It’s beyond dispute that Browns owner Randy Lerner got it backward in January, when he hired coach Eric Mangini before hiring G.M. George Kokinis.
Under a Patriots-style arrangement, the situation could have worked if Mangini had final say over the roster and the draft, and if Mangini and Kokinis worked together to build consensus on players and draft picks.
But we’ve been reminded tonight that, in order to finagle Kokinis away from the Ravens, the Browns had to give final say to Kokinis. And the Browns did, at least in theory.
The problem? Kokinis apparently believed that his contract meant what it said regarding the extent of his authority.
And so we’re told that Kokinis and Mangini repeatedly butted heads, and that their friendship quickly disintegrated due to their inability to reach an agreement on multiple personnel decisions.
It remains to be seen what will happen next. ESPN’s Adam Schefter and Chris Mortensen report that Lerner hopes to hire Ernie Accorsi as a consultant. We’ve heard some speculation that Accorsi might already be involved, even though Accorsi recommended Kokinis for the job.
In fact, one publication already is reporting that Accorsi will take over as the team’s General Manager.