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AP source: Browns poised to hire Mike Pettine

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Bills have big hole to fill in replacing Pettine
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FILE - In this July 31, 2013, file photo, Buffalo Bills defensive coordinator Mike Pettine walks to the field during NFL football training camp in Pittsford, N.Y. Pettine has interviewed for the Cleveland Browns head coaching position, a person familiar with the Browns' plans told the Associated Press. Pettine interviewed with owner Jimmy Haslam and CEO Joe Banner last week and will have his second meeting on Tuesday night, Jan. 21, 2014, in Mobile, Ala., said the person who spoke on condition of anonymity because the team is not commenting during its search. Pettine is at the Senior Bowl in Mobile with other members of Buffalo's staff. (AP Photo/Bill Wippert, File)

CLEVELAND (AP) -- The Browns are poised to make Buffalo defensive coordinator Mike Pettine their new coach, a person familiar with Cleveland's plans said.

Pettine was expected to visit the club for a third interview Thursday, said the person who spoke to The Associated Press on condition of anonymity because the team is not commenting during its search.

Unless there are unanticipated hang-ups, Pettine will become Cleveland's seventh full-time coach since 1999.

ESPN, citing multiple league sources, said the team is expected to offer Pettine the job.

The Browns have been looking for a coach since firing Rob Chudzinski on Dec. 29. Team officials flew to Mobile, Ala., this week to interview the 47-year-old Pettine, who spent one season with the Bills after four as defensive coordinator of the New York Jets.

Pettine is one of at least 10 known candidates to interview with the Browns, who dismissed Chudzinski hours after the season finale in Pittsburgh. The club had been expected to have a second interview with Seattle defensive coordinator Dan Quinn, who is preparing for the Super Bowl. But things have progressed to the point that the team is focused solely on Pettine.

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AP NFL website: www.pro32.ap.org

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