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Conflicting reports about Rob Chudzinski talking to Browns candidates

e7815d9d2fbd948a31509dd461c1e76a AP

On Sunday morning, Ian Rapoport of NFL Network reported that former Browns head coach Rob Chudzinski has been sharing his thoughts about his experiences dealing with owner Jimmy Haslam, CEO Joe Banner and General Manager Mike Lombardi in Cleveland with the team’s candidates to replace him.

“Part of the problem here is — from what I’m told — candidates have been calling Rob Chudzinski, who went one-and-out with the Browns,” Rapaport said. “The reviews have not been favorable; he’s an honest guy. He’s been honest with them and when you talk to people involved in these interviews, it doesn’t sound like Banner, Lombardi and Haslam have all been on the same page.”

That’s not the only place where people appear to be on different pages. Mary Kay Cabot of the Cleveland Plain Dealer reports, via a league source, that Chudzinski has not spoken to any of the candidates for the job.

Seahawks defensive coordinator Dan Quinn, Cardinals defensive coordinator Todd Bowles, Patriots offensive coordinator Josh McDaniels, Packers quarterbacks coach Ben McAdoo and Chargers coordinator Ken Whisenhunt have all reportedly interviewed for the job, with McDaniels taking himself out of the running last week. Broncos offensive coordinator Adam Gase and Panthers defensive coordinator Sean McDermott may interview in the future.

Whether Chudzinski has spoken to candidates or not, the quick hook he got after signing a four-year deal to coach a Browns team that had no quarterback and made moves that suggested they were building toward better days in the future can likely speak for itself if candidates are wary of the triumvirate making the decisions in Cleveland.

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38 Responses to “Conflicting reports about Rob Chudzinski talking to Browns candidates”
  1. steelerdynasty2010 says: Jan 13, 2014 9:21 AM

    that last paragraph pretty much sums it up well. why would he need to say a word. they’ve done plenty on their own to make it look like a clown show. besides, if they’re calling him, do you really expect him to lie?

  2. ocgunslinger says: Jan 13, 2014 9:29 AM

    Agree wholeheartedly. Looks like more than just the Washington Redskins have dysfunctional management.

  3. harrisonhits2 says: Jan 13, 2014 9:36 AM

    Anyone who takes this job is just looking for the big payday. They know the inept Browns management will make it impossible to succeed anyway.

  4. natijim235 says: Jan 13, 2014 9:37 AM

    no one likes being the 4th stooge

  5. blantoncollier says: Jan 13, 2014 9:38 AM

    I can give you 10 million plus reasons Chud isn’t going to say anything bad about the Cleveland Browns.

    All the candidates have to do is look at the mess. Look at the leadership structure. Google some recent articles on the team. They can talk to their agents, talk to adults like Norv Turner and realize this job is radioactive.

    With Mike Dumbardi in a leadership role. A stealth operator, that doesn’t talk to the media on record. A known coach killer acting as the GM. And Joe Banner, a ruthless cap guy, making the player decisions, my Cleveland Browns are turning into the LA Clippers. Or the Washington Redskins. Or the____________

  6. hellephant says: Jan 13, 2014 9:39 AM

    I would guess that it’s at least implicitly — and likely explicitly — part of the multi-million dollar, multi-year “severance package” that is the remainder of Chud’s contract that he plead the Fifth if contacted by potential replacements. Plus, *of course* the guy who got unceremoniously fired after one year that felt like a rebuilding year is going to be negative about the experience. Is it even necessary to contact him to glean that?

  7. kosarkid says: Jan 13, 2014 9:39 AM

    At this point it feels as though the Browns are the ones being interviewed by the coaches.

  8. jaredl77 says: Jan 13, 2014 9:39 AM

    The correct thing for Chud to say when he answers the phone is “you saw how it ended, other than that, no comment”.

    Banner and Lombardi are coming off real bad right now. Does that mean the Browns are doomed? No, but it is going to create extra unneeded obstacles between them and winning.

  9. buddysguys says: Jan 13, 2014 9:39 AM

    “will you show me the stooges?”

