Cleveland Browns could be sold by August


The NFL world, not to mention Cleveland Browns coach Pat Shurmur, was stunned to learn Friday that the Browns are for sale. It sounds like owner Randy Lerner is in his final days as the team's owner. and NFL Network's Michael Lombardi reports that the Browns sale to businessman Jimmy Haslam could be finalized as early as August, because Haslam, a minority owner of the Pittsburgh Steelers, has been approved already by the NFL as an owner.

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Shurmur addressed the news to his staff and team, but seemed stunned when he first addressed the media Friday.

"I'm not going to answer any questions regarding today's news. If you have football questions I'll be happy to answer them," Shurmur said.

Pat McManamon of FoxSportsOhio said Shurmur's tone changed Saturday.

"Shurmur was a different man from 24 hours previous, when the news of the sale seemed to blindside him. While anger came across Friday, his personality came across on Saturday," McManamon wrote.

When asked what he learned from his experience coaching the Browns, Bill Belichick often jokes he learned not to coach a team when it's leaving town. The same is surely true for a change in ownership.

Shurmur will keep his job heading into this season, but his job just got much tougher. President Mike Holmgren admits that his status is up in the air.'s Mike Florio reports that his contract is a closely guarded state secret. No one seems to know what will happen to Holmgren, but it wouldn't be a surprise if he left the scene quickly after Haslam takes over.

At this point, very little would surprise us regarding the Browns' immediate future. (Besides a playoff appearance.)