After a handful of interviews and at least one reported “thanks, but no thanks,” the Cleveland Browns front office appears to be set on filling their currently vacant head coaching position with one of two men who have yet to even express interest in obtaining said position. CBS Sports’ Jason La Canfora reports that Jimmy Haslam and Joe Banner have their sights set on the man who was the first known candidate following the firing of first-year head coach Rob Chudzinski: Denver Broncos offensive coordinator Adam Gase.
In addition to Gase, the other name which remains linked to Cleveland is Auburn’s head coach and budding guru Gus Malzahn. Per La Canfora:
Team officials realizes it may be a longshot to land Malzahn, who nearly won a national title at Auburn and is very happy there, but his offensive innovation and the style of offense he runs is very much in line with what the team would like to put in place (the Browns are also very high on quarterback Johnny Manziel, sources said, who would be a perfect fit in a Malzahn offense). The Browns immediately asked to talk to Gase following their firing of Rob Chudzinski at the end of the regular season, but were informed he would not do any interviews, if at all, until after Denver’s season ends.
The interesting item comes in the way of La Canfora stating that Gase, whose Broncos offense is set to take the field against the San Diego Chargers on Sunday, may not even want to interview for the Browns job. The 35-year-old Gase will have at least one more season of a Peyton Manning-run offense that set several passing records in 2013. It is anticipated that, while the Browns are interested this season, the offensive coordinator would be a leading candidate for several positions come this time next year.
If recent history is in any way indicative of the future, it’s not far-fetched to assume one of those positions being in Cleveland.
Image via DenverBroncos.com