It was exactly 13 months ago when the Browns topped the Bengals to gain sole possession of the AFC North. Since then, the team has gone 3-16, including losses in 15 of their past 17 games. Predictably, some pundits have questioned Mike Pettine‘s job security.
The head coach added some fuel to the fire following Sunday’s loss to the Bengals, telling Mary Kay Cabot of Cleveland.com that he hasn’t received any assurances from owner Jimmy Haslam regarding his job status for the rest of the season.
“We haven’t had those discussions,” Pettine said. “Jimmy and I had good conversations. We talk every week. Frankly, there’s a lot of football left to be played. We’re evaluated every day, whether we’re evaluating ourselves or whether it is coming from him.
“We’re just going to fall back on what we know how to do. We’re going to come in every day, prepare relentlessly like we do, we’re going to coach our players hard and we will see what happens.”
As Cabot points out, Haslam previously said that he wouldn’t “blow things up” following this season. However, those statements followed a promising 7-9 campaign, and things haven’t gone so well for the organization since. Embattled quarterback Johnny Manziel has had a tumultuous sophomore campaign, and the Browns have gotten little production from their recent first-round picks.
The writer believes Haslam will let Pettine stick around for the rest of the season, although there’s no guarantee beyond that. The owner has already fired a pair of coaches in Pat Shurmur and Rob Chudzinski.