Holmgren bids farewell to Cleveland

Posted Nov 26, 2012

In his final press conference with the Cleveland media, Mike Holmgren said Cleveland was a great football town.

Mike Holmgren confirmed Monday that this will be his last week with the Cleveland Browns organization.

In his nearly three years with the Browns in the role as president, Holmgren said he gained an appreciation for how passionate the city is about the team and how much fans the team enjoy every success on the field.

“This is a great football city,” Holmgren said. “All of the things I said in my opening press conference came true in that way and I fully expect the team to do great things in the future. Those who have been covering the team for a long time can really enjoy it.”

Since the October NFL Owners’ Meetings, Holmgren has worked in concert with the new owner, Jimmy Haslam, and Chief Executive Officer, Joe Banner, to help the organization transition from the ownership change to Haslam from Randy Lerner.

“He was just incredibly helpful and professional and supportive,” Banner said. “It was fascinating and helpful to understand everything from his theories about an organization to his coaching philosophies to his evaluation of this team and this staff to his own theories to the role that people like Jimmy and I can play best in supporting a coach and helping an organization be successful.

“I’m really appreciative of the time we had together. I think it helped me. I learned a lot through it. We all wish him well. He’s certainly one of the icons and great figures in this game really, over the last couple decades.”

Under Holmgren, the Browns selected 15 players who have started games for the team this year, including back-to-back All-Rookie team performers in defensive backs Joe Haden and T.J. Ward (2010), as well as defensive linemen Phil Taylor and Jabaal Sheard (2011).

“When I watch the Cleveland Browns play on television in the future, I’ll take great pride when they do well,” Holmgren said. “I’ll feel good about that. I’ll feel good for the players. I’ll feel good for the coaches, the organization and the people because I was here. When I went to Green Bay, I was a California kid. You have no idea what it’s like there until you work there. You think you do, but you don’t and it’s the same thing here. I am very thankful that I got this opportunity.”

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