Saturday, December 29, 2012
Report: Browns to clean house
ESPN.com news services
The Cleveland Browns are expected to clean house Monday, letting go of both coach Pat Shurmur and general manager Tom Heckert, the Cleveland Plain Dealer reported Saturday, citing league sources.
The newspaper reported that Shurmur and Heckert either will be fired or will part ways with new Browns owner Jimmy Haslam III and CEO Joe Banner. Cleveland (5-10) wraps up its season with a road game against the Pittsburgh Steelers on Sunday and is assured a last-place finish in the AFC North for the second straight year.
Shurmur's status became tenuous once Haslam took over the team and Mike Holmgren exited the organization earlier this season.
Sources told the Plain Dealer that Shurmur and Heckert both know they will be let go but have not been informed of the decision.
"Listen, I get this, and my concerns are for my team and making sure that we do all the right things during the game to give our guys the best chance to win," the 47-year-old Shurmur, 9-22 in two seasons, told the Plain Dealer. "That's where I'm at. We have not won enough football games, and I know that's the way this thing works, but in our situation I see improvement and I'll leave it at that."
In his first season, Shurmur didn't have an offseason to get to know his players, much less install an offense because of the lockout. In his second season, he started three rookies on offense, including quarterback Brandon Weeden and running back Trent Richardson.
Cleveland began this season 0-5. The Browns persevered, though, and actually orchestrated a three-game winning streak late in the year.
Haslam's purchase of the Browns from Randy Lerner for $1.05 billion was approved by the NFL in October. He brought in Banner as CEO after Banner spent 19 seasons with the Philadelphia Eagles, the past 12 as team president.
Earlier this month, the Browns hired Alec Scheiner to be their new team president. Scheiner had spent eight years with the Cowboys, including the past five as senior vice president and general counsel.
Information from ESPN AFC North blogger Jamison Hensley and The Associated Press was used in this report.