Report: Browns hiring Vikings OC Kevin Stefanski to be head coach
The Cleveland Browns’ coaching search appears to be over. According to Ian Rapoport of the NFL Network, the Browns are planning to hire Minnesota Vikings offensive coordinator Kevin Stefanski to be their head coach. He interviewed for the same position after the 2018 season.
Stefanski, 37, is well-regarded as one of the NFL’s more promising young offensive minds. He got the chance to show in 2018 when the Vikings upgraded the now-Browns coach to offensive coordinator. He coached in the same role in 2019.
In 2019, the Vikings, under Stefanski, finished 16th in the NFL in yards (5,656) and eighth in points (407). With the help of Gary Kubiak, he constructed one of the NFL’s best rushing offenses, as Minnesota recorded 2,133 yards and 19 touchdowns on the ground, both sixth in the NFL.
The Vikings upset the New Orleans Saints in the Wild Card round of the NFL playoffs. They could not carry that momentum into the divisional round, as the San Francisco 49ers beat Minnesota 27-10 a day before Stefanski’s hiring.
As the Browns’ new head coach, Stefanski will look to help end a playoff drought that included Cleveland not seeing the postseason for the entire 2010s decade. He will replace Freddie Kitchens, who Cleveland fired after one season.
In Cleveland, Stefanski has the opportunity to coach a talented offense that fell well short of expectations in 2019. Third-year quarterback Baker Mayfield is the focal point, with the NFL’s second-ranked rusher Nick Chubb and a superstar wide receiver duo of Odell Beckham Jr. and Jarvis Landry finishing off an offense that doesn’t lack weapons.