The Browns are putting the offense in the hands of a coach who two years ago was an offensive line coach and whose only experience calling plays was in the preseason four years ago.
Jeff Davidson was named offensive coordinator by Coach Romeo Crennel Tuesday, a move that came as no surprise. Most accounts had Maurice Carthon being fired Monday. Crennel said Carthon resigned.
All that really matters is someone else will be calling the plays Sunday when the Browns, 1-5, host the Jets.
"Jeff has a background in the passing game and a background in the running game," Crennel said. "I feel comfortable in naming Jeff offensive coordinator). I'm confident he will give his best effort to organizing this thing and trying to be creative and resourceful in using the talent we have on this team."
Davidson played on the offensive line in the late 1980s and was drafted by the Broncos in 1990. He jumped into coaching with the Saints in 1995 and stayed there for three years before being hired as an assistant line coach by the patriots in 1998. He was one of five assistants retained when Bill Belichick was named the Patriots head coach in 2000.
Davidson takes over an offense ranked dead last in the NFL They are averaging 14.6 points a game despite the presence of Kellen Winslow Jr., Braylon Edwards, Joe Jurevicius and Reuben Droughns. The negative factors are the offensive line leaks and Charlie Frye has only 11 starts in the NFL.
"I'm hopeful this thing will get turned around," Crennel said during a press conference Tuesday. "I've always said I thought we had talent and ability here. With different leadership, we'll see how that works out.
"I don't think you can realistically expect it to manifest itself in a wide open offense overnight. If you change all the offense and all the plays, you're starting from scratch. I think what he'll do is pick the things he likes and maybe dress them up here and there and add a little bit each week and see how that works out."
Crennel did not try talking Carthon out of quitting nor did he offer him another job on his coaching staff.
"I think Maurice has a tough mind," Crennel said. "But I think because of what we've seen over the years in the NFL, in talking about it, I think this situation probably might get worse before it gets better. He was always going to be the guy shots were going to be taken at. Even if we got better for a game or two, and if it didn't get better for that third game, he was always going to be the guy at fault."