How Much Longer Can Kevin Stefanski Last?

The Cleveland Browns have fallen to an underwhelming 3-6 record on the year, and are currently third place in the AFC North. The Browns have always been accustomed to losing, however when Kevin Stefanski was brought in, things were supposed to change. To be fair, one could say that for any new coaching regime. But the new management, head coach, and improving roster were all good signs for the future ahead. As hinted earlier, the promised land fans thought was on the horizon was merely a mirage. Now, the question everyone is asking is: how much longer can Stefanski last?

How Much Longer Can Stefanski Last?
Photo Credits: AP Photo/Kevork Djansezian

The Browns firing a head coach is nothing new, so why get hot and bothered about Stefanski? Well, to put it into perspective, you must first understand how awful this team is playing right now. Relative to expectations, that is. Coming into this season, the defense was in desperate need of living up to their job responsibilities. Jadeveon Clowney was brought back, Myles Garrett is supposed to anchor the other DE spot, and the secondary looked formidable. If you’re a fan of the Browns, you know looks can be deceiving. The flashing lights of acquisitions this year, including the Deion Jones trade, have largely been for nothing. While that might seem like harsh criticism, look at the proof in the pudding below:

Stefanski Isn’t Helping His Case

Controversy has entrenched the Browns in nearly every facet of football this year. The questionable (to put it lightly) trade for Deshaun Watson, the horrible PR campaign afterward, and the failure to live up to the hype this season have left cracks in the walls of the Browns’ facility. Seemingly, it seems that the walls of Stefanski’s office could come tumbling down any week now. Let’s break it down with numbers, according to ESPN’s FPI, they only have a 4.5% chance of making the playoffs. To add insult to injury, they also currently possess a 14% chance of having a top-fifteen draft pick next April… that will go to Houston(as a part of the Watson trade).

The Browns, who possess two All-Pro running backs, have been out-rushed for five of its last six contests. Fans on the couch and professional analysts alike are openly questioning the Browns on every level. In other words, any way you cut it, the Browns are competing for an appearance in the toilet bowl instead of the Superbowl. Their defense can’t get a stop, even with brand-new reinforcements. And the offense isn’t even using its superstars. Yikes. It’s increasingly frustrating to any passionate fan of theirs to not see the two players, who they gave contracts to carry the ball, not get the ball. Yes, we know it’s becoming a pass-heavy league, but if you’re going to pay these two elite rushers to stay on the team, it seems prudent to use them. But, that would be too easy, huh?

Will Stefanski Last Longer?

In all honesty, we simply don’t know. It’s hard to imagine he can survive until the end of the year. Then again, management might wait until a few games with Deshaun Watson before making a major change. Funnily enough, even Kevin Stefanski is sick of his play-calling.

“In hindsight, I definitely wish I did something different,” Stefanski said Monday. “This is where I have to put our guys in position to succeed, and I didn’t do that there and I’m sick about it. Definitely got too wrapped up in the previous play call with the clock stopping and how that unfolded. I’ve got to put our guys in position and I can’t do that to our team.”

The head coach is responsible for a lot of the team’s success, ranging from offensive play-calling to defensive arrangements, and public relations for the team. Yet, he has fallen short on all three facets of his control. Call it fate, call it karma, but rumblings are happening in Cleveland on behalf of their beloved football team. The offense is questionable, Watson has yet to make his debut, the defense is atrocious, and they have not handled any of it with grace. In conclusion, unless miracles start happening in Northern Ohio, I can’t imagine Kevin Stefanski will stay the head coach in Cleveland much longer.

“Certainly understand that we had some guys playing in positions where I need to make sure I call the game in an appropriate fashion, but that doesn’t excuse not being aggressive when it’s called for.”

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