Report: Browns name Whipple to coach QBs, Davis to tutor LBs

The Cleveland Browns have hired former University of Miami offensive coordinator Mark Whipple as quarterbacks coach and former Arizona Cardinals defensive coordinator Bill Davis as linebackers coach, *The Plain Dealer* reported Monday, citing a league source.

Whipple will work under new Browns coach Pat Shurmur to tutor second-year starting quarterback Colt McCoy.

With Whipple's addition and Shurmur set to call Cleveland's offensive plays next season, it's possible the team will not hire a coordinator, according to the newspaper.

Whipple served under Bill Cowher as the Pittsburgh Steelers' quarterbacks coach from 2004 to 2006, helping guide Ben Roethlisberger to a 13-0 starting record as a rookie in 2004. Whipple was let go by Mike Tomlin before the 2007 season and served as an offensive assistant with the Philadelphia Eagles from 2007 to 2008.

Whipple has 16 seasons of head-coaching experience at the collegiate level, with an overall record of 121-59 at the University of Massachusetts, Brown and New Haven. He was released as Miami's offensive coordinator with the firing of Randy Shannon after the 2010 season.

A candidate for the University of Connecticut's head-coaching job, Whipple was passed over in favor of Paul Pasqualoni earlier this month. Whipple told *The Republican*, on Jan. 17: "I'm doing well. I just have to move forward."

Whipple now will oversee the development of McCoy, who threw for 1,576 yards and six touchdowns with nine interceptions in eight starts this past season.

Davis was named coordinator before the 2009 season, taking over for Clancy Pendergast. Arizona went 10-6 in Davis' first season as coordinator, with the team fifth in the NFL in fewest points allowed in 2009. But the Cardinals allowed 90 points in two playoff games, and Davis knew the pressure was on this season. The departure of big-play linebacker Karlos Dansby via free agency didn't help.

Arizona wound up 29th out of 32 teams in total defense, 22nd in passing defense and 30th in run defense in 2010. Only the Denver Broncos (471) and Dallas Cowboys (436) allowed more points than the Cardinals' 434.

Davis has been an NFL assistant coach for 19 seasons with eight teams -- in chronological order, the Steelers, Carolina Panthers, Browns, Green Bay Packers, Atlanta Falcons, New York Giants, San Francisco 49ers and Cardinals.

Davis served on the Browns' staff in 1999 under coach Chris Palmer.

*The Plain Dealer* also reported Monday that defensive line coach Bryan Cox is on his way out and will be replaced by Dwaine Board, who coached the position under Mike Holmgren with the Seattle Seahawks from 2003 to 2008. Board also served as an assistant with the San Francisco 49ers when Holmgren, now the Browns' president, was that team's offensive coordinator.

The Associated Press contributed to this report.

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