Hunt said Pioli was "head and shoulders above everyone else we talked to."
"I went into the interview with him thinking there's no way this individual can live up to the hype surrounding him," Hunt said. "At the end of the interview, I was like, `Wow!' Not only did he live up to it, he exceeded it."
On Wednesday, Pioli will fly to Dallas to meet with Hunt to sign a contract. After Dallas, Pioli will fly to Kansas City with his new boss. While in Kansas City, he will meet with the Chiefs staff. There are about 180 employees who keep the organization running.
I hear some of the candidates for the KC front office position are being told today they are no longer candidates — either a sign that Scott Pioli is coming or they are no longer in the mix.
The Browns will interview Kokinis on Sunday, the day after the Ravens play the Titans in Tennessee in a second-round playoff game. If the Ravens win, the Browns will still be able to interview Kokinis, but they would have to wait to hire him until the Ravens' playoff race ends.
Reports that Patriots vice president of player personnel Scott Pioli turned the Browns off with his "outrageous demands" were absolutely false, multiple sources close to the situation told The Plain Dealer on Wednesday.
Browns owner Randy Lerner spent about 10 hours talking to Pioli over the past week and the dialogue was positive, the source said. It was also described by one source as more "exploratory" than actual negotiating.
Bucs director of pro personnel Mark Dominik, who grew up in Kansas and graduated from KU, has emerged as a candidate for the Chiefs G.M. position. Dominik has spent the last 14 years in the Bucs' pro scouting department.
What we can tell you is this: the Chiefs aren’t just sitting back waiting for Pioli. They’ve conducted several interviews with other candidates this weekend.
The NFL's hiring and firing season can be a confusing swirl of speculation, conjecture and misinformation, but sometimes a marriage of team and candidate just makes too much sense not to happen. Like Scott Pioli becoming the next general manager of the Cleveland Browns.
The Chiefs have also received permission from the Patriots to speak with Pioli, but the details of a meeting are unknown.
"I had a conversation with the people in Kansas City but it was merely as ‘What do you think the situation is?’" Schottenheimer said. "Because I have a very long-standing relationship, I have great respect for Clark [Hunt] and others in that organization. And so we had some dialogue and I told them what I felt, how I felt about it. That was all."