Things are getting weird in Cleveland.
New England Patriots offensive coordinator Josh McDaniels has withdrawn his interest in the Browns' coaching vacancy, NFL Media Insider Ian Rapoport reported Wednesday on NFL Network's "Around the League Live." ESPN's Adam Schefter first reported the news.
Seen by many as the apple of Browns general manager Michael Lombardi's eye, McDaniels interviewed for the job over the weekend.
NFL Media Insider Ian Rapoport reported beforehand that New England's play-caller was no sure bet to accept the role, even if it was offered to him. The father of four young children, McDaniels reportedly was motivated to return to the Patriots in 2012 to create stability for his family after two years in Denver and a single season with the St. Louis Rams. He's being paid well by the Patriots and in no rush to move on -- at least not to Cleveland.
With Browns owner Jimmy Haslam, CEO Joe Banner and Lombardi calling the shots, the team's next coach won't have the opportunity to mold his own roster. Rob Chudzinski -- fired after one season -- embraced that challenge, but this tangled and shrouded front-office structure is ripe to scare off big-name candidates.
If the Browns were hoping to make a splash with this hire, it's anyone's guess what they're thinking at this stage. After losing out on Chip Kelly a season ago -- and having to sell their second choice to a badgered fan base -- the spin job this time is bound to be fierce.