Sports Outside the Beltway

Browns Fire Eric Mangini

In a move that should have been made a year earlier, the Cleveland Browns have made a coaching change.   ESPN:

The Cleveland Browns fired coach Eric Mangini on Monday after his second straight 5-11 season.

“This decision was not easy for me, and it was one into which I put a great deal of thought,” Browns president Mike Holmgren said in a statement. “Although we have made improvements this season, my responsibility is to ensure that we establish a program that will allow this team to compete at a championship level. That will continue to be our goal in everything we do. I want to thank Eric for all of his contributions to the Cleveland Browns, and wish him and his family the best of luck in the future.”

Mangini said he believes the Browns are headed in the right direction.

“I have a deep respect for the players that I have coached the past two years and how they have made a profound difference in changing the culture — a tougher, smarter, more competitive, selfless team that never gave up,” Mangini said in the statement. “Our goal was to build a team for long-term success. The core characteristics we were dedicated to, I believe, will help achieve that goal, and have provided a strong identity for this football team and have helped to create a positive foundation upon which the organization can continue to build.”

While not quite on par with the Cowboys’ hire of Wade Phillips a few years back, Cleveland’s hiring Mangini to begin with made no sense.  He was an abject failure with the Jets and was immediately scooped up by the previous Browns’ regime with no interim success as a coordinator to boost his value.  And then Holmgren inexplicably decided to stay the course rather than bringing in someone with either a proven track record or other reason for hope.

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