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Browns hire several assistant coaches

By Nate Ulrich Published: January 31, 2011

Updated at 6:19 p.m. with official announcements from the Browns

The Browns have hired the following four men to serve as assistants on Pat Shurmur's coaching staff: former University of Miami offensive coordinator Mark Whipple (quarterbacks coach), former Arizona Cardinals defensive coordinator Bill Davis (linebackers coach), former Oakland Raiders defensive line coach Dwaine Board (defensive line coach) and former Cardinals wide receivers coach Mike Wilson (wide receivers coach).

The team announced the moves Monday evening.

Shurmur has said he will call the offense's plays at least to start the season. Shurmur's control coupled with the hiring of Whipple suggests the Browns might not fill their offensive coordinator vacancy.

Whipple, 53, spent the past two seasons as an assistant head coach, offensive coordinator and quarterbacks coach for the Hurricanes. He was fired after the 2010 season.

Before his stint in Miami, Whipple, pictured left, was the quarterbacks coach for the Pittsburgh Steelers (2004-06) and an offensive assistant for the Philadelphia Eagles (2008).

Davis, 45, was recently fired by the Cardinals after they finished with a record of 5-11 and their defense ranked 29th out of the 32 teams in the NFL.

He served as the Cardinals' defensive coordinator for the past two seasons. Before joining the Cardinals as a linebackers coach in 2007, Davis, a Youngstown native, was the defensive coordinator for the San Francisco 49ers (2005-06). He has been an assistant coach in the NFL for 19 years, including one season as the Browns' linebackers coach (1999).

Board, who played in the NFL for 10 years, spent the 2009 season as the defensive line coach of the Oakland Raiders. Before joining the Raiders, he spent six seasons  as the defensive line coach of the Seattle Seahawks (2003-08). Board, 54, started his NFL coaching career in 1990 as a defensive line assistant with the San Francisco 49ers. He will replace Bryan Cox.

Wilson, who played in the NFL for 10 years, spent the past two seasons as the wide receivers coach of the Las Vegas Locomotives of the UFL. Before that, Wilson, 52, spent three seasons (2004-06) with the Cardinals, for whom he coached tight ends (2004) and wide receivers (2005-06). He also served as a wide receivers coach for the University of Southern California (1997-99) and the Raiders (1995-96). He will replace George McDonald, who took the same job with the Miami Hurricanes.

All four coaches have connections to the Browns.

Davis' father, Bill, was the Browns' vice president of player personnel for six years during the 1980s, when he worked closely with Tom Heckert Sr., the father of the Browns' current general manager. Davis, a former quarterback at the University of Cincinnati, started his coaching career as a graduate assistant at Michigan State University (1990-91). Shurmur, 45, coached tight ends, special teams and offensive line for MSU during the same time.

Whipple worked for the Eagles while the younger Heckert was the general manager in Philadelphia. Board worked under Browns President Mike Holmgren while he coached the Seahawks. Wilson played for Holmgren, when he was a quarterbacks coach and an offensive coordinator for the 49ers.


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