No one knows what a sale to Jimmy Haslam III might mean for the current Browns hierarchy, but it looks like we’ll find out soon enough.
Adam Schefter of ESPN and the NFL Network both report that Haslem has completed his purchase of the team from Randy Lerner. Schefter reports that the total sale price will be $1 billion, with Haslam paying $700 million now for a controlling interest in the team. There will be a second payment of more than $300 million at a later date.
The first rumors of a possible sale broke on July 27th, which means things have moved quite quickly for Haslam and the Browns. Haslam still needs to be approved by the rest of the NFL owners, but that’s not thought to be a major stumbling block since Haslam was already an investor in the Pittsburgh Steelers.
Now we’ll wait for confirmation of former Eagles president Joe Banner’s involvement with the new ownership group and some idea of what the ownership change might mean for the regime running the Browns right now. There’s not much chance that General Manager Tom Heckert or coach Pat Shurmur will be going anywhere anytime soon, but team president Mike Holmgren’s future with the team is much less clear.
It has been less than three years since Holmgren joined the franchise in a major shakeup of the franchise. We might be on the brink of another one as the Browns change hands.