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Cleveland Browns name Mike Pettine head coach

7:26 PM, Jan 23, 2014   |    comments
The Bills led the AFC in sacks under DC Mike Pettine in 2013. (Photo: Bill Wippert, AP)
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(USA TODAY) The Cleveland Browns finally have their man.

The team announced Thursday they've named Mike Pettine the 15th coach in franchise history, 25 days after making the surprise decision to dismiss Rob Chudzinski.

"Mike is the epitome of what we want the Browns to be - tough, aggressive and innovative - with a blue-collar, team-first mentality," owner Jimmy Haslam said in a statement.

"He knows what's necessary to beat teams in the AFC North. Most importantly, Mike has repeatedly shown the ability to lead his players to consistent improvement and success, clearly what we are striving for as he leads the Cleveland Browns moving forward."

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Pettine, 47, has been a defensive coordinator the past five seasons between the New York Jets (2009 to '12) and Buffalo Bills, who ranked 10th in defense and set a franchise record with 57 sacks last season.

His hiring fills the final head coach opening in the NFL.

"We wanted to be thorough from the start, and we interviewed as many people as we could," CEO Joe Banner said in the statement.

"From that group, we hired the best individual for this job. Our players and fans are going to really enjoy Mike Pettine and his leadership style. We're excited to have him out in front of our team, and we look forward to working closely with him."

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