1. Kevin Stefanski knows how to scheme an offense
Most Browns fans have to admit they loved the Freddie Kitchens hire. He wasn’t the tired old re-tread we were all worried about and he was coming off a great run as the interim offensive coordinator. Then, most impressively, he said if you don’t wear orange and brown, you don’t matter.
Looking back on it now, there were so many warning signs. Kitchens never really conducted himself like an NFL head coach and while that seemed refreshing, there’s a reason he seemed so out of place compared to other head coaches.
This isn’t meant to bash Kitchens, because he seems like a genuinely great guy by all accounts. Instead, he just wasn’t ready for the role he was given and that falls on John Dorsey — which is why he’s out of a job now.
This year, the Browns looked much harder at every head coaching candidate, and in the end, it was Kevin Stefanski who they went with. So far, he seems to be the exact opposite of Kitchens. He isn’t trying to make up phrases such as “Whoopty-Hell” and there’s no way he would be seen in a “Pittsburgh started it” t-shirt.
Instead, Stefanski appears to be a no-nonsense coach who has a track record of success. Like Kitchens, he has limited play-calling experience but he was successful in that role for more than a full season with the Vikings. He was also with that organization for 13 years, serving regime changes and continuing to be a valued member of the staff.
Most importantly, he proved in 2019 that he can cater his offense to his players. He built a game plan around Dalvin Cook in Minnesota that allowed everyone on the offense to have their most efficient seasons.
For that reason, there’s genuine hope that he can get the most out of Baker Mayfield, Nick Chubb, and the rest of this talented offense.
That ends up being the No. 1 reason for the Browns offense to finish in the top-10 in 2020.