Browns' coach search needs to play out


You've got questions and comments that you submit to the Browns' official Facebook and Twitter pages, and Here's what I have to say about what you have to say: 

Justin says: "It's obvious to the fan base the front office will be settling for somebody to be head coach other than their first choice. 2013?"

I say: I honestly don't know how you or anyone else could reach such a conclusion, Justin.

For one thing, no one within the team has revealed, publicly or privately, the identity of the "first choice," so I'm not sure how you have that figured out.

Two, if you go by "league sources" quoted in media reports, which have been the sole so-called providers of information since the head-coaching search began on Dec. 29, the only "first choice" universally referenced is Denver Broncos offensive coordinator Adam Gase. And he's busy helping his team prepare for the AFC Championship Game, and could still be busy through the Super Bowl on Feb. 2. He also has yet to accept an interview with the Browns or any other team with a head-coach opening. Consequently, he remains a distinct possibility for the Browns' job.

Anyone who believes that New England Patriots offensive coordinator Josh McDaniels was the Browns' "first choice" and that he chose, instead, to pull himself out of contention, is following a misleading path. By every indication I've received, McDaniels chose to eliminate himself from contention for the job once the Browns informed him that he was not their leading candidate. Regardless, he, too, has unfinished work in preparing the Patriots to face the Broncos in the AFC title game, and he, too, could still be busy through the Super Bowl.

Dan Quinn, the Seattle Seahawks' defensive coordinator, is yet another reported Browns candidate who will be tied up for at least one more game, the NFC title showdown with San Francisco.

So if the Browns are waiting until the respective seasons of these playoff teams end to make their hire, what, exactly, is wrong with that? And if, instead, they go with someone currently available, then who is to say that that person isn't the one they "really" want?

I'm as impatient as anyone else with this process, but I think the best approach is to allow it to play out and then judge from there.

BR says: "Jimmy Haslam should question Joe Banner's fascination with offensive coordinators. The talent of Browns is on defense. Sean McDermott, the Panthers' defensive coordinator, or Dan Quinn, the Seahawks' DC, would shape them up."

I say: You make a solid point regarding the Browns' most talented players being on defense and the team needs to do all it can to reverse the trend of the collapses that routinely happened on that side of the ball through about the final two thirds of the season.

However, I don't think it's accurate to characterize the head-coaching search as being a case of Banner's "fascination" with a specific type of candidate and the suggestion that Haslam either doesn't have his own thoughts or doesn't agree with the coaches being considered.

If media reports are accurate, the Browns have, in fact, interviewed at least two defensive coordinators: Seattle's Dan Quinn and Arizona's Todd Bowles.

At the same time, I have no problem whatsoever with their pursuit – if, in fact, that is the case – of an offensive-rooted head coach. I believe offense is the area in greatest need of repair, beginning with the quarterback spot. And with the likelihood the Browns will invest a high draft pick in a quarterback, I think it makes sense to have someone who will excel at leading that player's development and have strong and progressive ideas of how to put together a dynamic passing attack.

It's entirely possible that that person could come in the form of an offensive coordinator working for a head coach with a defensive background, but I think the chances of that happening are greater if the head coach is an offensive/passing/quarterbacking guru.

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