The End of the Carousel in Cleveland
How do you stop a spinning object? You apply force in opposition to the trajectory of the object. It sounds easy enough, yet in Cleveland we waited 15 seasons for the revolving door at quarterback to stop. Technically we aren’t out of the woods where the coaching carousel is concerned, but let me tell you a not-so-well-kept secret. The Browns and Kevin Stefanski will be working together for many years.
If you think I’m jumping the gun with Stefanski, you would be incorrect. His future isn’t based solely on the impressive record he has accumulated in his first season as an NFL head coach. It’s just about everything about him and the way he has performed as a head coach that makes this a foregone conclusion. The players like and respect him, any team issues have been handled internally, he manages game day well, he knows how to use the abilities of his players, and he handles the press well.
The path to Stefanski and the current regime was not an obvious one or one that was necessarily easy. The Browns were obviously going to move on from Freddie Kitchens, but seeing John Dorsey leave was tough for a lot of fans. Regardless of your opinion of Dorsey, he brought several key players to the current roster and was the football mind we long wanted to see in charge.
It can be called nothing short of a perfect storm to get Andrew Berry back in the building as General Manger after a hiatus in which he trained under the uber-talented Howie Roseman. If you’re still stinging from the Carson Wentz trade, think of Berry as the player to be named later. It should help.
Berry has been nothing short of brilliant in his inaugural season as the Browns GM. Not only did he bring in talent, he fortified the roster with players on the offensive side of the ball who fit Stefanski’s needs and plans. Berry spent money on free agents Austin Hooper and Jack Conklin, extended Myles Garrett and Kareem Hunt and navigated the NFL draft like a grizzled veteran. Just think what Berry can do over three or four seasons.
We’ve seen regime after regime in Cleveland. Changing constantly has never yielded dividends. Success will be found by having patience once the right regime is in place. This, ladies and gentlemen, is the right regime. The record over the next couple of seasons will be pretty good, but is irrelevant. Sit back and enjoy watching these gentlemen do their jobs. They won’t always be perfect. They won’t always win, but you remember going 0–16, right? It wasn’t that long ago.
The players have also contributed to the resurgence for the Browns. Guys like Myles Garrett, Kareem Hunt and Baker Mayfield, who want to play here are huge for the psyche of the team. Guys like Denzel Ward and Nick Chubb who leave it all on the field and lead by example are exactly the type of guys you want on your team.
It’s been a long road for the Browns and the fanbase. This season is just what the doctor ordered. Go Browns