  10. tommyribs says: Jan 13, 2014 9:41 AM

    The guy I am disappointed in here is Jimmy Haslam. The guy was a part owner of the Steelers. Was he even paying attention to his co-owners and how they rely on stability in their organization, and allow their coaches to have a bad year while keeping an eye on the long term.

    Of course candidates are going to talk to Chud, these men are not stupid, and the NFL Coaching profession is a fraternity. A lot of these guys are friends, or have a friendly relationship, and at a minimum they all understand the nature of the job, so Chud is going to be very honest with his peers in my opinion.

    If Chud was so awful as a HC, then why did his players to a man express outrage at his firing? He may not have hada great year, but it was the responsibility of the braintrust to help him get better.

    The Browns better not mess up this next hire.

  11. tvjules says: Jan 13, 2014 9:43 AM

    It’s called doing your due diligence. The strong contenders should call Chud.

  12. spkriegs says: Jan 13, 2014 9:48 AM

    Chudzinski was the perfect guy for that job on a number of levels, and was a coach that the fans could get behind. Shame on the Browns management… they are getting what they deserve.

  13. rjoppen says: Jan 13, 2014 9:54 AM

    My Lord is Mary Kay a hack .. “league sources confirm that Chudzinski has not talked to any of the coaches”.

    Let’s play out the logic on that .. who is the only possible source who can confirm that Chudzinski has not talked to ANY (not a single one) coaches.

    Gee, I wonder if her “league source” is Chudzinski?

    And I wonder if he is sharing this “version” of the events so he can hold onto his 10.5 million severance package that no doubt had “you cannot say a bad word about your former employer” language tied into it ..

  14. superdave426 says: Jan 13, 2014 10:00 AM

    All anyone has to do is ask someone that had to deal with Banner in Philly how it went, even his boyhood best friend and team owner had to get rid of him, such a nasty person.

  15. drsummeroff says: Jan 13, 2014 10:01 AM

    These clowns are probably already onto plan Z for the vacancy at this point as any candidate worth his salt is most likely taking a pass. Might as well give Richie Kotite a call Browns. Or maybe see if you can pry Lane Kiffen from whatever gig he’s at now. Then again, even those two would probably say “no thanks”.

  16. brownsclown says: Jan 13, 2014 10:01 AM

    Seems like the idiots are trying to hide the fact they are dumb.

    Who wouldn’t know that Haslam is under investigation by the FBI? Who thinks Dumbardi, fired five times, is anything but inept. And Bummer, we’ll he was the architect of ‘The Dream Team’!

    Enough said!

  17. vikingdoode says: Jan 13, 2014 10:02 AM

    Brad Childress

  18. nflofficeadmin says: Jan 13, 2014 10:02 AM

    Chud is dud.

  19. realitypolice says: Jan 13, 2014 10:04 AM

    Hmm…..Let’s see. I am in consideration for my first head coaching- a huge opportunity for me.

    I need to make an informed decision here because i it will have a major impact on my career. Who should I call for advice?

    I know! I’ll call the guy they just fired! I’m sure he’ll won’t be bitter at all and will give me a completely unbiased perspective on working there!

    That’s the ticket!

  20. mogogo1 says: Jan 13, 2014 10:10 AM

    It’s become the worse coaching job in the entire league. (Sure, the Cowboys coach is a puppet to Jerry Jones, but at least there are some decent players there and the job security is far better than with the Browns.)

  21. brownsfan40 says: Jan 13, 2014 10:35 AM

    As a Browns fan, I can’t stand Lombardi. The guy is on par with Matt Millen as a talent evaluator. What coach would want to come here if you can’t draft talent?

    As an experienced head coach, why would you come here knowing that management gives no more than 2 years to “get it together” to a coach? New regime gave less than that with Chud.

    As an experienced head coach, why go work for someone facing jail time after “duping” clients and “claiming he knew nothing”? If someone doesn’t know that millions of dollars are being scammed thru his own company, I don’t know if that “businessman” is someone I would trust to cut my paycheck.

