Browns Fire Arians, Two Others

The Browns announced today that they have fired offensive coordinator Bruce Arians, who takes the fall for the team's disappointing 5-11 season. Arians' offense was expected to be a powerhouse, but failed to perform up to expectations throughout the season. More...

The Cleveland Browns announced today that they have fired Browns offensive coordinator Bruce Arians. Also released were running backs coach Todd McNair, and quarterbacks coach Carl Smith.

Arians presided over an offensive decline this season which saw the team go from 344 points scored in 2002 to 254 in 2003. This steep decline was opposite of fan and team expectations, which anticipated an explosive offense and leaky defense this season.

Arians was the far-and-away leader for "goathorns" in yearly BerniesInsiders.com Gameballs and Goats voting, and clearly was considered to be a weak link in the coaching chain by Browns fans. Arians, however, was also victimized by a plague of  injuries, particularly along the offensive line. The team used a large number of different offensive line combinations in 2003, creating problems within a unit that typically needs a large number of repetitions to gel properly.

Arians, however, is likely to bounce back, as he has 28 years of coaching experiences that will surely prove of value to potential employers. Arians served as offensive coordinator at Mississippi State and Alabama, as well as the Browns, and was also head coach at Temple for six years (1983-1988). Arians have also served as a quarterbacks, running backs, tight end, and receivers coach during his career.

No word is available at this point about Arians replacement or that of any of the other coaches.

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