There’s a very strong rumor in league circles that the Cleveland Browns escorted G.M. George Kokinis out of the building today, the first business day into the team’s bye week.
Jay Glazer has heard the same thing, and he’ll be posting something soon at FOXSports.com.
For now, it’s a rumor — but a very, very strong one. (Or just “very”. We’re on the fence about it.)
Recently, the Browns fired Erin O’Brien, the director of football operations. O’Brien served as coach Eric Mangini’s personal assistant when Mangini was the head coach of the Jets.
Kokinis was hand picked by Mangini to be the G.M. In many cities, the General Manager supervises the head coach and holds “final say” authority over the roster. In Cleveland, Kokinis is (was?) second fiddle to Mangini.
There previously had been speculation in league circles that Mangini would throw Kokinis under the bus if necessary to save Mangini’s job. If the rumor of Kokinis’ departure is accurate, the speculation will now be that Mangini sacrificed Kokinis now in order to get through the rest of the year, and possibly beyond.
UPDATE: We’re hearing the same information from more and more sources, including one source who witnessed Kokinis collect his things and exit the building.