Skip to main content

John Dorsey thinks about Browns coaching search 'every day,' has 3 key characteristics in mind for best candidate

John Dorsey usually looks at bye weeks as a time to reflect. 

The Browns general manager likes to evaluate the season thus far, maybe address a few smaller deficiencies that the team typically doesn't have time to address.

This season has been decidedly unusual, though. The Browns moved on from a head coach and coordinator at the midpoint of the season, so the search for their permanent successors will command a portion of his time. He understands the magnitude of this decision and doesn't want to jeopardize it in any way,

"I think about (the coaching search) every day driving home," Dorsey said. "'Just make sure you do not mess it up' – that is what I keep telling myself. Just do not mess this thing up."

For that reason, Dorsey said in his opening statement Wednesday he will divulge few, if any, details as the search progresses, the same way he handled his choice for last year's No. 1 draft pick. But Dorsey did draw a vague outline illustrating what the Browns are looking for in a coach and answered spot questions surrounding the search. 

For starters, interim coach Gregg Williams will interview to be the permanent head coach. Dorsey said Williams has earned it, citing Williams' aptitude at steadying the franchise over the past two weeks. 

As for what he's looking for in candidates, Dorsey named three key characteristics: character, leadership and high football acumen. The Browns will not seek the assistance of a search firm because, as Dorsey put it, "We don't need that." 

He believes in his list of candidates — and let's be clear, he has a list. Dorsey said everyone in his position has a list of candidates for everything from head coach to quality control and believes that everything he doesn't know about those candidates can be hashed out during the interview process. 

"As you go through the interview process, you will be able to see what really is in his soul and his fiber," Dorsey said. "How deep of a knowledge does he have? What type of people will he surround himself with? I have been in the league for a lot of years and I know the majority of coaches, not only in the college ranks but in the professional ranks. I will know most of who he is talking about."

Whoever the Browns hire, they won't be restricted by age, prior NFL experience or gender. Dorsey said he'd hire a woman if he felt she was the best fit.

Dorsey said he will communicate with owners Dee and Jimmy Haslam about the decision, but he and his senior management team will decide who is best for the organization going forward. Dorsey said his team is a small group and would not disclose any names. But he's confident his method will produce a candidate worthy of the position.

"Rest assured," Dorsey said. "At the end of the day, this (person) will be the best candidate for the Cleveland Browns moving forward."