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Shurmur, Heckert fired in Cleveland

 
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The Cleveland Browns changed ownership and management earlier this year.

The franchise will now be replacing its head coach and general manager as well.

Pat Shurmur was fired Monday morning following the completion of a 5-11 season, FOXSports.com NFL insider Jay Glazer has learned.

Browns general manager Tom Heckert Jr. also was told he is being fired, Glazer reports.

The futures of Shurmur and Heckert came into question as soon as Jimmy Haslam purchased the Browns from Randy Lerner during the preseason. Haslam hired former Philadelphia Eagles president Joe Banner to oversee the team and replace Mike Holmgren, who named Heckert as his general manager in 2010. Shurmur was hired as head coach the following year.

Banner, Heckert and Shurmur were all with the Philadelphia Eagles during the previous decade. Those ties, though, didn’t help Shurmur or Heckert keep their jobs as Banner seeks to place his own fingerprints on the Browns.

NFL Network analyst Mike Lombardi will likely draw strong consideration for the general manager position. Lombardi worked in Cleveland’s front office from 1987 until the franchise moved to Baltimore following the 1995 season.

The Browns were 4-12 in Shurmur’s first season but began showing improvement in 2012 while fielding one of the NFL’s youngest teams. The growth of three rookies – quarterback Brandon Weeden, running back Trent Richardson and wide receiver Josh Gordon – had Shurmur bullish about Cleveland’s future.

With Shurmur and Heckert out, Cleveland could be in the market again at quarterback. Shurmur thought Weeden could develop into a quality passer. Weeden, though, is 29 years old and struggled during his rookie campaign.

Cleveland’s next head coach will be the sixth different hire since the franchise resumed play in 1999. The Browns have yet to win a playoff game since their return and posted only two winning records in 14 seasons.

Shurmur previously served as offensive coordinator for the St. Louis Rams. Considered one of the NFL’s top offensive minds, Shurmur should be in high demand for coordinator positions around the league.

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