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Report: McDaniels withdrew because he wasn’t the frontrunner


After reports emerged that Patriots offensive coordinator Josh McDaniels withdrew his name from consideration for the Browns head-coaching job, we surmised via Twitter that it would be a great way to save face if he knew he wasn’t getting the job.

We apparently surmised correctly.  For a change.

Mary Kay Cabot of the Cleveland Plain Dealer reports that McDaniels withdrew his name after the Browns told McDaniels has wasn’t the frontrunner.

Ever since the Browns fired coach Rob Chudzinski following only one year on the job, some league insiders theorized that the Browns wouldn’t have dumped Chud after a single season without knowing who they wanted — and without knowing that they could get him.  Conventional wisdom pointed to McDaniels being the guy who had been lined up on a wink-nod-fart basis.

If so, it could be that McDaniels was simply the safety net, with the Browns comfortable hiring him but using the ongoing search as a way to find someone even better.

If Cabot’s report is accurate, it’s possible that McDaniels previously had been led to believe by someone with the Browns that McDaniels was “the guy,” that he got nervous as more and more names emerged as potential candidates, and that he decided to seek assurances.  When the assurances didn’t come, McDaniels opted (as many in his position would have) to opt out.

And so the Browns will continue their search.  If they ultimately don’t find someone better than McDaniels, nothing stops them from trying to hire him.

After all, the Eagles hired Chip Kelly last year after he supposedly withdrew his name from consideration.

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57 Responses to “Report: McDaniels withdrew because he wasn’t the frontrunner”
  1. newenglandsports11 says: Jan 8, 2014 8:47 PM

    This reeks of the Browns leaking this story to save face. After all, it is the Factory of Sadness.

  2. gohomeweeden says: Jan 8, 2014 8:48 PM

    I want Whisenhunt!

  3. apac6586 says: Jan 8, 2014 8:48 PM

    Not gonna lie, I feel better about him withdrawing his name after hearing this. Although I’m not a McDaniels fan, I do like that he (apparently) didn’t like the FO… Although he probably doesn’t.

  4. legend30 says: Jan 8, 2014 9:03 PM

    When you’re upset with your team, just take a deep breathe and thank God, that you’re not a Cleveland fan.

  5. eddiek77 says: Jan 8, 2014 9:04 PM

    This is Josh’s way of saying, ‘I’m gonna take my ball and go home.’ Damn. Makes me want to cry.

  6. johninthewest says: Jan 8, 2014 9:08 PM

    Saving face is correct. This Little boy will never maintain and hold a head coaching position in the NFL.

    Look what he did here in Denver before we sent him on his way!

  7. thefiesty1 says: Jan 8, 2014 9:08 PM

    McDaniels is better off without Cleveland. Nobody in their right mind really wants that train wreak.

  8. 12strikes says: Jan 8, 2014 9:09 PM

    McDaniels…you are no Chip Kelly

  9. bigdinla says: Jan 8, 2014 9:10 PM

    Gus Malhzan come on down!

  10. lennydpocketqb says: Jan 8, 2014 9:12 PM

    Cleveland can do better than McDaniels.

  11. agc99 says: Jan 8, 2014 9:18 PM

    What about one of the Shanahan’s?

  12. thestrategyexpert says: Jan 8, 2014 9:26 PM

    Gosh whenever somebody suggests to me I’m not the front-runner, I just want the job more. Who wants a job that is easy to get, or just given to you without any competition? That’s boring and too easy, I only want the jobs I can’t get. The others are a dime a dozen!

    Anyhow back to trying to find somebody in the Miami Dolphins office that will take my phone call. I’m getting that job until I’m convinced it’s impossible and that I’m not even allowed to enter as a runner at all in the race. Just because I’m on the sidelines now doesn’t mean I can’t find somebody that is willing to take a chance and spare a square of paper with a number on it. It’s not a real race if you don’t let the hungriest competitor try to take the win from the person who would otherwise win it sans an ambitious challenger.

  13. dlk47823 says: Jan 8, 2014 9:31 PM

    the Browns front office want to keep control over all player personnel issues. This will prevent them from getting Whisenhunt, or anyone else thats had NFL success. Probably end up with a college coach or coordinator.

  14. ytownjoe says: Jan 8, 2014 9:32 PM

    Now that he’s out of the picture, how do we get rid of Lombardi and Banner?

  15. oldcracker says: Jan 8, 2014 9:34 PM

    Dumbardi’s “boy” and the 3 Stooges even fumble that.

    Makes me yearn for the days of Dwight Clark and Chris Palmer.

  16. The League's Crusade Against The Steelers Continues says: Jan 8, 2014 9:39 PM

    The Browns will be looking for a new head coach in 2015.

