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Browns President Mike Holmgren responds to CBS reporting he's interested in coaching Cowboys

By Nate Ulrich Published: November 12, 2012

Mike Holmgren, the outgoing president of the Browns, addressed a report from CBS that he “has serious interest” in coaching the Dallas Cowboys if the job opens.

“I honestly don’t know what the future holds or what I want to do,” Holmgren said today in the Browns' media center after reporters requested a comment. “Honestly. Believe me on that.”

Holmgren, 64, added that he hasn’t talked to anybody -- including the Cowboys -- about his future since he held his farewell news conference Oct. 23 at the Browns’ headquarters in Berea.

“I haven’t talked to a single soul,” Holmgren said.

Not even his agent, Bob LaMonte?

“I have not talked to Bob in a month,” Holmgren said. “Like I said, I was his first client and now I'm old news. He lost my phone number.”

During the aforementioned news conference, Holmgren did not rule out a return to coaching.

“Mike Holmgren, he has serious interest in that job if it opens up, according to my sources,” Jason La Canfora of CBS said Sunday on NFL Today. “Remember, he worked with [Cowboys owner] Jerry Jones for 13 years on the competition committee. They have a strong relationship and at this stage of his career, Holmgren’s not looking for a rebuild. He’s going for a retool.”

Jason Garrett is in his second season as coach of the Cowboys (4-5), who will host the Browns (2-7) at 1 p.m. Sunday. Holmgren said he “cannot imagine” La Canfora’s report would be a distraction for the Browns. He also said he would not talk to anyone about the possibility of coaching the Cowboys out of respect for Garrett.

“I’ve always been, quite honestly, bothered by the speculation during the season when coaches are trying to work and they’re fighting like crazy for their jobs, and I would never do that,” Holmgren said. “I would never do that to anybody. I have tremendous respect for obviously Jason Garrett. Jerry Jones and I, I consider him a friend. We worked on the [competition] committees a long time together. But I just wouldn’t do that.”

Holmgren said he will attend the game Sunday in Dallas.

“Yeah, and I hope to say hello to Jerry and [his son], Stephen [Jones], and those guys,” Holmgren said.

Jones discussed the report on the Cowboys’ flagship radio station Sunday, 105.3 The Fan (KRLD-FM), according to Jon Machota, a special contributor to The Dallas Morning News.

“Of course, Mike Holmgren is a heck of a coach,” Jones said. “But the facts are that Jason Garrett gives us an outstanding chance to be what we want to be. So there you have it. I wouldn’t comment one way or the other there with Mike.”

Jones also mentioned he discussed the report about Holmgren with Cowboys radio voice Brad Sham, according to Machota's report.

“I was interested in why he said he would like to be the coach,” Jones said. “And that was good. We are good friends, have a lot of respect for each other, served on the competition committee together for eight years. He’s very familiar with how we operate the Cowboys, and does have a high appreciation for our talent that we have on the team right now. All of that is a compliment. Thank you, Mike.”

With new CEO Joe Banner now in control of the Browns, will Holmgren stay with the organization for the rest of this season?

“As long as I feel I can contribute a little bit and helping some of the players and helping the coaches a little bit,” Holmgren said. “Joe and I have talked. As long as I'm feeling good about a contribution [I’ll stay], but if I’m not helping that could change. But right now the plan is to be here through the end of the season.”

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