After interviewing as many as eight different candidates to be their next head coach, the Browns have confirmed that Panthers offensive coordinator Rob Chudzinski will be the Browns 14th head coach in team history. He will also be the team’s sixth coach since the team returned in 1999.
This will be the third time Chudzinski joins the Browns staff. He is a native of Toledo and was a Browns fan growing up. He was the Browns offensive coordinator under Romeo Crennel and was calling the plays in the 2007 season when the Browns were 10-6 and Derek Anderson went to the Pro Bowl. Chudzinski was also with the Browns during the Butch Davis era in 2004 as the tight ends coach.
Chudzinski worked with Cam Newton the past two seasons with the Panthers. It is been rumored that former Chargers coach Norv Turner will join Chudzinski as the offensive coordinator. It is believed that Chudzinski will switch the Browns from a 4-3 defense to the 3-4.
The Browns did not confirm any of the potential coaches that they interviewed, but numerous reports said they interviewed former Cardinals coach Ken Whisenhunt earlier Thursday. Reports also said they were going to bring Bengals defensive coordinator Mike Zimmer back for a second interview.
It was believed that Oregon coach Chip Kelly was the Browns first choice, but he opted to stay at Oregon. The Browns reportedly also interviewed Penn State coach Bill O’Brien and former Syracuse coach Doug Marrone. Besides Whisenhunt, the Browns interviewed Cardinals defensive coordinator Ray Horton. Montreal Alouettes head coach Marc Trestman was also a candidate. Marrone was hired by the Bills and O’Brien elected to stay at Penn State.
The Browns are planning on introducing Chudzinski as the team’s coach Friday at 11 am.