The Kevin Stefanski 2020 Coach of the Year Thread

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Grade the signing

  • A+ -Awesome Analytics Alignment!

    Votes: 54 31.4%
  • A - Good choice moving forward

    Votes: 52 30.2%
  • B - Better than the other options

    Votes: 20 11.6%
  • C - Could work out I guess

    Votes: 30 17.4%
  • D - Browns done put their foot in it again, but at least he looks good on TV

    Votes: 6 3.5%
  • F - A failure on every level

    Votes: 10 5.8%

  • Total voters
    172

CBBI

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I never said Stefanski stinks. I am saying his skill as a winning head coach in the NFL is yet to be determined, and you can't say he IS a winning head coach at this point in time. I can say I am disappointed in his results this season, and I think he could have and should have gotten better results.

Let me ask you this, are you satisfied with this season? Do you think we won all the games we should have won? Do you think Stefanski bears no responsibility for the games we gave away by shooting ourselves repeatedly in the foot? How happy are you with being 3 and 8? Is that the best you think was possible?

Of course I'm disappointed with 3-7.

But the reasons why I'm disappointed with this season are far different than yours.

I am disappointed that the defense has regressed as badly as it has despite it being all the same coaches and 80% of the same players. Everyone outside of basically Garrett is playing worse this year than they did last year. I'm disappointed by that.

I am disappointed that the front office gambled with the defensive tackle position like it did and it blew up in their faces as badly as it did.

I'm disappointed that the front office has a lower hit rate on draft picks than I'd like it to be.

I'm not disappointed with Kevin Stefanski. His offense is very good with Jacoby Brissett and it's only going to get better with Deshaun Watson. I think he absolutely understands when to go for it versus when to punt or kick at a level that a lot of other coaches simply do not. I am very confident the Browns, with a MODERATELY improved defense and special teams, will be able to ride that offense into deep playoff runs beginning next season.
 

bushwick_bill

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There is no doubt in my mind that the people thinking Stefanski sucks would be calling for Mike Tomlin's head right now if they were Steelers fans.

There isn't an evaluation going on. It's "my team has disappointed me. I want a new head coach."
This right here and the entire mob with the what has this front office done thats been really good... It is infuriating to me...
 

Cassity14

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Since firing coaches is clearly off the table until after the season, am I correct in saying we're generally all in agreement that there isn't much Stefanski himself can do from a head coaching perspective to make the Browns defense and special teams play better on a week-to-week basis?

Do we all accept there's basically no legitimate fix for the defense or the special teams until the offseason?

Why does this have to be the case? Stefanski is the head coach, not the offensive coordinator. The guys coaching horribly in the other 2 phases of the game are not his peers. No, I’m not willing to throw my hands up and say, “aw shucks we need new ones.”

The head coach, or for a better description, the leader of the organization, has the ability to force adjustments. This team has been built according to Stefanski’s vision, all the way up to hiring the GM. Even he himself has admitted that he’s responsible for this, so why should we decide to give him a pass?

Mid season improvement is *absolutely* possible. Every year there are teams who get better in the second half and/or turn their season around after a difficult start.

The offense has been legitimately great. This year was chalked up as a lost one after the 11 game suspension because the offense was expected to be mediocre or worse. If you had told us here what the Browns’ offense metrics would look like 10 games in despite Watson’s suspension, we’d have said they could contend for the Super Bowl when he gets back because the Browns have the talent everywhere else on the roster to contend.

The head coach is not blameless when it comes to defense and special teams just because he calls plays. His hands off approach to those areas has failed, and as far as we know so far, he’s yet to change it. We’re grilling Woods for the same stubbornness when it comes to X’s and O’s, so I think it’s absolutely fair to be disappointed in Stefanski’s stubbornness to change from a managerial standpoint. It’s clear that the defensive locker room has been seriously damaged as a result, and some of that blame also lies on Kevin.
 

CBBI

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Why does this have to be the case? Stefanski is the head coach, not the offensive coordinator. The guys coaching horribly in the other 2 phases of the game are not his peers. No, I’m not willing to throw my hands up and say, “aw shucks we need new ones.”

The head coach, or for a better description, the leader of the organization, has the ability to force adjustments. This team has been built according to Stefanski’s vision, all the way up to hiring the GM. Even he himself has admitted that he’s responsible for this, so why should we decide to give him a pass?

Mid season improvement is *absolutely* possible. Every year there are teams who get better in the second half and/or turn their season around after a difficult start.

The offense has been legitimately great. This year was chalked up as a lost one after the 11 game suspension because the offense was expected to be mediocre or worse. If you had told us here what the Browns’ offense metrics would look like 10 games in despite Watson’s suspension, we’d have said they could contend for the Super Bowl when he gets back because the Browns have the talent everywhere else on the roster to contend.