    The QB position is a huge question mark and it’s not like there is a running game to take pressure off that position. Still need a G and RT after QB and RB. Need a WR2. The 2ndary needs help, and still need an ILB. What if my D-coordinator wants to run a 4-3 and now we need different personnel entirely? Doesn’t sound like I would be setup to succeed in 1-2 years before I would get fired.

    But hey, they ARE getting a new big screen for Cleveland Brow….er, First Energy Stadium. At least there is always that lake effect snow…

  22. 4greatestvikingever says: Jan 13, 2014 10:39 AM

    nuk,nuk,nuk

  23. habsfanatic says: Jan 13, 2014 10:40 AM

    If I were Chud, I wouldn’t want my future employers thinking that I could bash them after being fired, so I can understand why a report would surface saying that he was in fact not talking with the coaching candidates. I bet his agent had some hand in making this new report come to light.

  24. getyourownname says: Jan 13, 2014 10:43 AM

    Some of us predicted this would happen right after he was fired.

    “hellephant says:
    Jan 13, 2014 9:39 AM
    I would guess that it’s at least implicitly — and likely explicitly — part of the multi-million dollar, multi-year “severance package” that is the remainder of Chud’s contract that he plead the Fifth if contacted by potential replacements.”

    Setting aside for the moment that “the Fifth” does not apply, normally an employer who terminates an employee without cause is on the hook for the remainder of what the employee would have been paid for the full term of the agreement, and the only way the Browns can now require his silence is if either original contract has such a clause, or if they are giving him something in addition to what his original contract calls for. Maybe they offered additional severance to secure such silence, but there is nothing to require Chud to accept such an offer if he chose not to. Smart employees take the high road generally, but if you are getting called by friends, the effect is obvious when you are being guarded.

  25. tndiver says: Jan 13, 2014 10:50 AM

    I am sure other prospective coaches are calling Chud, but also Norv and Horton if they have their numbers. All this means is that Haslam is going to have to really open his wallet to sign the next coach. I look for the next coach to have a salary that puts him in the top 3 of coaching salaries! They will have to just to get someone to work with these idiots. I am sure they are also going to want some assurances of time on the job and control. Firing Chud after one year is going to be very costly!

  26. mrfrostyj says: Jan 13, 2014 10:50 AM

    Why does it matter what page Mike Lombardi is on? Isn’t his job just to get Joe Banner coffee? From what I hear from friends in Cleveland he was so bad at it they hired an “assistant gm” to make sure he gets it right. Pretty sure he has no decision making power. As a matter of fact, Whens the last time anyones seen him?

  27. emmac13 says: Jan 13, 2014 10:54 AM

    Ian Rapaport is the 4th stooge. His reporting is terrible. He has to be the first to break a story that is totally false. Remember it was a done deal with Chip Kelly as the Browns HC last year. WRONG!

  28. godofwine330 says: Jan 13, 2014 10:59 AM

    He didn’t get fired for wins and losses, that was just a convenient excuse. He was fired because he spoke up when Joe “Napoleon Dinolite” Banner and Mike “Wish He Never Left NFLN” Lombardi didn’t like him questioning thir bonehead roster moves and they thought he was just going to be a good little pawn and be happy to have a head coaching job in the NFL. I’m not talking about the trade of Richardson – he was terrible, but the best RB they could bring in was McGahee? And there’s no FB like a 220 pound FB? Keeping Greg “Look Ma, No Hands” Little and giving Devone “”I was gonna catch the ball, but I got…” Bess a new contract sight unseen? Come on.

    They never should have fired Chud, and now that they did they are floundering and nobody wants job because they did the last guy who had the job so wrong that the job is toxic. What, they didn’t think the word was going to get out across the entire NFL about the poor management and their tantrums? I talked to the guy who had my job before me and he gave me the skinny on my boss, actually told me that I’d be begging for my old job back in 3 months (he was almost right, if not for the 30 minute shorter drive at the new job I would have). The problem is, they are going to hire a bum and have to keep that bum for 2-3 years at least, even though he sucks, but they can’t fire him because they just fired Chud. Again, I hate that I love this team.

