Sunday night was the last time Mike Holmgren made a trip to the Cleveland Browns’ locker room. The former Cleveland Browns president who has been in a lame-duck status for the last several weeks wasn’t expected to hang beyond the current season. And there was always the possibility of an early departure. Mike Holmgren took action on the second option, and is leaving the Cleveland Browns immediately.
Mike Holmgren’s stint with the Cleveland Browns was full of disappointments after he was hired by former owner Randy Lerner with the hopes of fixing the organization. The 64-year-old Mike Holmgren preached of patience in his first year as the Cleveland Browns started a rebuilding process. Meanwhile fans started expressing frustrations after several NFL teams went from worse to playoffs contention each year.
He may be a Hall of Famer coach but Mike Holmgren has been a disappointment as a franchise executive. The Cleveland Browns were looking for an offensive genius in Mike Holmgren but he only led the team to three losing seasons and brought them a coach who looked overwhelmed by the task ahead.
"Any time you don't reach your goals in this business on one hand then, yeah. Having said that, though, I really can feel good, and the guys who have been here,” said Mike Holmgren, “can feel good about what the future holds. But time will tell."
The Cleveland Browns have been 12-31 under Mike Holmgren and it now appears that his early season playoffs contention claims too were all for nothing. After all, Mike Holmgren has shown a lack of initiative towards fixing problems at the offensive side of the ball. Mike Holmgren really can’t expect to give rookie (and franchise quarterback) Brandon Weeden a fighting chance without surrounding him by an assortment of weapons to bring some excitement in the game.
In short, Mike Holmgren will remembered keeping the Cleveland Browns on a low-key basis during the free agency, failing to trade up in the drafts for the remarkable rookie quarterback Robert Griffin III and for not firing Eric Mangini , who’s been equally disappointing.
Mike Holmgren is prematurely exiting in the third-year of a five-year contract. However, he never intended to stay long after the Cleveland Browns were sold to new owner Jimmy Haslam, and was at a loss regarding his role with the organization after Joe Banner was hired the new CEO. Mike Holmgren only planned to stay long enough to endure the easy transition of the old administration to the new. Now, the “baton” has been passed on.
Although, he previously hinted at hoping to return make a return to coaching, Mike Holmgren’s immediate future is still full of uncertainties.
"I honestly don't know if I'm going to go back to work immediately or not and I don't know if it's going to be in football,” expressed Mike Holmgren.
Though, Mike Holmgren’s only salvation may come from last night’s game after the Cleveland Browns defeated the Pittsburgh Steelers 20-14, for the first time since December 2009.