BREAKING: Banner and Lombardi leaving the Browns - Hawaii News Now - KGMB and KHNL

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BREAKING: Banner & Lombardi leaving the Browns; Farmer promoted

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Lombardi, Banner are out; Ray Farmer is promoted to GM. Lombardi, Banner are out; Ray Farmer is promoted to GM.
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BEREA, OH (WOIO) -

The Cleveland Browns making changes to the front office.

The team has announced Joe Banner will be stepping down in the next two months as CEO. General Manager Michael Lombardi is also leaving the team.

Ray Farmer has been promoted to GM.  According to a Browns news release, Farmer will immediately take over the team's football operations and lead the Browns during free agency and the upcoming draft.

A news conference has been scheduled for 11:30 a.m.

You can watch it live - http://bit.ly/12LjhDY

Statement

 Haslam released the following statement:

"First of all, we wanted to capitalize on the knowledge, experience and character we're fortunate to have in Ray Farmer. Ray has a tremendous football IQ, he's compelling, and he understands the types of players we need to acquire and develop in order to win in Cleveland. He embraces his partnership with Mike Pettine, which is critical in helping build the right team. Ray will provide excellent leadership in our front office.

"We appreciate Joe's contributions to the Cleveland Browns, especially in helping us as new owners. He was committed to creating a successful organization and bringing in talented individuals. We thank him for his work and dedication. We wish him and his family the best.

"Alec will continue in his role as President of this team. I think he's one of the most intelligent and innovative young executives in the NFL.

"We're also grateful for Mike Lombardi's efforts and commitment since rejoining our organization. He is an experienced and creative NFL executive with a unique ability to see the big picture. He has tremendous instincts and I know he'll be a valuable addition to any NFL organization. We simply wanted to give Ray this opportunity that he's earned. We wanted to move forward under his leadership and capabilities.

"The purpose of these moves is to unify our team with one, unequivocal goal: Provide our fans with the winning organization they have long deserved."

Statement from Joe Banner:

"It is bittersweet leaving the Browns organization. I have thoroughly enjoyed working with Jimmy Haslam and helping him set the infrastructure for this franchise. I am proud of the talented individuals we brought in to help lead this team and feel that the Cleveland Browns are in good hands moving forward."

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