add an offensive coordinator, and they needed to hire someone with experience.
But hiring Brad Childress -- who was named offensive coordinator, according to a league source -- is not the answer. The Browns really needed to push to get Mike Sherman, who appears to be headed to the Miami Dolphins to be their offensive coordinator.
The problem with Childress is his track record with offenses. In the eight years Childress has been a head coach or offensive coordinator in the NFL, his offenses have ranked in the bottom half of the league five times.
The disturbing part is he's been an NFL playcaller for only one season. The result? The Vikings finished 23rd in yards and 26th in points (17.6 per game) in 2006 before Childress passed those duties over to offensive coordinator Darrell Bevell the next season. Childress didn't call the plays in his three seasons as the Eagles' offensive coordinator (Andy Reid held that role), and he didn't call the plays in his final four seasons with the Vikings.
That résumé doesn't inspire confidence that he will turn around a Browns offense that scored more than 17 points twice last season. Then again, it's hard to imagine any coordinator could really affect an offense that has major question marks at quarterback and running back as well as a void of playmakers at wide receiver.
Hiring Childress isn't the worst move. The team could have simply promoted quarterbacks coach Mark Whipple, but that wouldn't have accomplished anything.
Pat Shurmur was overwhelmed in his first season as the Browns' head coach, and he needed to have the responsibility of running the offense taken away. The only way an inexperienced head coach will succeed is if he has experienced coordinators supporting him. The Browns will have veteran voices with Childress and defensive coordinator Dick Jauron.
If I were Shurmur, I would rely on Childress' advice but not his play-calling ability.