Daryl Ruiter of 92.3 The Fan reports that Michael Lombardi will not speak to the press on behalf of the Browns at the combine. The Browns instead will opt to have head coach Rob Chudzinski speak for the team. The Browns always said they wanted a coach to be very involved in personnel, and in one of the first opportunities, they appear to be proving it.
In the end, it probably means very little in determining who has the power in the personnel department, but it is at least symbolic early that the coach won’t just be a bystander. Either that or they’re looking to extend the grace period for Lombardi as he continues to try and separate himself from his most recent media past that already had him commenting on this upcoming draft.
No matter who is speaking for the Browns, I expect them to reveal very little. The team has a good amount of time to mold the current roster via free agency before the draft itself. Common thought around media circles (of which Lombardi was recently a big part) is that the Browns will look to address defense, specifically the pass rush, with their first draft pick this year.
We’ll see, of course, but I’ll wait a bit before I start slotting names onto the mock boards.
[Related: NFL Rumor: Browns not planning on re-signing Phil Dawson]