  17. jr4real says: Jan 8, 2014 9:40 PM

    uh cheaters can’t face real competition.

  18. cfballfan1 says: Jan 8, 2014 9:40 PM

    “Wink nod fart” – is that j-school jargon?

  19. waldoampere says: Jan 8, 2014 9:41 PM

    It’s starting to sound like McDaniels and the Browns front office deserve each other. Of course, the Browns fans deserve better than both of them.

  20. MikeisWise says: Jan 8, 2014 9:41 PM

    Sure bro.

  21. mrlaloosh says: Jan 8, 2014 9:43 PM

    Does it really matter who Cleveland hires? Failure is their profession. They’re very good at it. Why spoil a great story with success.

  22. 1rockyracoon says: Jan 8, 2014 9:43 PM

    If McDaniels was the backup plan, what happens when the Browns don’t get the coach they want? Last year they thought they had a shot at Chip Kelly and ended up with Chudzinski. That didn’t turn out too well.

  23. tiger7575 says: Jan 8, 2014 9:44 PM

    Has anyone ever seen Lane Kiffen and Josh McWeasel in the same room?

  24. jjackwagon says: Jan 8, 2014 9:48 PM

    Don’t know why he was in the running to begin with. Aren’t NFL teams supposed to try to get better?

  25. raiderlyfe510 says: Jan 8, 2014 9:50 PM

    gohomeweeden says:
    Jan 8, 2014 8:48 PM
    I want Whisenhunt!

    Whisenhunt is good if you have an established QB in place like Detroit and the Redskins. As proven in Arizona his downfall is developing QBs.

  26. sdchicken says: Jan 8, 2014 9:50 PM

    League sources say that the Browns are close to signing Mike Dantoni from the Lakers. He is known as an offensive genius who likes the new up tempo style that is so popular in today’s nfl.

  27. thegonz13 says: Jan 8, 2014 9:53 PM

    So if McDaniels isn’t the frontrunner, who is? Which schmuck will inherit this mess?

  28. bbillsfan01 says: Jan 8, 2014 9:55 PM

    McDaniels is a whiney little bitch. Still riding Bill’s coat tails. He’s a poor OC and even worse HC. Grow up Joshie

  29. mortyglickstein says: Jan 8, 2014 9:57 PM

    I heard Joe Gruden is available

  30. rcali says: Jan 8, 2014 9:59 PM

    How about that coach from Friday Night Lights?

  31. blantoncollier says: Jan 8, 2014 10:02 PM

    I am not sure this is the whole story. Cabot’s article also states that Adam Schefter is reporting McDaniels had an “awesome” meeting with the Browns but felt it wasn’t the right time to make a move.

    It also states that Peter King tweeted Haslam “loved him (McDaniels)”.

    So this smells like a leak by Banner and Dumbardi to cover their butts when they couldn’t deliver once again the top choice.

  32. arnoldziffel says: Jan 8, 2014 10:04 PM

    Looks like the 3 Stooges are just getting warmed up.

    The theory that they dumped Chud already knowing who they wanted to replace him appears to be far from the truth.

    To trade your number one back in the middle of the season and give your entire team a reason not to focus on the next upcoming game … and then become “concerned” that the team wasn’t showing improvement is a screwball way to run a franchise – especially when the owner is already in well-advertised hot water for cheating his business associates and is perhaps on his way to prison.

  33. peopletrains says: Jan 8, 2014 10:04 PM

    Probably an effort by the Browns to get McDaniels’ price down and it backfired.

  34. deerhuntinfool71 says: Jan 8, 2014 10:07 PM

    I didnt really want mcdaniels but thought maybe he learned from his last mistakes.but I am curious if this is just a bluff or they do have dibs on a real good canidate. You better believe Haslam will back up the brinks truck for the real deal ! Make it happen jimmy!

  35. muleski says: Jan 8, 2014 10:08 PM

    Wise move by McDaniels. He jumped, at a very young age, on the Broncos offer, and the next time he needs to have it all lined up perfectly, or there may be no third time. Not impressed, at all by the Browns. Haslam seems like a spoiled kid. Their organization is almost as dysfunctional as the Dolphins. Even if everybody was “all in” on McDaniels, he should have walked on this deal. If he was not the frontrunner, he absolutely should have bailed. And did.

    We’ll see him succeed BB in NE after Brady retires. BB will remain as the GM. McDaniels will be a good HC in this league. He’s all of 37 years old. He was 32 when the Broncos hired him. Many years ahead of him.

  36. habsfanatic says: Jan 8, 2014 10:10 PM

    The fact that they haven’t hired someone yet may suggest that they’re targeting someone who’s in the playoffs now. Greg Roman maybe?

