Former Browns General Manager Mike Lombardi has joined the New England Patriots as an assistant to the coaching staff, the Patriots announced this afternoon.
Lombardi will reunite with longtime friend and Patriots coach Bill Belichick. The two spent 1991-95 together with the Browns when Lombardi was a personnel executive and Belichick was the coach.
Lombardi’s second tour with the Browns lasted only 13 months. Owner Jimmy Haslam fired Lombardi along with CEO Joe Banner on Feb. 11 and promoted assistant GM Ray Farmer to Lombardi’s post.
So what exactly will Lombardi being doing for the Patriots?
“Mike’s got a lot of experience," Belichick said today at the NFL Scouting Combine. “He’s done a lot of things in his career in the NFL. He’ll certainly be doing many of those things for us. We’ll see how it goes.”
And why didn't Belichick hire Lombardi during those five years he wasn't with a team and worked as an analyst for NFL Network instead?
Said Belichick: “We do what we always do -- what we think is best for our football team.”
Below is a news release from the Patriots.
The New England Patriots announced today the addition of Michael Lombardi as an assistant to the coaching staff. Lombardi brings 23 years of NFL experience as a front office executive, most recently serving as general manager for the Cleveland Browns in 2013.
Lombardi joined the NFL personnel ranks in 1984, spending three seasons (1984-86) in the personnel department of the San Francisco 49ers. He then spent nine seasons (1987-95) with the Cleveland Browns as a scout, pro personnel director and director of player personnel. Lombardi then spent two seasons with the Philadelphia Eagles (1997-98) in the personnel department before joining the Oakland Raiders for eight seasons (1999-2007) in the player personnel department.
Outside of the front office, Lombardi has held multiple positions as a collegiate coach, analyst, reporter and writer throughout his career, including time as analyst with NFL network and NFL.com.
Lombardi was a three-year letterman (1979-81) as a defensive lineman at Hofstra University.