Mike Holmgren Confirms He Talked To Jon Gruden, Bill Cowher Before Hiring Pat Shurmur

The Cleveland Browns on Friday officially announced the hiring of former St. Louis Rams offensive coordinator Pat Shurmur as head coach. During his introductory press conference, Browns president Mike Holmgren confirmed that he talked with big names such as Jon Gruden and Bill Cowher.

Those two, however, weren't part of the final three candidates the Browns zeroed in on. Holmgren also confirmed their final three included Shurmur, Perry Fewell and Mike Mularkey. Ultimately, the Browns decided on Shurmur based partly on their familiarity with him.

GM Tom Heckert worked Shurmur in Philadelphia where the Browns head coach was then coaching Donovan McNabb.

 "Andy (Reid) and I talked about (Shurmur) a lot. The way he handled Donovan. Things he did. I knew it would come and just be a matter of time. Lucky for me it happened here."    

Shurmur's uncle, Fritz, also worked with Holmgren in Green Bay.

The Browns are hoping Shurmur's work with McNabb in Philadelphia and Sam Bradford in St. Louis will help him as the Browns develop Colt McCoy.

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