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4. Rob Chudzinksi/Browns

Predecessor: Pat Shurmur

Others interviewed: The biggest name was Oregon’s Chip Kelly. He spurned the team’s interest and ultimately went to Philadelphia. The Browns refocused their search and chose Chudzinski, who was Carolina’s offensive coordinator the past two seasons.

Why Chudzinski?: Some Browns fans may be asking themselves the same question because of the belief that new team owner Jimmy Haslam would make a Bill Cowher/Jon Gruden/Brian Kelly/Nick Saban-sized splash with his first head coaching hire. Instead, Haslam is trusting that Browns president Joe Banner struck gold with a far-less ballyhooed name once again like he did in Philadelphia with Andy Reid in 1999. Chudzinski was able to deliver a quality staff with Turner (offense) and Ray Horton (defense) as his coordinators.

Biggest philosophical change: The Browns will switch from the West Coast-style scheme utilized by Shurmur and offensive coordinator Brad Childress to the Joe Gibbs/Don Coryell-inspired attack that Turner ran in San Diego. Running back Trent Richardson will remain the offensive focal point. The defense will also get transformed with the Browns shifting to a 3-4 under Horton.

Most pressing task: Determining whether Brandon Weeden is the quarterback whom the offense should be built around. It’s public knowledge that new general manager Mike Lombardi wasn’t a big Weeden fan from when he was serving as an NFL Network analyst.

Outlook: The Browns are better off than two years ago when Shurmur first arrived but have a ways to go before being even the third best team in a division that features Baltimore, Cincinnati and Pittsburgh.

(AP Photo)

Courtesy of

The opinions expressed are solely those of the author and do not necessarily reflect the views of Comcast.

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