Football

Is Holmgren Mangini's savior?

Eric Mangini's banking on Mike Holmgren's coaching background to buy him another year with the Browns.

With Holmgren set to assume control of Cleveland’s fractured football operations sometime next week, Mangini’s future will be in the hands of the 61-year-old former coach of Seattle and Green Bay, who agreed Monday to become the team’s new president.

At just 3-11 during a first season in Cleveland that has been anything but smooth, Mangini’s fate remains unclear. Holmgren could keep him or decide to bring in his own coach. Either way, Mangini believes Holmgren’s experience as an NFL head coach could work in his favor.

“I think if you’ve been a head coach, you understand the different things that go into any season,” Mangini said Tuesday. “Mike’s last year in Seattle, they had a tough season and were 4-12. You go through those things. We were 5-11 in New England with Bill (Belichick). Jeff Fisher (Tennessee’s coach) was taking a lot of heat early on and he did a nice job of turning it around.”

Hundreds at Henry’s funeral

Chris Henry’s fiancée wept as she spoke about the late Cincinnati Bengals receiver Tuesday, saying that while she often got credit for steering him clear of trouble, he changed her life as well.

Henry, 26, was killed after he fell out of the bed of pickup truck driven by his fiancée, Loleini Tonga, during what police called a domestic dispute. Police are investigating, but no charges have been filed.

Tonga, wearing large sunglasses, paused to gather herself repeatedly as she spoke to hundreds of mourners at his funeral — including Henry’s teammates — who filled the grandstands at a suburban New Orleans events center. Tonga professed eternal love for Henry and promised to raise their children the way he would want.

“Can’t nobody know the way I’m feeling right now. No one can explain the relationship that me and Chris had. In six years of knowing each other – through hard times, good times – we loved each other very much,” she said. “People say I helped change his life. No. He changed mine.”

Extra points

Bills cornerback Terrence McGee is done for the season, and it’s suddenly unclear who’ll start at quarterback this weekend after injuries forced Buffalo to re-sign former third-stringer Gibran Hamdan. … Browns quarterback Brady Quinn was placed on injured reserve with an unspecified foot injury, the second straight season he has finished on IR. ... A former UPS driver has sued Joe Namath, alleging he was attacked by the Hall of Fame quarterback’s dogs while making a delivery at his Florida home. ... Green Bay Packers defensive end Johnny Jolly appeared briefly in a Houston courtroom to answer refiled charges he illegally possessed at least 200 grams of codeine. ... The NFL Players Association has challenged the league’s right to eliminate a supplemental revenue-sharing program among the 32 teams. ... The New Orleans Saints cut kicker John Carney. ... Wide receiver Joey Galloway was added to the Pittsburgh Steelers’ roster as the replacement for Limas Sweed. ... The Arizona Cardinals released linebacker Ali Highsmith and fullback Brandon Renkart and signed safety Hamza Abdullah and tackle Cliff Louis. ... The San Diego Chargers placed center Scott Mruczkowski on injured reserve with an ankle injury.

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