  29. bjwbrown2011 says: Jan 13, 2014 10:59 AM

    Just wait till the Browns run out of Candidates and have to interview Rob Chudzinski…

  30. phinfan says: Jan 13, 2014 10:59 AM

    ‘Triumvirate’?

    No sense dishing out fancy words for Browns fans.

  31. mancave001 says: Jan 13, 2014 11:35 AM

    As much as I dislike Banner, I really thought with him there that there would be stability. That was the mark of his tenure in Philly. Sure, he was a bean counter who made some decisions on the cheap, but the team he helped assemble was competitive for a decade.

    That said, I think firing Chud was an absolutely stupid decision, one that I have no doubt Banner was behind. I don’t think Haslam would come up with that idea on his own…not with trading away their franchise RB and having no QB. One year under those circumstances is just not enough. I’ve heard that there was a lot of behind the scenes friction. After the way things ended in Philly for Banner, it wouldn’t surprise me that Banner ha shad trouble playing nicely with a brash head coach.

  32. depotnator says: Jan 13, 2014 12:32 PM

    As a source, what has Mary Kay Cabot ever been right about? He didn’t know Chud would be fired, so obviously her sources regarding the Browns are not reliable.

  33. klroot says: Jan 13, 2014 12:33 PM

    How could anyone botch up running the Cleveland Browns so bad? Makes Randy Lerner, look good. Really ? How? After  Art? After Randy Lerner?, are you kidding me?

    Wuzz a Brown’s Fanatic

  34. td40 says: Jan 13, 2014 4:30 PM

    Next stop on the HC shopping list for the Browns braintrust: Craigslist.

  35. davereckon says: Jan 13, 2014 7:35 PM

    Here is a scary thought; Banner is Jerry Jones lite. Has all the trappings of the god complex, but lacks the physical ownership stake in the team.

    Banner’s tenure in Philly never recovered from releasing Brian Dawkins. Dawkins was the favorite of Jeff Lurie, and was let go over nickels. Banner always thought highly of himself, and never understood how he came across. These moves reek of his handi work, and probably supported by the fact that Haslam has “other things” to worry about .

    As far as having the expectation of stability from Banner’s years in Philly, sorry Cleveland, but it ain’t gonna happen. The stability in Philly comes from the owners box. Banner was a constant source of conflict. He was always the bad cop to Lurie’s good cop. The problem for you guys is that he doesn’t know how to be the good cop now that his role has changed.

  36. ballboy48 says: Jan 13, 2014 8:49 PM

    If Chud is still getting paid by the Browns, I’m sure in the contract that he signed, it had/has a defamation clause. Most clubs have them for coaches/players while still being paid by the club. Chudzinski would risk losing millions of dollars, if he talked with potential candidates, to the point it would put a negative light and interfere with the Browns hiring process. I’m not trying to say it didn’t happen, but I’m sure Chud isn’t going to risk money for this. Ian Rapaport has not had any reliable information at all this offseason. Just like he said Whisenhunt was going to be Detroit’s next HC. If Cleveland gets the guy they have been after all along, Adam Gase, it will make him look even more like an idiot.

  37. bensstinkyfingers says: Jan 13, 2014 10:54 PM

    Browns fans are about at the end of their ropes I get the feeling that when the stooges, fired Chud, they took what little confidence fans in them completely away. The fans will not be happy unless a big name proven coach is hired. Look for attendance to be a record lows next season, and one of the stooges will fall on the sword after next seasons losing record. Eventually Haslam will sell, Bannerd, Lomboturd, will be gone, and the rebuild will start again in 2016.

  38. lifelongbrownsfan says: Jan 14, 2014 3:11 PM

    There is no gag order that prevents Chudzinski from talking about he felt and what he experienced as coach of the Browns. That said, he would have a legal problem if he talked about the command structure or any other proprietary information about the team’s philosophy that could be construed as detrimental to the team’s competitive position.

    Regardless, nobody needs to talk to Chud to understand what’s going on in Berea. These guys are tripping over themselves to look stupid, which is a shame, because Browns fans have been unabashedly faithful through some pretty horrible crap the last 20 years, and deserve better.

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