With the Chiefs and Browns the top candidates to land Patriots VP of Personnel Scott Pioli, one team is going all in.
Browns' owner Randy Lerner reportedly met with Pioli yesterday. The Cleveland Plain Dealer has the scoop:
Club owner Randy Lerner made his pitch, and Pioli countered. According to one source, some within the Browns organization feel Pioli made demands so high that perhaps he really doesn’t want to leave the Patriots nest.
Apparently, some agreement IS on the table and Pioli has to decide TODAY what he wants to do or the Browns will move on to Falcons President Rich McKay
Should Pioli spurn Cleveland’s offer, there are still a few more jobs potentially in the offing. Kansas City is one, and Pioli’s on the short list there. The Chiefs have also asked permission to speak with him.
I've been worried that this process will take several more weeks but IF Pioli truly wants a GM job of his own, and IF he turns down the Browns' offer, then the Chiefs should be in the lead to land him.
However, the report that Pioli countered with a ridiculous asking price worries me. The Chiefs have been viewed as a frugal franchise for quite some time. Combine that with this report from the Cleveland Plain Dealer yesterday:
According to the source, Lerner was not pleased when former Pittsburgh Steelers coach Bill Cowher spurned his advances so he is prepared to make what was described as “a huge” financial offer to Pioli. The offer would include not only millions but, more importantly, full control of the organization and the funds necessary to bring in Pioli’s first choice as head coach, Iowa’s Kirk Ferentz, or perhaps his longtime friend Eric Mangini.
So, if Pioli turned down a "huge" offer from the Browns, what will the Chiefs do? Hopefully Clark Hunt is changing the tune in Kansas City.
UPDATE: The Cleveland Plain Dealer is refuting the Boston Herald report that the Browns demanded an answer today:
Patriots Vice President Scott Pioli is not on a deadline to give the Browns an answer Thursday on their general manager job, a league source with knowledge of the negotiations told the Plain Dealer Thursday. The Boston Herald reported late Wednesday that the Browns parted ways with Pioli on Wednesday with no agreement in place, but with a mandate to make his decision by Thursday.
For a Browns perspective on all this, check out Dawgs By Nature.