CLEVELAND, OH – Jim Schwartz began his NFL career as a gofer with the Browns. If he comes back, he can boss people around.
The Philadelphia Eagles' defensive coordinator, who started out as a scout and errand runner under coach Bill Belichick in Cleveland, interviewed Wednesday to be the Browns' next coach. Schwartz has more head coaching experience than any of the other five candidates who have spoken to the team.
Schwartz had a five-year run as Detroit's coach, and he long has been regarded as one of the league's top assistants.
The 53-year-old is looking for another shot as head coach, and he could get the chance with the Browns, who are the only team still looking.
Owner Jimmy Haslam promised a “disciplined” and “thorough” search for his next coach last week, and there's no reason for the Browns to rush now that they don't have any competition and the field of available candidates has thinned with Washington, Carolina, Dallas and the New York Giants addressing their vacancies.
Schwartz is not considered a front-runner for Cleveland's job, but he does have an impressive resume, which includes inheriting an 0-16 team in Detroit and taking it to the playoffs in his third season. Schwartz went 29-52 with the Lions.
After coaching in college, Schwartz joined the Browns in 1993 and worked with the team for three years before owner Art Modell moved the team to Baltimore, where he became the Ravens' outside linebackers coach. He was Tennessee's defensive coordinator and then got the Lions job in 2009.
Schwartz has spent the past four seasons with the Eagles, who have ranked in the top 5 in yards and points allowed three times with him in charge. He is under contract with Philadelphia through next season, but the club can't stop him from taking a head job with another team.