The head coach is not blameless when it comes to defense and special teams just because he calls plays. His hands off approach to those areas has failed, and as far as we know so far, he’s yet to change it. We’re grilling Woods for the same stubbornness when it comes to X’s and O’s, so I think it’s absolutely fair to be disappointed in Stefanski’s stubbornness to change from a managerial standpoint. It’s clear that the defensive locker room has been seriously damaged as a result, and some of that blame also lies on Kevin.

These are fair points.

But the problems defensively are multi-layered. There's significant issues with both personnel and coaching. And only addressing one of the issues is not going to fix the other, at least in my opinion.

I also think that one of the two main problem areas - the Browns having the worst DT group in the NFL by a wide margin which is leading to the league's worst run defense - is simply not fixable this season. The Browns need to overhaul that entire position group and that is just not something they can do during a season.

According to DVOA, the Browns have the 2nd worst run defense in the last 15 years. There's just no coaching change that is going to fix that.

Should the Browns have fired Joe Woods earlier this season? Perhaps.

But right or wrong, making a coaching change midseason just flies in the face of the organization's entire way of thinking. They believe in their process and how they use it to make decisions and I simply do not think you'll ever see a coach fired for performance during a season as long as DePodesta/Berry/Stefanski are in change.

And when you combine that with the fact that I think the front office and coaching staff is also very aware that firing Woods and replacing him with Tarver or Bloom isn't going to keep these DTs from getting absolutely blown off the ball every single snap, and that's another key reason why you see the status quo.
 

Out of the Rafters at the Q

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Why does this have to be the case? Stefanski is the head coach, not the offensive coordinator. The guys coaching horribly in the other 2 phases of the game are not his peers. No, I’m not willing to throw my hands up and say, “aw shucks we need new ones.”

The head coach, or for a better description, the leader of the organization, has the ability to force adjustments. This team has been built according to Stefanski’s vision, all the way up to hiring the GM. Even he himself has admitted that he’s responsible for this, so why should we decide to give him a pass?

Mid season improvement is *absolutely* possible. Every year there are teams who get better in the second half and/or turn their season around after a difficult start.

The offense has been legitimately great. This year was chalked up as a lost one after the 11 game suspension because the offense was expected to be mediocre or worse. If you had told us here what the Browns’ offense metrics would look like 10 games in despite Watson’s suspension, we’d have said they could contend for the Super Bowl when he gets back because the Browns have the talent everywhere else on the roster to contend.

The head coach is not blameless when it comes to defense and special teams just because he calls plays. His hands off approach to those areas has failed, and as far as we know so far, he’s yet to change it. We’re grilling Woods for the same stubbornness when it comes to X’s and O’s, so I think it’s absolutely fair to be disappointed in Stefanski’s stubbornness to change from a managerial standpoint. It’s clear that the defensive locker room has been seriously damaged as a result, and some of that blame also lies on Kevin.
If the head of client support sucks, those above him plan to replace him and fix the issue.

You don't call for the CEO's head.

It's Stefanski's job to fix the defense--likely by replacing Woods.

If he doesn't do that this offseason, I'll have major, serious questions.
 

buzzdog

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Why does this have to be the case? Stefanski is the head coach, not the offensive coordinator. The guys coaching horribly in the other 2 phases of the game are not his peers. No, I’m not willing to throw my hands up and say, “aw shucks we need new ones.”

The head coach, or for a better description, the leader of the organization, has the ability to force adjustments. This team has been built according to Stefanski’s vision, all the way up to hiring the GM. Even he himself has admitted that he’s responsible for this, so why should we decide to give him a pass?

Mid season improvement is *absolutely* possible. Every year there are teams who get better in the second half and/or turn their season around after a difficult start.

The offense has been legitimately great. This year was chalked up as a lost one after the 11 game suspension because the offense was expected to be mediocre or worse. If you had told us here what the Browns’ offense metrics would look like 10 games in despite Watson’s suspension, we’d have said they could contend for the Super Bowl when he gets back because the Browns have the talent everywhere else on the roster to contend.

The head coach is not blameless when it comes to defense and special teams just because he calls plays. His hands off approach to those areas has failed, and as far as we know so far, he’s yet to change it. We’re grilling Woods for the same stubbornness when it comes to X’s and O’s, so I think it’s absolutely fair to be disappointed in Stefanski’s stubbornness to change from a managerial standpoint. It’s clear that the defensive locker room has been seriously damaged as a result, and some of that blame also lies on Kevin.
Excellent comment.

I don't think the defense is impossible to fix. I see teams lining up 10 guys within 5 yards of the line of scrimmage against us all the damn time, and when they read pass the right guys drop off and defend the pass. When they read run, all ten guys are up there trying to stuff it.

