CLEVELAND (WCMH/AP) — The Cleveland Browns have fired head coach Mike Pettine and general manager Ray Farmer following a 3-13 season.
Pettine went 10-22 in two years, dropping 18 of his final 21 games after a promising 7-4 start in 2014. The Browns announced Pettine’s firing – and the dismissal of general manager Ray Farmer – shortly after a 28-12 home loss to the rival Pittsburgh Steelers, who wiggled into the AFC playoffs.
Pettine’s job security had been in doubt for months, and not even owner Jimmy Haslam’s vow at the start of training camp not to “blow things up” could stop another regime change in Cleveland.
Pettine was the team’s seventh full-time coach since 1999.
A former defensive coordinator, Pettine’s ouster can be partly linked to the performance of his defense, which ranked at or near the bottom in the league in nearly every statistical category.
NFL Media Insider Ian Rapoport reported Sunday that Farmer met with ownership before Cleveland’s loss and was relieved of his duties. Rapoport reported Sunday morning that the team will fire coach Mike Pettine.
An Associated Press report confirmed that Farmer, promoted by owner Jimmy Haslam in 2014, was relieved Sunday after the Browns lost at home to the Pittsburgh Steelers. They confirmed the report through a person who spoke on condition of anonymity because the team has not announced the move.
Farmer’s drafts doomed him. He selected quarterback Johnny Manziel and cornerback Justin Gilbert in the first round last year, but both have been major disappointments. Manziel has shown some progress in his two seasons, but continues to be a distraction. Gilbert spent most of the season inactive on game days.
Farmer was suspended by the NFL for the first four games this season for texting to the sideline during 2014 games.
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