The Cleveland Browns named former St. Louis Rams offensive coordinator Pat Shurmur their head coach Thursday after interviewing only two other candidates. Shurmur replaces former Browns head coach Eric Mangini, who was relieved of his duties following the end of the regular season. More details on the Shurmur hire.
"It’s an honor and a privilege to join an organization with such a rich history and tradition as the Cleveland Browns," Shurmur said. "I have the utmost respect for Coach Holmgren and Tom Heckert, and I am impressed with the direction in which they have this franchise going. I have known Tom for most of my pro coaching career, and while we were in Philadelphia, he and I developed an outstanding relationship. I want to thank Mike and Tom, as well as Randy Lerner, for this tremendous opportunity. I also want to thank the St. Louis Rams and Steve Spagnuolo for two terrific seasons and for giving me a chance to be a coordinator at this level. I am looking forward to this challenge and can’t wait to get started in helping to build the Browns back to one of the elite teams in the NFL."
We will no doubt evaluate this coaching hire more as the offseason approaches. Shurmur was a name that seemed to come out of nowhere, and there will probably be a sense of uneasiness among fans who were hoping for a bigger name like Jon Gruden or a head coach with some previous experience.
For the Browns to make the strong push that they did for Shurmur tells me that he fell in line with how Mike Holmgren wants the head coach of the Browns should operate. For now, the best we can do is have faith in Holmgren, general manager Tom Heckert, and Shurmur to build upon this past year's roster and get this team back to postseason contention.
No word on the assistant coaches yet, but Tony Grossi speculates that Rob Ryan will not be back.