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Everyone in the Browns front office hated each other

Cleveland Browns headquarters training camp

Can’t you just feel the comfort oozing out of this picture?

On Tuesday morning when the Cleveland Browns disseminated the changes that were taking place in Berea, it appeared to be wrath wrought in the wake of impulsive decisions made by an impatient billionaire. Turns out that Browns majority owner Jimmy Haslam III, rather than choosing sides, decided that he had had enough of the drama unfolding behind closed doors.

Northeast Ohio Media Group’s Mary Kay Cabot reports that in addition to Haslam growing tired of the negative perception surrounding the other two Stooges, CEO in Joe Banner and general manager in Mike Lombardi, the two men he fired were not exactly seeing eye-to-eye.

Browns CEO Joe Banner and his top lieutenant Mike Lombardi ended on bad terms with each other, and their discord led to Jimmy Haslam firing both, league sources told cleveland.com. Banner and Lombardi clashed over a number of things, but the disconnect came to a head during the tumultuous 25-day coaching search. […]

Banner wanted to fire his embattled GM, and Lombardi knew it. If he didn’t know, he missed the writing on the wall. But what Banner didn’t know — and should have — was that Haslam had also grown weary of him during the search — portrayed as dysfunctional in the local and national media — and was gearing up to fire him. The owner and the CEO didn’t see eye-to-eye over a number of candidates, and Haslam came to feel that Banner was the reason some didn’t want to interview for — or accept — his coaching job.

Earlier this week, ESPN’s Adam Schefter reported that Haslam’s discontent with Banner dated back 13 months when Chip Kelly, Haslam’s No. 1 target to take over for Pat Shurmur, opted to stay in Oregon. This decision, as has been reported, stemmed from a disagreement over Kelly’s control over his roster as well as his selections for assistant coaches. As it was, the assistant coaching non-starter also reportedly impacted the interview of Ken Whisenhunt as Joe Banner, ever the football man, felt that Wisenhunt’s selection for coordinators was not up to par.

In addition to notes on Josh McDaniels, Mike Pettine and others, sources also reportedly told Cabot that former Penn State coach Bill O’Brien, who was the top candidate of many vacancies this off-season, wasn’t interested in interviewing with the Browns this year because of the management team in place. At the end of it all, despite all of his proclamations to the contrary, the common denominator in all of these reports appears to be the bespectacled former CEO, the man who attempted to wield a bit too much power—giving his head coach in-season ultimatums, firing said head coach, attempting to oust his general manager—only to be left with a pink slip of his own, all while the “lazy media” “created” a “narrative” of dysfunction. The nerve.

  • mgbode

    I don’t know but I definitely would look down on such a commenter and would perhaps throw in a sarcastic joke in for good measure.

  • JNeids
  • JNeids
  • cmm13

    Forget it, he’s rolling…

  • Garry_Owen

    Aw yeah.

  • Garry_Owen

    Kumbaya, MFers.

  • RGB

    😀

  • The_Matt_Of_Akron

    The huge influx of animated GIFs doesn’t hurt either.

  • eldaveablo

    I think you nailed a lot of this, but I also think you need to give some credit where credit’s due. Haslam was sucked by Banner, but he also corrected the mistake as soon as he was aware of it. Instead, you moved right to worrying that he will not trust anyone.

    I also don’t see the problem with listening to one of the great football minds of today (Belichik). They wanted a broad, informed coaching search. Blindly follow? That would be a problem – but ultimately he chose his own guy.

  • RGB
  • RGB

    Are you trying to say we were dysfunctional?

  • RGB

    I miss The Coliseum. 🙁

  • MrCleaveland

    Here’s another interesting little nugget from MKC’s report:

    “Within about 24 hours after McDaniels pulled out of the search, he
    called to get back in, sources close to the situation told
    cleveland.com. This was contrary to a report on NFL Network that the
    Browns called McDaniels and tried to lure him back into the mix.”

    Wow, Josh wanted back in!

    Discuss.

  • Garry_Owen

    No.

  • WFNY_DP

    At least Haslam was smart/aware enough to see that the guy in charge was seemingly unhappy with everyone HE hired–which is not a recipe for any kind of long-term success or even growth toward success–and that if you can’t spot the sucker in the first 30 minutes, you’re the sucker.

  • MrCleaveland

    Okay, then I will.

    Remember all the moaning about how McDaniels was “our guy” and we couldn’t get him and everything sucks and blah blah blah? It wasn’t true.

    The media fed us a load of rainbow sherbet, as JNeids might say.

  • Garry_Owen

    But of course, all this demonstrates is how DYSFUNCTIONALLY DYSFUNCTIONAL THE FRONT OFFICE WAS IN THEIR DYSFUNCTION! THEY COULDN’T EVEN NOT SCREW UP RIGHT!

  • MrCleaveland

    Spread the word: THE MEDIA IS DYSFUNCTIONAL!!!!!

  • Toddyus

    Uh, perhaps you meant “sucked IN by Banner?”

  • eldaveablo

    I meant what now? hehehe – fixed

  • Harv 21

    worrying is what I do. That ain’t gonna change.

    I also applaud Haslam’s quick hook, as opposed to the one last month. Yesterday was my happiest Browns day in years (sad as that may be). What I can’t believe anyone would immediately interview Schiano, after the mess and bad atmosphere he just created and left in Miami, and before anyone has reason to think he’s had time to learn lessons from that.

  • Harv 21

    That quote must be too good to be true.

  • mgbode

    yes, disqus used to choke on most of them. h/t to whoever at that site figured out how to get past that issue.

  • RGB

    It is 100% true.
    You can find the rant on Youtube.
    It’s priceless.

  • Toddyus

    Much better, although we can’t rule out the possibility of your original statement…

  • scrap

    chud got screwed… banner should have had 50 lashes.. its to late now but I think they will still need a new coach

  • mgbode

    I will await the media report proclaiming the media is dysfunctional before believing any such thing.

  • Wow

    He should have been fired a month ago instead of Chud.

  • Wow

    the feeling is mutual I’m sure

  • tigersbrowns2

    good read … unbelievable , all of things that are just now coming to light. correct me if i’m wrong , but wasn’t banner more or less forced on haslam by the NFL as part of them okaying the sale to haslam … that he had to have somebody with some prior experience. ?

    i don’t think haslam liked banner or lombardi from the very beginning … funny how he already had farmer & scheiner in-house … you gotta think these are the two he wanted in there all along.

  • WFNY_DP

    “At least Jerry can justify using the Cowboys as his sandbox because he is paying for it all.”

    Minus that $325 million he bilked out of Arlington to build the Taj Mahal.

  • Foghorn Leghorn

    “Banner wanted to fire his embattled GM, and Lombardi knew it. If he didn’t know, he missed the writing on the wall.”

    Statement of fact, followed by cop out if said fact is actually just something made up. Well played MKC, well played.

  • maxfnmloans

    Winner winner, chicken dinner

    The fact that the locals are continually scooped by guys like Schefter and Glazer should be an affront to their professional pride. Instead, we get things like MKC complaining that no one will talk to her. Mmmm, okaaaaay…isn’t your job to get information? Can’t pretty much anyone read Twitter feeds?

  • Johnny

    Scott Sargent, you aren’t a good writer and your opinions are crap. It’s clear you’ve never played a sport in your life.

  • mgbode

    but we put the FUN in it 🙂

  • tigersbrowns2

    wow … kinda harsh.