The search for the next head coach of the Cleveland Browns is five days old.
Here's what we know so far:
We also found out via reports that the Browns are not allowing teams to interview offensive coordinator Freddie Kitchens for the same post elsewhere. Kitchens is slated to interview for the Browns head coaching job next week. I think he is going to get a serious look.
Josh McDaniels' name came up in a report on Thursday stating there is mutual interest between he and the Browns. Mike McCarthy is scheduled to talk with the Browns to next week as well.
At this point, however, there really has been no shocking names and no surprises. History shows us that it is possible.
On Thursday's Donovan Live Postgame Show, Jim Donovan relayed to me the story of the Cleveland Browns coaching search after firing Chris Palmer at the end of the 2000 season.
Then-owner Al Lerner flew to Miami along with team president Carmen Policy and their wives to interview University of Miami head coach Butch Davis.
The Hurricanes had just completed an 11-1 season and finished No. 2 in the nation, culminating a long climb back after years of NCAA violations. Davis had a plethora of key stars returning to the U in 2001 as a new dynasty was taking shape. He turned down the Browns job.
Just for context, the Browns finished 2-14 for the second year in a row in 2000. They had a young quarterback in Tim Couch, plenty of draft picks, and a fan base excited about the return of NFL football after Art Modell moved the franchise to Baltimore after the 1995 season.
Make no mistake, the job now is MUCH more attractive than it was 18 years ago, but the Browns job was highly valued back then.
The search lasted into late January. It was thought that the Browns were going to hire either Giants defensive coordinator John Fox, or Ravens defensive coordinator Marvin Lewis. Those two teams met in Tampa in Super Bowl XXXV. Lewis' Ravens defense stole the show as Baltimore won going away, 34-7. That defense is still considered one of the greatest in NFL history.
Everyone thought Lewis was going to get the Browns job. Jim Donovan told me that a press release had been prepared indicating as much.
During the game, Policy and Lerner gave one last call to Davis and his agent, Marvin Demoff, to see if there was any chance that he might reconsider coaching the Browns.
The two sides went back and forth in their negotiations during the game. Davis asked for an extra $1 million dollars in salary and Lerner told Policy, "If it's going to take another million to get us our coach, go ahead."
The deal was done not long after Modell hoisted the Vince Lombardi Trophy.
The rest is history.
I bring all of this up because it's entirely possible that the next head coach of the Cleveland Browns is someone you've not heard listed as a candidate yet.
Things can change in a hurry. Stay tuned.