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EXCLUSIVE: Assisting Mangini?
--If the rumors floating around the league have any semblance of truth to them, current Browns offensive coordinator Rob Chudzinski should be very concerned about his future in Cleveland. Confirming reports which hit the New York media last night, we've heard twice in the last 24 hours that, if Eric Mangini becomes the new Browns head coach, he will want to bring Bill Callahan along with him as his offensive coordinator. Currently the Jets' offensive line coach, Callahan is under contract with the Jets and the club doesn't necessarily have to allow him to leave even as the move to coordinator would be considered a "promotion". Callahan and Mangini, a source said, spoke late last week about a future pairing. There is no word from any Jets sources as to whether or not they would allow Callahan to bolt from under his contract. --Mangini has also spoken with at least two other members of his former coaching staff in New York about joining him in Cleveland should he land the job. We have yet to learn the names of those two coaches -- one source refused to confirm or deny that Jets quarterback coach Brian Daboll was one of them -- as most, if not all, the assistants still remaining in New York are under contract. --Another name being linked to Mangini's potential coaching staff is Scott O'Brien. The 51-year-old special teams coach worked with Mangini in Cleveland during Bill Belichick's run here in the early 90's and has spoken with Mangini at least twice in the last week. O'Brien has spent the past two seasons in Denver as their special teams coordinators, but is available as the Broncos gave their assistant coaches permission to seek other jobs following the firing of Mike Shanahan. --Even though an agreement seems less likely with each passing day, the lines of communication remain open between Cleveland Browns owner Randy Lerner and New England Patriots vice president of player personnel Scott Pioli, a source with knowledge of the situation said. What's unclear at this time, the source said, is the extent to which the talks have continued. --A source close to Tom Heckert tells The OBR that the Philadelphia Eagles general manager is "tentatively" scheduled to meet with the Browns either this coming Friday or Saturday. There is no word yet on an exact location for interview, although there's a good chance it will take place in New York City. --As an aside to the above situation, Heckert, Eagles head coach Andy Reid and two candidates who've already interviewed for the Browns' coaching vacancy -- Steve Spagnuolo and Josh McDaniels -- share the same agent, Bob LaMonte. While it may be apropos of nothing, it's certainly a very interesting dynamic nonetheless. --Heckert and Spagnuolo worked together for six years with the Eagles earlier this decade, and have remained close even after Spagnuolo left to become the New York Giants' defensive coordinator. As The OBR reported last week, Spagnuolo "wowed" the Browns brass during his interview, so Heckert's name being officially tossed into the mix is an interesting development to say the least. --"The Browns are doing themselves a disservice" by not interviewing Raheem Morris, one NFC South executive told The OBR recently. The 32-year-old Tampa Bay Buccaneers defensive coordinator has already interviewed for the Denver Broncos' vacancy, and is also reportedly drawing the interest of the St. Louis Rams. As of late Tuesday afternoon, a source said, the Browns had not yet asked for permission to speak to Morris.
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