The Cleveland Browns introduced their new owner Jimmy Haslam to the world at a Friday afternoon press conference. An enthusiastic Haslam said that he was looking forward to getting to know fans and putting a winning team on the field. As for how he plans to get the Browns moving in the right direction, Haslam made no indication of whether or not those plans involved parting ways with team president Mike Holmgren and cleaning out the front office, according to the Cleveland Plain Dealer.
Haslam praised Holmgren and his career, calling him a "future Hall of Famer." As far as any changes in leadership, Haslam played his cards close to his vest, saying only:
"I sense there is a strong feeling here that Mike and the team have things headed in the right direction,'' he said. "I think we have to listen, learn and observe.''
Mary Kay Cabot of the Clevland Plain Deal reported on Thursday afternoon that Joe Banner, the former president of the Philadelphia Eagles, would be part of Haslam's management group, a move that many believe spells the end for Holmgren.
New owners, especially when taking over a moribund franchise like the Browns, typically bring in their own people to lead the organization. The scope and pace of changes under Haslam could be shaped by how much progress the team shows during the 2012 season. Massive organizational changes are rarely announced in an introductory press conference.
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