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Could Outgoing Browns President Mike Holmgren End Up Coaching in Dallas Next Season?


[UPDATE by Chris Pokorny, 11/12/12 1:35 PM EST]: On Monday, Holmgren stopped by the media room in Berea, according to various local reporters. His intention for coming down was to deny the rumors of his interest in Dallas:

The original story is below, and I still pose the question: would it be a slap in the face if he went to Dallas to coach in 2013?


The Cleveland Browns have been searching for stability at head coach since returning to the league in 1999. When Mike Holmgren left the Seattle Seahawks following the 2008 season, he was one of several hot commodity former coaches that were on the market. Guys like Bill Cowher and Jon Gruden could not be lured back to the NFL, but at the end of the 2009 season, Holmgren was hired by Randy Lerner as team president.

Holmgren's role as the team president was confusing from the very beginning. When Holmgren decided to fire Eric Mangini, many fans were hoping he would step in as head coach. Instead, he hired the relatively inexperienced Pat Shurmur and was content with being the de facto owner who tried to stay out of everyone's business.

When Jimmy Haslam became the new owner of the Browns last month, it was announced that Holmgren would be leaving the Browns following the conclusion of the 2012 season. In a press conference shortly thereafter, Holmgren hinted that he wouldn't mind a return to coaching. Could that return to coaching come as soon as next season as part of the Dallas Cowboys? According to CBS Sports' Jason LaCanfora, sources are indicating that Holmgren would be interested in the job if a vacancy were to present itself.

Some sources who know Holmgren well believe Dallas is the one potential opening that would truly interest him, given the competitiveness of the roster, the skill players present and his long relationship with Cowboys owner Jerry Jones. Holmgren and Jones worked closely together for more than a decade on the NFL's Competition Committee. If the perfect scenario does not arise, sources close to Holmgren expect him to retire.

Interestingly enough, LaCanfora also reports that some league executives believe the departure of Joe Banner from Philadelphia to Cleveland is part of the reason for their collapse and impending doom.

Back to Holmgren, though, the rumor made its way to Cowboys owner Jerry Jones fairly quickly. In a radio interview, Jones praised Holmgren by gave the standard response that he's confident in current head coach Jason Garrett.

"I was interested in why he said [Holmgren] would like to be the coach," Jones said. "And that was good. We are good friends, have a lot of respect for each other, served on the competition committee together for eight years. He’s very familiar with how we operate the Cowboys, and does have a high appreciation for our talent that we have on the team right now. All of that is a compliment. Thank you, Mike."

I don't want to overreact too much since this is just a rumor at this point, but I think I'd be pretty upset at Holmgren if he immediately went to Dallas to be their head coach. I wouldn't fault the guy for making a great business decision; after all, it was Lerner who offered him a ton to not be the coach. With that said, it would still burn knowing that he put on a show of being done with coaching, only to change his mind right after leaving.

What would your reaction be if Holmgren coached for the Cowboys next season? Would that "vilify" him in a sense? Coincidentally, the Browns play the Cowboys in Dallas this Sunday.