Browns OC Candidate No. 1 – Jerrod Johnson
Perhaps the hottest coach of the offseason is Jerrod Johnson who was the previous quarterback coach for the Houston Texans. Johnson gets a ton of credit for the work CJ Stroud did in 2023 which will likely get him rookie of the year and got the Houston Texans back to the playoffs when many expected them to be at the bottom of the league.
Let me be clear, Moore and Johnson are extremely close to equal options for the Cleveland Browns, I do think that Johnson would have a longer tenure as Moore is likely to get poached as a head coach. But I must mention, that Johnson has only been a true position coach in the NFL for two years. There could be a clear overreaction to what happened with Stroud this season, but Berry and Stefanski must at least acknowledge his lack of experience.
I still see him as the perfect fit for the Browns because of the experience that Johnson lacks, Stefanski can give to him as he is truly the brains of this Browns offense. No one is poaching Johnson without giving him the ability to call plays, but still being early in his career, Stefanski will still have an opportunity to develop and mentor him into exactly what he wants.
It’s far too early to call Johson the “quarterback whisperer”, but when you look at the Texans roster and all the injuries they faced, there is no doubt that Stroud carried this offense on the back. The Cleveland Browns felt that when they wiped the Texans out in the regular season without Stroud, and then in return were smacked around by the Texans in the wildcard round of the playoffs.
Johnson will certainly have a pick of the litter as far as jobs, but being able to be under Stefanski with Watson as his quarterback should be appealing