Eric Mangini was denied a third season as the Browns' coach. Given a second chance last year by team president Mike Holmgren to improve, Mangini was fired Monday after a second straight 5-11 season and one day after a 41-9 home loss to the Steelers.
Holmgren, who spent several days mulling Mangini's future after last season, dismissed him at a morning meeting. Mangini went 10-22 with the Browns and ended with a four-game losing streak. He has two years and nearly $8 million left on his contract.
"This decision was not easy for me, and it was one into which I put a great deal of thought," Holmgren said. "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."
Holmgren would not rule out coaching again, but he said he is not part of the initial search for a replacement. He said it will not be limited to those with pro experience and that he has no timetable.
After being dismissed, Mangini addressed his players for 20 minutes. In a statement, he said: " . . . I have a deep respect for the players and how they have made a profound difference in changing the culture - a tougher, smarter, more competitive, selfless team that never gave up.''
The Browns hired Mangini, 39, two years ago, shortly after the Jets fired him after they missed the playoffs with a late-season collapse.
Vikings hire FrazierThe Vikings have reached an agreement with Leslie Frazier to be their next coach. Frazier, 51, became interim coach Nov. 22 when Brad Childress was fired, and the Vikings went 3-3 under him after a 3-7 start. The former Bears cornerback was Childress' defensive coordinator.
"He's always seemed like a head coach ever since he took over that role," tackle Bryant McKinnie said. "He knows how to talk to you, and he respects you."
Kubiak, Del Rio to stayTexans coach Gary Kubiak will return, but defensive coordinator Frank Bush and three of his assistants were fired. Houston (6-10) lost eight of its last 10 games, hobbled by a defense that gave up a league-high 4,280 yards passing and 33 touchdown passes . . . Jaguars owner Wayne Weaver said Jack Del Rio's job is safe, but his role as defensive play-caller is over. After interviewing Del Rio and numerous players, Weaver asked the coach to give up control of the defense. Weaver also made it clear Del Rio must make the postseason in 2011 to keep his job. Del Rio, 66-65 with the Jaguars, is the first coach since 1970 to lead the same team for eight years without winning a division title.