- Jamison Hensley, ESPN Staff Writer
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The first big rumor in the Browns' coaching search has surfaced, and the Browns are apparently targeting Oregon's Chip Kelly to be their new head coach.
Kelly is considered the "clear No. 1 choice" of the Browns, two high-ranking NFL personnel executives told Adam Caplan of Sirius XM radio.
This shouldn't come as a shocker because Kelly had been linked to the Browns even before they fired coach Pat Shurmur on Monday. Kelly has become an intriguing candidate for NFL teams after going 45-7 at Oregon with a high-tempo offensive attack. The biggest drawback with Kelly is his lack of NFL pedigree. He has never been involved in the league as a player or coach of any kind.
When owner Jimmy Haslam and chief executive officer Joe Banner announced that they would hire a coach before a general manager, some speculated this signaled a run at someone like Alabama's Nick Saban or former NFL coach Jon Gruden. Both of those coaches would want significant say on personnel.
Other candidates who reportedly have interviews with the Browns include: Falcons offensive coordinator Dick Koetter, Syracuse head coach Doug Marrone and Cardinals defensive coordinator Ray Horton.
As always, stay tuned.