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Holmgren on leaving: “I had already passed the baton”


Mike Holmgren said Monday there was no point hanging around Cleveland any longer, since he obviously wasn’t in charge.

“I was done,” Holmgren said, via Mary Kay Cabot of the Cleveland Plain Dealer. “I had already passed the baton.”

More accurately, the baton was taken from him when Jimmy Haslam bought the Browns and brought Joe Banner with him to run things. Now, Holmgren doesn’t know what he’s going to do. There was a report that he’d be interested in coaching the Cowboys, but he said he almost avoided Jerry Jones during last week’s trip because of it.

He said he wasn’t sure what was next, saying: “I honestly don’t know if I’m going to go back to work right away or not, and I don’t know if it will be in football.”

He said the experience of watching the Browns struggle “was very, very difficult for me to watch.”

While the Browns continued to struggle during his time, he said he “got the house a little bit in order here” and left things in good shape. Considering they were 12-31 during his time, it’s easy to mock that, but there is a degree of young talent on hand for the next administration to develop.

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28 Responses to “Holmgren on leaving: “I had already passed the baton””
  1. kane337 says: Nov 26, 2012 4:03 PM

    Thank you for the 2011 draft day trade…

    –Falcon fans

  2. blue18hutthutt says: Nov 26, 2012 4:08 PM

    Should’ve stuck with Mangini another year – he might’ve only finished 6-10 in his last year but he clearly had the team heading in the right direction, competing.

    They even beat the Saints and Patriots that year

  3. logicalvoicesays says: Nov 26, 2012 4:09 PM

    Everyone he’s talking to in that picture is jotting down his lunch request for that day.

  4. dasboat says: Nov 26, 2012 4:10 PM

    In the meantime, Holmgren, Norv Turner and Dave Wannstadt can get together and laugh about how they’ve parlayed lucky associations (Favre / Jimmy Johnson) into multi-year, multi-million dollar careers.

  5. keevel says: Nov 26, 2012 4:11 PM

    “Not good, but better than it was” is a horrible legacy to leave. Even when leaving the factory of sadness.

  6. sgtr0c says: Nov 26, 2012 4:11 PM

    would he come to the Eagles, where the owner has no problem letting a coach have power?

  7. golforepar says: Nov 26, 2012 4:17 PM

    If Holmgren only had Brett Favre and Reggie White!

  8. hedleykow says: Nov 26, 2012 4:19 PM

    The average poster on PFT could have left the Browns in as good of shape as Holmgren is leaving it.

    And for a much smaller salary!

  9. jacksonjames4 says: Nov 26, 2012 4:30 PM

    welcome to Buffalo, Mike.

  10. sfm073 says: Nov 26, 2012 4:31 PM

    Good coach, bad gm.

  11. nfloracle says: Nov 26, 2012 4:32 PM

    Like last week’s left over turkey, Holmgren has seen his best day. Time to retire, coach, and smell the roses.

  12. audient says: Nov 26, 2012 4:48 PM

    At the end of his presser today, he very awkwardly avoided saying goodbye, and instead made some ham handed comments about seeing everyone next Fall at training camp.

    I guess the questions then are, which training camp and in what capacity? Especially when there are no head coaching vacancies at the moment.

  13. budklosterman says: Nov 26, 2012 4:59 PM

    Holmgren built the 2005 Seahawks Superbowl team. His players were the core of that team. He knows how to build a team. The Browns were in horrible shape and they are a better team now than when he took over. Rome wasn’t built in a day!

  14. joemammy says: Nov 26, 2012 5:00 PM

    Passed the baton? More like had it smacked out of his hand…

  15. ytownie says: Nov 26, 2012 5:04 PM

    Well, the old saying” you get what you pay for” sure didn’t apply to Randy Lerner and the Browns. What a joke this guy was. He brought so much hope when he was hired and left with millions in his pockets and not a dime’s worth success.

