The owner is sick about the state of his sorry NFL team. The fans are in an uproar. The starting quarterback is historically inefficient and may be about to lose his job. The star running back may retire with one year left on his contract.
The Cleveland Browns are beyond bad.
Their coach doesn't believe it will last.
Eric Mangini believes his plan for turning around the brutal Browns will work despite a horrid first half of the season. On Monday, Mangini said he spoke by phone with Randy Lerner and has the owner's support despite Cleveland's 1-7 start to a season growing worse.
"I never got a feeling otherwise in all my conversations with Randy," Mangini said.
The bye week arrived just in time for the Browns, who were thumped 30-6 on Sunday in Chicago, Cleveland's latest lopsided loss. After the game, an upset and frustrated Lerner told reporters he was "sick about" the team's slide but that he would not fire Mangini.
Mangini, too, is dismayed by the losing but remains confident the Browns will improve.
"This is a process," Mangini said. "We talked about that quite a bit, and that doesn't change. There's things that go along with that and that doesn't mean we're not looking to win every game, it doesn't mean we're not looking to improve each week. On the contrary, that's exactly what we're going to do.
"Randy and I share the same vision and that's something that we talked about and what we do talk about quite a bit is what's the best way to achieve that. I've always had good conversations with him and always will."
Mangini said he shared Lerner's distaste for the Browns' putrid performance so far.
"But I also believe in the things that we're doing and I understand it doesn't happen overnight," he said. "There's not one formula in terms of specific ingredients, but there is a very specific approach that you have to take and I believe in that. It has been successful. It will be successful here."
Mangini and his coaching staff will spend the next week _ the Browns don't play again until Nov. 16 _ evaluating and analyzing every aspect of the team. Despite Cleveland's offense being ranked 31st overall and scoring just five touchdowns, Mangini has no plans to change offensive coordinator Brian Daboll's duties.
However, he may rely more on quarterbacks coach Carl Smith, a former offensive coordinator with New Orleans and Jacksonville.
Mangini's also holding off on making a decision at quarterback. Derek Anderson posted a 10.5 rating in Sunday's debacle before he was yanked in the final minutes for Brady Quinn, who began the season as Cleveland's starter but was benched after just 10 quarters.
Mangini lamented Cleveland's five turnovers, including two fumbles _ one by rookie wide receiver Mohamed Massaquoi, the other by tight end Steve Heiden _ following completions by Anderson that sabotaged potential scoring chances. Mangini felt the Browns were moving the ball and Anderson can't be judged solely on his atrocious statistics.
"You never just want to look at the numbers, you want to always look at it in the context of the game," Mangini said.
Anderson's numbers are impossible to ignore.
According to STATS LLC, his 36.2 QB rating is the lowest of any player through eight weeks since Oakland's Marc Wilson in 1981. Also, Anderson's 320 yards passing in the past four games are the fewest by any quarterback with a minimum of 80 attempts since Chicago's Vince Evans in '81.
Lerner expressed a desire to bring in a reputable football adviser, "a person that can provide leadership and clarity regarding decisions and direction."
Mangini said he would be open to such a hire.
"If you can add quality people that can help you get better, then you do that," Mangini said. "You're always searching for those opportunities."
Mangini's job security was not a topic in Cleveland's locker room, which was mostly vacant Monday.
Linebacker David Bowens, who played for Mangini in New York, feels the coach's system may not take hold until the team starts winning.
"Part of the problem is we have a lot of guys on this team that have been used to losing, been used to being on teams that have won a lot of games and don't understand the process," Bowens said. "I think just selling out and buying in. I firmly believe in just hard work and execution. The coaches can coach their tails off, they can get two hours sleep a week, but they're not playing the game.
"A lot of mistakes are made by us as players. Once we assess that and just buy in, commit ourselves to each other, I think things will change."