Wednesday, January 9, 2008


The end-of-season changes that come in the NFL at the end of each regular season are always interesting to watch. In some cities coaches are fired (see "Baltimore"), in some coaches retire (see "Washington"), and in others there is an entire house cleaning (see "Miami"). Following the firings, it's always interesting to see the rush of NFL management to hire and extend successful coaches.

I find the situation in Cleveland to be one of the most interesting situations. Despite lucrative free agent signings and what seemly were strong draft classes, Cleveland has perennially disgraced the NFL with a team that can barely stay out of the league's cellar. This year, obviously it was a different situation with Cleveland proving to be a legitimate force and nearly making the playoffs. I stress nearly. With this mild success came a rush of NFL management to snatch up the coaches and players involved. Baltimore interviewed Rob Chudzinski (O.C.), and other teams salivated at the opportunity to snatch up surprise quarterback Derek Anderson. Prior to the season, Romeo Crennel was widely speculated to lose his job at year end, but now, with his new found mild success, he has been signed long-term to coach the Browns.

Are memories in the NFL so short? Was it not just months ago that fans of the Browns and NFL prognosticators everywhere were calling for the head of Romeo Crennel? Romeo had two years left on his deal in Cleveland, and instead of letting him play out his contract and finally earn the money he's been being paid, he has received a raise and a contract extension. It makes no sense to me.

Has Rob Chudzinski only been an O.C. for only one year? (yes, he was a tight ends coach a year ago in SD) Is that all it takes? One year of success as an O.C. and you deserve a head coaching job? It's mind boggling to me, and as I peruse the assistant coaches scattered around the league I see several people more qualified and more deserving of a head coaching job. Co-ordinators who have a proven track record of winning, who have played in Championship games, made the playoffs every year and have taken mediocre talent and turned it into contention.

But maybe that's just me. I'm just a country-boy in small town Saskatchewan, who probably doesn't know much. And heck, look at Norv Turner. He sure had a proven track record. Of losing.