If not Bill Cowher, then who? I'm going to go out on a limb here, call it a gut feeling, I don't see Cowher on the Browns sideline.
I'm not saying, I don't want him, which is quite the opposite of how I feel on hiring him. I just can easily see one of two scenarios happening, Phil pretty much still having his gig and hiring his own man, or Randy offering Cowher the job and him quietly declining it.
That being needed to be said, what qualities should the Browns look as a new coach of this storied franchise, which is a shell of its former self, and who fits the mold.
Romeo Crennel is a good coordinator/position coach, just not a head coach. He's quite successful at being a player-friendly coach, while the headman be it Belichick or Parcells gets to play the general.
As a head coach, this doesn't work for a number of reasons. The nice guy doesn't win ball games as a head coach, it takes a man with passion and fire for the game, a man that will win at all costs.
Romeo seems afraid to bruise a player's ego by telling him to get it in gear. This doesn't work. That being said here are some things that I and fellow Browns fans want to see.
A Passion to Win
“You play to win the game”, so said Herm Edwards, it echoes what every football fan across the planet and especially in the Buckeye state, feels in their veins.
Romeo just sits with this grimace across his face and a “We'll get 'em next time” type of attitude. This doesn't sit well with a group of fans who have a fiery coach like Woody Hayes or a stoic one like Paul Brown who did whatever it took to win and put this as the most important thing when running their team.
No one individual was above the rest on those teams, and they were all united in one common goal and that was to win.
”Must play well with others”
An underrated quality in a head coach. You can't have the head coach, GM, players and president all locking horns and bickering all the time. Common sense, really.
Defense wins championships
The last time Cleveland has had a great defense?...even just a GOOD defense. The Dawg Defense is the lone that stands out since the Super Bowl Era. You can't win the division with a sub par defense, let alone the one that currently stands in at the current positions.
With teams like Pittsburgh and Baltimore being built on the aforementioned philosophy, you can't get by them with an offensive powered team. We need to at least get a Good defense, and make it able to last for years on end much like our inter-conference rivals.
Understand what football and this team means to this city.
Sports and especially football in the state of Ohio and Cleveland means a lot to people, we're somewhat Blue Collar when it comes to sports, and expect the same type of attitude from our teams.
We can tell when someone exhibits that attitude or when they half-ass it. Lately its been the latter. Also when you talk about the Browns, you're not talking about your average run-of-the-mill franchises.
This is Bernie Kosar's team, The home of the Dawg Pound, the Kardiac Kids, Jim Browns, Otto Grahams, Paul Browns. This is a franchise that was once considered the New York Yankees of Pro Football, the eight-time champions, and this is something I don't think Romeo seemed to be able to grasp.
“We HATE The Steelers”
Ohioans and Clevelanders have many natural rivals in the sports world. With the Tribe you have the Yankees, Red Sox and the White Sox. With the Cavs, it used to be the Jordan led Bulls, but in the King James era it has become the Detroit Pistons and Washington Wizards.
The Buckeyes hatred of Michigan is more than just a rivalry here, it transcends sports. With the Browns there's several, in the 80's it was Denver, and currently it's supposed to be Baltimore and Pittsburgh...the last one is not supposed to be a joke, but to many Steeler fans it has.
The sad fact is the last time the Browns have beaten the Steelers was Tim Couch's last hurrah in 2003 when he beat them 33-13 in Pittsburgh, since then the Steelers have dominated the Browns in pretty much every category, in wins, division championships, even during the 2005 and 2006 seasons, there was more Steeler fans than Browns fan by virtue of jersey sightings in my area of Akron/Canton. The new coach has to make this a goal in making this rivalry return to its former glory.
The Browns are like the drummer from REO Speedwagon; no one knows who they are. Every NFL team that has ever been successful has a moniker or is known for what they do and what they do best. The Cowboys are America's team, The Rams were “The Greatest Show on Turf”, The much-hated Steelers (in these parts anyway), had the Steel Curtain.
Even the Browns back in the 80's were known as an offensive team that would never say die, “The Kardiac Kids”, were a moniker that the Browns had from 1978-1982, the last identity the Browns truly have had was from 1985 to 1993, during the Kosar/Dawg defense days.
Since then, there hasn't been one, and until one is made, we will be stuck in the same rut we have been since the Browns came back in 1999.
“Lets get the Gleam!”
These are the words that were said by Marty Schottenheimer, the Browns haven't gotten the gleam since 1964, and havn't even come close to sniffing since the 1989 season where they lost in the AFC Championship to the Elway's Broncos.
There's only one current Cleveland sports team that's close to getting the gleam is playing at the Quicken Loans Arena, and God's Speed to them, but the current coach has to be one that wants to rise Cleveland's first Lombardi in a near future February.
And these are the very broad characteristics that I want in my coach of the Cleveland Browns, part two will be the candidates (other than Bill), who could fit the mold.
Also, if you have not yet, I encourage all my fellow Dawgs to vote at cowher09.com.