Tom Heckert: No one’s sure what will happen after sale


There’s been a lot of speculation about what the impending sale of the Browns to Jimmy Haslem III will mean for team president Mike Holmgren, but he’s not the only person whose future with the organization will be impacted by new ownership.

General Manager Tom Heckert is one of those people. Heckert told Mary Kay Cabot of the Cleveland Plain Dealer that he has no idea what will happen under a new owner and doesn’t expect to have any more clarity until there’s actually a new owner.

“Until we sit down with the new owner, no one’s really sure what’s going to happen,” said Heckert. “I’ve told the guys on my staff and some of the players to just keep doing what they’re doing. From a football standpoint, there’s not a whole that can be changed at this point, so it’s got to be business as usual.”

One thing that will surely affect all these fronts is the question of whether or not former Eagles president Joe Banner is involved in the ownership group. Heckert told Cabot that he doesn’t know if his former boss with the Eagles is involved, but his previous relationship with Banner would surely come into play if Banner is in fact coming to Cleveland.

Head coach Pat Shurmur and offensive coordinator Brad Childress also worked for the Eagles while Banner was in their front office, which would at least mean they wouldn’t be dealing with someone they’ve never met before. Personal relationships are important, but the best argument any of the Browns personnel can make for remaining Browns personnel will come from better results on the field. Per Cabot, no big decisions will be made until after the 2012 season plays out so the current regime should have plenty of chances to make their case.

18 responses to “Tom Heckert: No one’s sure what will happen after sale

  1. My guess is that they keep Heckert and replace Holmgren with Banner. As for Shurmur, I expect that his fate will be determined by what happens on the field in 2012. I personally hope they keep him for at least another year, not because I’m sure that he’s a great coach, but because I think the constant turnover hurts the team, and besides, two years isn’t enough time to make a true evaluation of a coach unless of course the team is going 0-16. Chuck Noll had a losing record his first three seasons as head coach of the Steelers, but they kept him, and ended up being really glad they did.

  2. I for one wanted Heckertt as our GM but im not sold on him.he had a great 2010 draft but this past draft outside of trent wasn’t a good draft at all for me.and the bigger thing for me is he and holmgren do not realize that free agency is needed even if u have to overpay a little for a stop gap player for a yr or 2 for a position you need.

  3. It makes no sense to show either Heckert or Shurmur the door. And its too bad the Walrus will be gone.

    For the every first time since 1999–the team has a plan in place. Everyone(team President, Coach and GM and scouts) is onboard with the plan.

    There are good coaches and they are invested in the plan.

    The players are selected based on the plan.

    Now we need time to see if it will work or not. Maybe it will and maybe it wont.

    Randy Lerner just changed leadership and coaches every couple of years. There was never a plan. And the leaders he picked werent the right guys. So the team couldnt mature and grow.

    Now that the team is solidified, he goes and sells. And everyone in the front office and coaching staff is worried for their job.

    Just a wacky move at a wacky time.

  4. Heckert has done a pretty good job – Weeden may have been a reach for the 1st round, but if they had intel he’d be gone then he made a gutsy call. If Holmgren still has time on his contract and Shurmur doesn’t produce, why not give Holmgren one more shot a coaching? He’s a better coach than admin man anyway.

  5. Holmgren has made some decent moves (hiring Heckert), and some questionable moves (hiring Shurmur). One thing that nobody can fault him for is sticking to his guns and hiring his own guys. His guys all are on the same page, same plan, etc. Now that the Browns front office is finally on the same page, Holmgren leaving wouldn’t be a huge blow. Removing Heckert, and even Shurmur (whom i feel isn’t the answer at coach) would be detrimental to the future of the team. Phil Savages stains from previous drafts are finally gone, and Heckert has drafted well. If Haslam and Banner want a return on their investment, they will buy into the Heckert and at least give Shurmur a fair chance. W’s and L’s should be the litmus test. If Crennel and Savage were able to squeeze out 4 years with the crap they had, Heckert and Shurmur should be given just as long. I know as Browns fans we have FINALLY grown impatient…but lets get this right for once. I only hope Haslam and Banner have a finger on the pulse of the fans of the franchise they just purchased!

  6. I’m not worried about them leaving as many Browns fans are. What I am a little worried about is starting over again. This sale should have been made before Holmgren was hired or after Mangini was fired. New owner means now theory on how to grocery shop, new baggers, new cashiers, new managers, new groceries. I, like many Browns fans, don’t have the patience to go through yet another re-boot.

  7. Lets be honest Browns fans, the Heckert, Holmgren regime has produced a lousy 9 wins in 2 miserable seasons. Not to mention, most have Cleveland as the worst team again this year and Vegas has them a favorite in no games. New ownership couldn’t happen at a better time. Time to blow the Holmgren experiment up!

  8. Maybe when Shurmur is gone we can get a coach with experience. Manhunt was only coach with experience. Two whole years. Stop giving people a first chance and go with experience. Browns are so bad coach has enough on his plate without learning to be a head coach.

  9. One season is hardly “plenty of chances” for a front office. This team needs some form of continuity. Hiring a young coach is a long term investment. Pulling the trigger on yet another change won’t make much sense until the current front office staff have had 3-5 full league years under their collective belt.

  10. All hail the factory of sadness! The Cubs need a rivalry and you are putting on quite a show. Being run by someone who is 1000% a Steeler fan and former Steeler owner. This is simply a clandestine way to ensure futility for the Browns… forever. Worst case scenario…? Cowher comes back for the new owner and Colbert joins him.

  11. It’s time for Holmgren and staff to go “all-in” and sit the rookie QB and trade for a familiar veteran like Hasselbeck. It’s tough to clean house when you’re winning

  12. This organization has been terrible since it returned and this is just one more untimely decision, selling the majority rights right at the beginning of training camp … way to create more uncertainty at a crucial time that the whole organization needed to have and should have counted on stability.

  13. The rumor is that Holmgren has a guaranteed 5 year contract in Cleveland. If true, it then makes no sense to get rid of him or pay him for doing nothing for the better part of two seasons. If Banner does take over, the Browns should change his role. These players and the WCO offense are his baby. The Browns should get something for their money and not just pay him to sit in Seattle bouncing his grandchildren on his knee.
    I totally agree that Tom Heckert should be kept. Out of the three, I think he is the most important person in the Browns future. He has put together some good drafts. For the most part, he makes good personnel decisions. The Cleveland fan base is tired of a total overhaul every two or three years and I dont blame them.
    IMO, Shurmur is the weakest leak. He will probably get this season and most of next to prove he can conduct the team. My guess is that he will need at least six wins to continue. More importantly, the Browns will need to show some life on offense. Twenty TDs on offense per a season is not going to cut it.
    I bet the spin out of Berea this year will be that Shurmur had a rookie QB and still developing receivers and needs another chance and so forth. Hence, fans need to be patient. Then they will rationalize keeping him for 2013. The Browns need to get off to at least a .500 start in their first four games or Shurmur is toast.

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