Browns Hire New Head Coach, Kevin Stefanski

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Terence Checkett

The Cleveland Browns had an exciting and long 2019 season. However now that it’s over we can reflect on the team’s performance. Going into the season the Browns’ had high expectations and hoped to win their division and make the playoffs for the first time in years. Several factors and events prevented that from happening as Cleveland finished with a 6-10 record by their last game.

Quarterback Baker Mayfield declined in his production and consistency in his sophomore season, throwing a lot of interceptions and failing to perform in crunch time on several occasions. The offensive line did not provide much help to Mayfield, forcing him to make quick and low quality throws. Meanwhile, the defense took a step back from its great 2018, as the Myles Garrett saga took a toll on the season. The most encouraging piece had to be 2nd year running back Nick Chubb as he finished just short of the rushing title, and was selected to the Pro Bowl.

Despite these personnel problems, perhaps the biggest issue was a lack of leadership in the coaching position. First time head coach Freddie Kitchens struggled to control the team and the game. Making several play calling mistakes and in general, letting things get out of hand with the roster. A change was needed.

The day after the season ended, the Browns fired Kitchens and started their search for a replacement. The search ended a couple weeks later with the signing of a 5 year deal with Viking’s Offensive Coordinator Kevin Stefanski. Stefanski was thought to be a front runner and a main target of the Browns leading all the way back to last season. This is due to his success with the Vikings offense, an offense that draws many similarities to that our Cleveland’s.

I asked Browns super fan and Lakewood High senior, Sean O’Donnell, about his thoughts on the hire: “I would have preferred someone with head coaching experience, but Stefanski is growing on me.”

The next move for the Browns will be to hire a GM, as they also let go of John Dorsey after the season. And also to decide whether they will play with an offensive coordinator or let Stefanski call his own plays. There are lot’s of exciting story lines to watch out for this off season, hopefully one of them will be the key to a playoff season!