  16. archetypeobscure says: Nov 26, 2012 5:04 PM

    He’s leaving because of that stunt he pulled with Jerry Jones on the Cowboys star at the 50yd line, right in front of both teams. It’s unethical and a distraction.

  17. mineallmine001 says: Nov 26, 2012 5:10 PM

    Come back to green bay mike! Maybe offensive coordinator would be a good role for you

  18. kane337 says: Nov 26, 2012 5:15 PM

    This guy could have had Julio Jones and RGIII.

  19. tedmurph says: Nov 26, 2012 5:21 PM

    kane337 says:Nov 26, 2012 4:03 PM

    Thank you for the 2011 draft day trade…

    –Falcon fans

    Are you kidding? Two 1rsts, a 2nd and two 4ths for a wide receiver? Who touches the ball 5-8 times a game? For a QB maybe. While Jones looks like he’s gonna be an outstanding player, he didn’t make 1000 yrds or the PBowl last yr. May end up a top 5, but prob not yet. Dimitroff called Belichick for advice on draft day and BB told him not to do it. They still haven’t won a playoff game. Trade looks better because browns didn’t do a good job with the picks.

  20. bartpkelly says: Nov 26, 2012 5:41 PM

    Holmgren is being blamed for all the loses, but his job was to run the team, hire GMs and help negotiate trades with Heckert. The team is now talented but very very young.

  21. realitypolice says: Nov 26, 2012 6:17 PM

    Umm…….Am I the only person who didn’t know he was still there?

  22. wozzmann1955 says: Nov 26, 2012 6:17 PM

    No one in Wisconsin wants him back,,,put him somewhere else

  23. realitypolice says: Nov 26, 2012 6:21 PM


    Yes because anytime you can trade 4 potential starters for one wide reciever, you have to do it.

  24. j0esixpack says: Nov 26, 2012 7:31 PM

    I’m with those giving credit to Holmgren

    Having an owner like Lerner made the task of improving the Browns a near impossible situation – and Holmgren DID improve the team.

    With a new owner there’s nothing wrong with him bringing in new leadership to build on what appears to be a decent foundation left by Holmgren.

    He left his workstation in better shape than he found it – that’s what all of us should strive for. I say this not as a Browns fan, but as a football fan who knows its not healthy for the NFL to have the Browns continue as a laughing-stock.

    And thanks to Holmgren, I don’t consider the Browns a laughingstock anymore. His comments were appropriately humble, yet appropriately proud.

    Nice job Mike.

  25. bensstinkyfingers says: Nov 26, 2012 9:20 PM

    THe browns will be in the superbowl within 4 years, it is all because of Big Mike and his football genius. He has the team on the right track now it will be up to Halsem and Banner to grab that golden baton from the Walrus’s sausage- like fingers, and run he final leg of the marathon to take the team over the finish line in first place. then I woke up and realized the team is not that much better than they were when he took ove, and the record alone speaks for itself. THey have slightly improved and have nice pieces, but it no way shape or form did they get what they paid for in holmy. Dude made off like a bandit. Wow

  26. Canyonero says: Nov 26, 2012 11:12 PM

    I’m not a Holmgren or Browns fan, but it’s worth adding he took on a team at the bottom of the AFC North, with very little daylight above.

    Cleveland has to kind of wait for Baltimore and Pittsburgh –and heck, Cincinnati– to rot off the vine before they can really do anything.

    In the meantime, they’re more talented and play harder.

  27. kmart0319 says: Nov 27, 2012 8:58 AM

    Joesixpack – With an owner like Lerner? Lerner hired Holmgren to run the show because Lerner had no clue. He gave Holmgren the run of the organization and the freedom to spend. Holmgren made the decision to hire Shurmer (poor HC at best) then made the decision to not go after ANYONE in FA to help the team of young players. The blame for the current state of the Browns rests solely on Holmgren.

  28. phildeez67 says: Nov 27, 2012 10:29 AM

    Holmgren & Ried to bring order, discipline, and west coast offense to Cowboys! good bye Garrett

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