Cleveland Browns: Why Freddie Kitchens won’t get automatic free pass

CLEVELAND, OHIO - AUGUST 29: Head coach Freddie Kitchens of the Cleveland Browns on the sidelines during the first half of a preseason game against the Detroit Lions at FirstEnergy Stadium on August 29, 2019 in Cleveland, Ohio. (Photo by Jason Miller/Getty Images)
CLEVELAND, OHIO - AUGUST 29: Head coach Freddie Kitchens of the Cleveland Browns on the sidelines during the first half of a preseason game against the Detroit Lions at FirstEnergy Stadium on August 29, 2019 in Cleveland, Ohio. (Photo by Jason Miller/Getty Images) /

The front office recently said they want Freddie Kitchens to stick with the Cleveland Browns, but that feeling could soon be changing

NFL coaches generally get the benefit of the doubt after a poor first year as a rookie head coach, but that will not be the case for Freddie Kitchens.  There are at least twenty-three million reasons why.

That’s the amount of money that the Haslams went into the hole for your 2019 Cleveland Browns, spending hard-earned salary cap carryover dollars to augment the Super Bowl chances. The team cannot possibly make a bet of that magnitude and then shrug it off as a learning experience.

No, this team was prepared to win now, or it should never have overspent their cap allowance.

This team, rightly or wrongly, believed they had a legitimate shot, and the reason they hired Freddie Kitchens was based on the miraculous offensive turnaround of 2008.

That turnaround saw the stats immediately jump across the board, as the Browns were transformed from a bad team getting worse under Hue Jackson, to a playoff-caliber team under Gregg Williams with Kitchens coordinating the offense and making most of the play calls.

More. Sticking with Freddie the right move?. light

This reviewer first advocated Gregg Williams for head coach back in 2017 while Hue Jackson was in his heyday. However, when it finally happened in the second half of 2018, the Browns offense exploded under Kitchens while the defense continued to stagnate, it seemed very reasonable to choose Kitchens over a deserving Williams.

Based on the numbers, it seemed at the time that Kitchens might have had the magic elixir for an awesome offense. General manager John Dorsey and the Haslams made a good decision based on what they knew at the time.

Okay, but that was wrong, and by the way, Williams is doing a great job coordinating the defense of the New York Jets this year.

The Browns probably still believe that they are in a short window for the Super Bowl, and that window does not stay open for ten years. For most teams, it is more like two or three years.

In the case of the Browns, are they going to be able to keep Myles Garrett while the team undergoes another learning experience in 2020? Probably not. They can franchise him for a year, but then how will they sign Baker Mayfield and Nick Chubb the following year?

Fans are understandably tired of blowing up the team every year and starting over, and some advocate staying with a losing coach just to get continuity.

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That thought process is wrong and there are several reasons why. First, it is the definition of dysfunction to stay in an unworkable situation just because it is the status quo. You have to have some reason to believe that it is going to get better.

Second, although continuity is very desirable, it has to be with the right guy. Continue with a good coach, not the bad ones. Fire the bad ones. It’s only bad to fire someone who legitimately should have been kept.

Third, the nature of football is that it’s a competition, and everyone wants to win a Super Bowl. At some point, if someone doesn’t win, someone else gets a chance to see if he can get it done.

Fans should have no problem with the sports world firing people for being unsuccessful. This is not the Post Office, it is pro football. Like Bill Parcells put it, “at some point, we are all going to be told to go play golf.”

Fourth, Freddie will get over it, and he is making a lot of money from the Haslams. The Browns have done well for him. He can cry all the way to the bank.

Fans can still like Freddie Kitchens while realizing that being the head coach is not the best job for him.

Cleveland will probably keep him till the end of the season out of respect for the new coach. An in-season firing makes it more difficult for the new coach.  ou want to be able to assure the new coach that management will try to back him for as long as possible.

3-36-1 is actually a pretty good argument for the patience of management. Firing a coach before the season is over demonstrates unnecessary haste. That’s why they will wait for another two weeks unless John Dorsey and the Haslams feel that they absolutely need to act immediately.

Moreover, the team isn’t making the playoffs if they hire someone now and if they wait there may be some very good coaches getting recycled at the end of this season. If they wait two weeks there may be some better names to choose from.

It may not be fair if Freddie Kitchens does not automatically get a chance to grow into his role as head coach. So what? The Browns need to do what they need to take that shot at the playoffs, in 2020, regardless of whether it is fair to the individual or not. This team should be about winning, simple as that.

We will conclude with the following post from Todd Blocher of the Beavercreek Browns Backers, because it sums up the situation so nicely, even if warp speed typing resulted in a few typos.

Freddie did all he could. Unfortunately, this marriage just isn’t working.

Next. 5 College coaches to replace Freddie. dark

There will be backlash if they Browns move on, but that’s better than continuing to trot out a gameplan that’s not working.