April 17, 2014

Medina
Mostly sunny
60°F

Cribbs deal still in limbo

Browns president Mike Holmgren said Tuesday there’s nothing new to report on contract negotiations with All-Pro special teamer Joshua Cribbs, other than he had a nice conversation with Cribbs’ agents last week.

“Whatever went on before, we wiped the slate clean,” Holmgren said on WKNR 850-AM. “We’d like him here, and I believe Josh wants to be here in his heart. It will take honest discussion on both sides.

“I’m hopeful we’ll get something done. We’ll have discussions in the next couple weeks.”

Cribbs has three years left on a six-year, $6.7 million contract, and when Holmgren was hired he said it was “unprecedented” to renegotiate with that much time left on a deal.

“But there are ways to reward Josh for what he’s done,” Holmgren said. “I’m a firm believer in doing that. There are ways to do that without breaking the precedent of the three-year deal.”

Holmgren hasn’t met with the media since announcing Tom Heckert as general manager Jan. 12. Holmgren said it was still too early for him to give an opinion on the quarterback position. Brady Quinn and Derek Anderson struggled mightily this season.

“I don’t know the situation well enough,” Holmgren said. “Is the quarterback of the Browns here already? Maybe.

“If not, we have to go to free agency or the draft. We’ll see.”

Holmgren was asked if former Browns quarterback Bernie Kosar will have a role in the restructured organization. He’s a trusted adviser to owner Randy Lerner and took on a larger presence when general manager George Kokinis was fired at midseason.

“We had a good discussion the other day,” Holmgren said. “He filled a void last season. Let me get things settled and see what role, if any, he’ll have here.

“He’s important to the people of the city. I love Bernie Kosar. If he’ll have an official role with the team, I don’t know. He always will have a role as an unofficial member of the Cleveland Browns.”

Contact Scott Petrak at (440) 329-7253 or spetrak@chroniclet.com.