Browns fire Mangini; Vikings officially hire Frazier
The Cleveland Browns fired Eric Mangini as their coach Monday.
The move came a day after the Browns completed a 5-11 season with a 41-9 loss to the Pittsburgh Steelers. The Browns lost their final four games.
"This decision was not easy for me, and it was one into which I put a great deal of thought," team president Mike Holmgren said in a written statement released by the Browns. "Although we have made improvements this season, my responsibility is to ensure that we establish a program that will allow this team to compete at a championship level. That will continue to be our goal in everything we do. I want to thank Eric for all of his contributions to the Cleveland Browns, and wish him and his family the best of luck in the future."
Holmgren retained Mangini last offseason after taking over the franchise's football operations. But many observers around the league believed that Mangini would not be Holmgren's coach for the long term.
There has been some speculation that Holmgren might return to coaching and take over the team himself. If that doesn't happen, there also has been talk that Philadelphia Eagles offensive coordinator Marty Mornhinweg could be at or near the top of Holmgren's list of candidates.
l VIKINGS: Minnesota named Leslie Frazier its coach, removing the interim tag from his job title.
Frazier had been promoted from defensive coordinator to interim coach, and led the Vikings to three wins in six games after Brad Childress was fired in November following a 3-7 start.
l JETS: Two massage therapists sued Brett Favre, saying they lost their part-time jobs with the team after complaining about sexually suggestive text messages from the quarterback.
Claiming they were subjected to sexual harassment and job discrimination, Christina Scavo and Shannon O'Toole are seeking unspecified damages from Favre, the Jets and a team massage coordinator.
l LABOR: NFL Commissioner Roger Goodell wrote a letter to fans in which he said he knows the league "can and will reach an agreement" with the players' union.
"These are not easy negotiations, but the outcome can be positive," Goodell wrote. "If both sides give a little, everyone, including fans, will get a lot and the game will improve through innovation."
The current collective bargaining agreement between the league and the union expires in March.