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Coach Pettine: Browns Will ‘Be Built on Toughness’

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pettineCLEVELAND, Ohio — The Cleveland Browns have named Mike Pettine as the team’s new head coach.

Pettine, the Buffalo Bills’ defensive coordinator in 2013, arrived in Berea Thursday afternoon for his interview with the Browns.

The team made the announcement they’d chosen him as the new head coach just before 4 p.m. Thursday, and introduced him at a 4:45 p.m. news conference.

Pettine spent the 2009-12 seasons as the defensive coordinator for the New York Jets. According to the Browns, he helped his units to a top 10 finish in total defense in all five seasons as a defensive coordinator.

Browns owner Jimmy Haslam said at the event that Pettine is smart, tough and innovative and has what the team needs.

“I think he will be a perfect fit to our teams and our fans,” said Haslam.

Browns CEO Joe Banner addressed the length of time it took the team to find a new coach.

“I know we were exhaustive to the point that … it caused people to question and wonder,” he said. “This is a really exciting day.”

When he took to the podium, Pettine said one of his first steps as head coach will be to evaluate the roster from top to bottom. He said he will set high standards for the players.

“They’ll be graded and graded hard,” he said. “We’re going to hold those players accountable.”

Pettine said he does have candidates in mind for an offensive coordinator, but that the team’s full attention will be on finding a “great quarterback.”

He said it’s always been his dream to be a head coach, and team’s record after this past season did not cause him to question taking the job.

“There’s only 32 of these jobs in the world, and these opportunities don’t come along often,” said Pettine. “This is a bottom line business, and it’s all about winning. I just want the Cleveland fans to know we’re going to put a team on the field they can be proud of. I don’t want to win press conferences. It’s going to come down to the fall and winning games.”

In a release issued earlier in the day, Banner said:

“We wanted to be thorough from the start. And we interviewed as many people as we could. From that group, we hired the best individual for this job. Our players and fans are going to really enjoy Mike Pettine and his leadership style. We’re excited to have him out in front of our team, and we look forward to working closely with him.”

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According to the Browns, Pettine’s coaching background includes the following:

— 1988-92, Central Bucks West High School, assistant coach
— 1993-94, University of Pittsburgh, defensive graduate assistant coach
— 1995-96, William Tennent High School, head coach
— 1997-2001, North Penn High School, head coach
— 2002, Baltimore Ravens, coaching and video assistant
— 2003, Baltimore Ravens, coaching assistant/quality control coach
— 2004, Baltimore Ravens, defensive assistant
— 2005-08, Baltimore Ravens, outside linebackers coach
— 2009-12, New York Jets, defensive coordinator
— 2013, Buffalo Bills, defensive coordinator
— 2014, Cleveland Browns, head coach

Pettine replaces Rob Chudzinski, who was fired on Dec. 29.

Stay with FOX8 and FOX8.com for the latest developments on the Browns coaching search.
Darcie Loreno January 23, 20144:47 pm

News conference begins

Darcie Loreno January 23, 20144:48 pm

Browns Owner Jimmy Haslam: Mike brings exactly what we think we need for our organization. He’s smart…innovating…he’s tough. I think he will be a perfect fit for our team and our fans.

Darcie Loreno January 23, 20144:49 pm

Browns CEO Joe Banner: This is a really exciting day. I know we were exhaustive to the point that … it caused people to question and wonder.

Darcie Loreno January 23, 20144:49 pm

Banner said the Browns interviewed Pettine three times

Darcie Loreno January 23, 20144:52 pm

Pettine: The biggest reason I’m here…my biggest influence is my dad.

Darcie Loreno January 23, 20144:52 pm

Pettine: I’ve worked for some great coaches, played for some great coaches…by my roots go back to my dad.

Darcie Loreno January 23, 20144:53 pm

Pettine: My vision here in Cleveland…to compete in the AFC north you have to be willing to bloody your nose a little bit. This team is going to be built on toughness. As important, is mental toughness.

Darcie Loreno January 23, 20144:54 pm

Pettine: We’re going to set high standards for our players. They’ll be graded, and graded hard. We’re going to hold those players accountable.

Darcie Loreno January 23, 20144:55 pm

Pettine said one of his first steps will be to evaluate the roster from top to bottom

Darcie Loreno January 23, 20144:55 pm

Darcie Loreno January 23, 20144:56 pm

Pettine on taking a job with the Browns despite it’s record : I didn’t want to back away from a job…because of a lack of security.

Darcie Loreno January 23, 20144:56 pm

Pettine on finding the right offensive coordinator: I do have guys in mind…

Darcie Loreno January 23, 20144:57 pm

Pettine on being a first-time head coach and being in the spotlight: I do not feel comfortable at all…the sooner I can get off this stage…the better. I have…been involved in some of those things, and … some of the places I’ve been where they’ve given us the opportunity to be in front of the media, that’s been helpful.

Darcie Loreno January 23, 20144:58 pm

Pettine said he was not surprised to hear from the Browns about being the team’s head coach. Pettine said he always wanted to be a head coach, although he never actively pursued it.

Darcie Loreno January 23, 20144:59 pm

Pettine on if he was the team’s first choice: That to me is not an issue. It’s been my life long dream to be an NFL head coach.

Darcie Loreno January 23, 20145:00 pm

Pettine on discussions of next quarterback during interviews: To win in this league, you have to have a great quarterback, and that’s something we’re…going to put our full attention on.

Darcie Loreno January 23, 20145:00 pm

Pettine: There is some definite talent here, young talent here, and we have the ability to keep that talent here.

Darcie Loreno January 23, 20145:02 pm

Pettine on perception of the job of Browns’ head coach and Haslam being under investigation: Just confidence in the information I gathered in how committed this franchise is to winning…and the confidence in myself. There’s only 32 of these jobs in the world and these opportunities don’t come along often. I looked at the situation as, when you put all the factors together, that this franchise…is in the position to win.

Darcie Loreno January 23, 20145:06 pm

Pettine on fans and their faith in the team after last season’s losses: I have belief in the staff we’re going to build, the players an a belief in the system that will be run here. The standards will be high, the players will be held accountable. That formula has been used in other (situations) and (it’s proven successful.)

Darcie Loreno January 23, 20145:07 pm

Pettine: This is a bottom line business, and it’s all about winning. I just want the Cleveland fans to know we’re going to put a team on the field they can be proud of. I don’t want to win press conferences. It’s going to come down to the fall and winning games.

Darcie Loreno January 23, 20145:09 pm

Press conference concludes

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