  37. bryans49ers says: Jan 8, 2014 10:16 PM

    This franchise is obviously being run by a handful of democrat liberals

  38. bensstinkyfingers says: Jan 8, 2014 10:18 PM

    Gruden was reported in Berea, Wednesday morning, and not the OC for the bungles!!

  39. dynastyposeiden says: Jan 8, 2014 10:20 PM

    the browns have real raider potential the way the keep running around and bashing their skulls together . The new coach had better learn how to block the double eye gouge and the circular ricochet punch. nyuk nyuk nyuk

  40. elliottcovert says: Jan 8, 2014 10:24 PM

    Hang in there Browns fans, your team is going to get better eventually and the nightmare of Art Modell will be nothing but a distant memory.

  41. therealraider says: Jan 8, 2014 10:26 PM

    I’m inclined to go with McDaniels on this one.. If he takes the Cleveland Job and fails (which is highly likely for any coach who accepts it) That’s a wrap on his head coaching opportunities .. However he can keep riding on Tom Brady’s coattails and land a better head job in the future.

  42. jimjets says: Jan 8, 2014 10:28 PM

    As a hater of all things patriot this is simply too rich. If McDaniels wasn’t first he was going to take his ball and go home. Football is a game for man what’s this little clown doing involved in it?

  43. u4iadman says: Jan 8, 2014 10:29 PM

    Guy drafted Tebow. Nuf said.

  44. ninefingers9 says: Jan 8, 2014 10:29 PM

    Prediction: This narcissistic clown will have 20 year career of “near miss” failures!

  45. carpi2 says: Jan 8, 2014 10:39 PM

    So…the Browns canned Chudzinski after just one season, because they were hoping to land McDaniels?

    I have 2 issues with this whole situation:

    1) If the Browns wanted McDaniels that much, then why didn’t they originally hire him last year?

    2) Did the Browns ever take notice to McDaniels’ coaching career at any point, in which he was not a member of the Patriot organization?

  46. dabmasterhap says: Jan 8, 2014 10:50 PM

    He wasn’t guaranteed the job. End of story. Let’s wait and see who they bring in. I sure didn’t like Chud, especial how well Cam is playing now. Steve Smith stories true? Factory of sadness is moved to Cincinnati since Andy is the QB. Manzal forth pick? Heck yea!!! Most exciting QB in a long time. It’s all good, just chill and let this play out…

  47. thefiesty1 says: Jan 8, 2014 11:00 PM

    McDaniels and everyone else should run from this train wreak of a franchise.

  48. dino2997 says: Jan 8, 2014 11:00 PM

    It’s beyond me why the Browns would even consider him. This is a blessing in disguise for a front office that obviously doesn’t know any better.

  49. noncentsicle says: Jan 8, 2014 11:03 PM

    I can’t imagine a circumstance where Joshie would be considered a front runner for any head coaching job. He’d be 3rd or 4th option at best.

  50. iamlegend1219 says: Jan 8, 2014 11:06 PM

    Ahhh…if he wasn’t the frontrunner…..does it even matter?

  51. nflsecurity862 says: Jan 8, 2014 11:18 PM

    It seemed like everybody but PFT readers knew this guy was never going to be the Browns next HC.

  52. 2001asterisk2003asterisk2004asterisk says: Jan 8, 2014 11:26 PM

    What a spoiled baby brat. Whaaaaaa, i’m not number one.

  53. realfootballfan says: Jan 8, 2014 11:27 PM

    Don’t be surprised to see a headline, “Browns hire McDaniels,” in the coming days. Not buying this one bit.

  54. thunderstruck24 says: Jan 8, 2014 11:29 PM

    Book it…. Here’s Johnny as in Jon Gruden
    Ohio boy linked to haslam already, worked with banner and Lombardi
    And as he signed off the last Monday night game he told tirico that he will really miss working with him

  55. chargerdillon says: Jan 8, 2014 11:30 PM

    Keep your damn mits of Wisenhunt! We got something special going in San Diego.

    Kidding of course, Wiz is great and he’d make a great coach for ANY team. Hell he took the Cardinals to the Superbowl, that’s quite telling.

    Sad if he left, but he deserves another shot!

  56. ltpm3 says: Jan 8, 2014 11:31 PM

    Don’t blame McDaniels for withdrawing his name either way.. why would he want to take a job where the last guy was fired after one year? And if they had him go to Cleveland only to play him against someone they really wanted, he needed to stay in New England. Very happy you are staying with the Patriots, somewhere you are wanted!!

  57. dawpoundsuds says: Jan 9, 2014 9:52 AM

    Malzahn + J Football, Ben Tate in Free Agency or Carey/Seastrunk/Mason later in the draft = potent. Beef up the guards via FA and you got yourself some potential.

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