by Aaron Wilson
January 23, 02014
The Cleveland Browns have hired Buffalo Bills defensive coordinator Mike Pettine as their new head coach.
Pettine is a former New York Jets defensive coordinator and Ravens outside linebackers coach. Pettine has helped his units to a top 10 finish in total defense in all five of his seasons as a defensive coordinator.
“We are thrilled to announce Mike Pettine as the new head coach of the Cleveland Browns,” Browns owner Jimmy Haslam said. “Mike is the epitome of what we want the Browns to be -- tough, aggressive and innovative -- with a blue-collar, team-first mentality. He knows what's necessary to beat teams in the AFC North. Most importantly, Mike has repeatedly shown the ability to lead his players to consistent improvement and success, clearly what we are striving for as he leads the Cleveland Browns moving forward.”
“We wanted to be thorough from the start, and we interviewed as many people as we could," Browns CEO Joe Banner said. "From that group, we hired the best individual for this job. Our players and fans are going to really enjoy Mike Pettine and his leadership style. We’re excited to have him out in front of our team, and we look forward to working closely with him.”
During his season in Buffalo, Pettine implemented an aggressive defense that set a franchise record with 57 sacks, second-most in the NFL in 2013 after finishing tied for 18th in the league with 36 in 2012. Buffalo was the only team to have three players record double-digits sacks, with DE Mario Williams leading the team and finishing fourth in the NFL with 13.