With the hiring of Mike Holmgren as team president and Cleveland’s 4-11 record, many experts think Eric Mangini will be fired. They think Holmgren will want one of his former coaches in place. This very well could be but I think it will probably be up to Mangini.
Like him or not, Mangini has improved the Browns in his first year on the job and Holmgren will surely see this. After almost completely tearing apart last years under achieving, 4-12 team and replacing it with a bunch of selfless and hard working players who don’t know the meaning of the word quit. Last year’s team had very few respected leaders, this year’s team is full of them. After a very dismal first half season, the players are buying into Mangini’s system and it’s showing on the field. A good foundation has been laid, something Chris Palmer, Butch Davis and Romeo Crennel failed to do.
Mike Holmgren has said he will meet with Mangini sometime next week after the season ends, to decide Eric’s future with the Browns. Holmgren said he will not base his decision on a three or four game winning streak but the total body of work. Either way, this should bode well for Mangini when they sit down face to face.
Randy Lerner did the right thing in hiring a strong football person to run the Browns and make the kinds of decisions he has failed at. Hiring Mangini was no mistake, not hiring a strong GM was. Too much power can sometimes be a coaches downfall. That won’t be a problem any longer.
There will be plenty of changes talked about when Holmgren and Mangini have their little face to face. Offensive philosophy and offensive coordinator are sure to be brought up. How receptive Mangini is to some changes and his willingness to not have the final say on somethings will determine whether he remains as the Browns head coach. In other words, Holmgren needs to know if they can work together. So the decision ultimately rests with Mangini.