I don't see us doing that, ever. Do Stefanski and Woods ever watch game film to see how our opponents are fucking over our superb running game? Do they not know how to copy what works against us? With our supposedly excellent defensive backs we should be able to recover and defend even play action attacks. I just don't see us trying that, ever. I don't see us doing run blitzes to stuff gaps either, the way teams do against us. Very little blitzing at all, even though a talented defensive backfield should give you latitude to try to shake up the offense when they're cramming it down your throat.

And maybe in a particular game against a particular opponent that isn't the right approach. Then, you are paid to recognize that and make real time adjustments, and to have your players ready to execute those adjustments. But we don't adjust for shit on either side of the ball.

I don't see how it would have any negative effect if they shitcanned Woods right now, or I guess after the Tampa game. It would send a message to players who are lacking in focus and intensity. It would reflect directly on the players to haver their defensive coordinator fired during the season, and if that doesn't make them smell the coffee then nothing will, and you purge those guys from the roster.

But Stefanski is nothing if not a nice guy. He might just be the nicest guy ever. No way he would want to embarrass his buddy Joe Woods, would he? Or Priefer either? No, that's not his style. Stefanski could get in somebody's face (Woods and Priefer both) and demand they make adjustments that work. Maybe he has, but if so then those guys failed to produce results over and over again.

Does KS being an offensive minded head coach prohibit him from sitting and watching film with Woods, making recommendations and even demands for improvement? In my opinion that's right up there in his job description. If one of your reports is failing it makes you look bad and it's your responsibility as the head guy to assure effective corrective actions are being implemented. Has KS done that? I would say no. If he has even tried, then he has failed. If he hasn't tried then that's on him.

At some point Stefanski owns this shit show. For me that point happened after we lost about the third game that we should have won. For some of you I guess it's perfectly alright to continue to flush this season. Me, I want to see them try to win out, until any playoff hope is mathematically eliminated. One more loss and I think we're there. For a bunch of you I think you all gave up about 3 or 4 games ago. You do you.
 
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Cassity14

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If the head of client support sucks, those above him plan to replace him and fix the issue.

You don't call for the CEO's head.

It's Stefanski's job to fix the defense--likely by replacing Woods.

If he doesn't do that this offseason, I'll have major, serious questions.
I agree, but the CEO, or whoever is above the head of Client Support, should look into the drastically failing systems and propose solutions. He’s do so heavy handedly if required, even if he knew he were simply putting band aids in place.

The company wouldn’t allow him to let that area fail catastrophically with no intervention as they looked for a new hire.
 

Amherstcavsfan

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I agree, but the CEO, or whoever is above the head of Client Support, should look into the drastically failing systems and propose solutions. He’s do so heavy handedly if required, even if he knew he were simply putting band aids in place.

The company wouldn’t allow him to let that area fail catastrophically with no intervention as they looked for a new hire.
Here's my issue:

How do you know how involved Stefanski has been in trying to fix defensive problems and/or special teams problems?

The system is broken, due to injuries, players, and coaching flaws. Doesn't mean it should all lay at the feet of the head coach. Nor does it absolve him of blame.

He clearly deserves another year with a new DC/STC. If he fails in that hire again, then we can talk seriously about replacing him.
 

Cassity14

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Here's my issue:

How do you know how involved Stefanski has been in trying to fix defensive problems and/or special teams problems?

The system is broken, due to injuries, players, and coaching flaws. Doesn't mean it should all lay at the feet of the head coach. Nor does it absolve him of blame.

He clearly deserves another year with a new DC/STC. If he fails in that hire again, then we can talk seriously about replacing him.

I agree, and I made sure to reference that.

I do think the Browns have a couple good reporters, namely Jackson, who would shed light on that sort of thing. We’ve also seen little to no change on Sundays schematically which points to little direct intervention from Stefanski. Couple this with things the players are saying on the record, and I think one side clearly has more evidence, although it’s imperfect.

I am in no way saying Kevin Stefanski deserves all of the blame for this season. I simply don’t subscribe to the ‘not his job’, for lack of a better term, takes I see on here because the offense is his baby and is performing extremely well.
 

CBBI

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Gonna throw this out there and I suspect it won’t be a popular take…

I’m not totally convinced Stefanski would be allowed to fire Woods and/or Priefer during the season even if he wanted to.

I don’t think Stefanski wants to do it during the season anyway, but I have a feeling that decisions like that don’t happen unless DePodesta, Berry, Stefanski and ownership all mutually agree on it.
 

Out of the Rafters at the Q

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I agree, and I made sure to reference that.

I do think the Browns have a couple good reporters, namely Jackson, who would shed light on that sort of thing. We’ve also seen little to no change on Sundays schematically which points to little direct intervention from Stefanski. Couple this with things the players are saying on the record, and I think one side clearly has more evidence, although it’s imperfect.

I am in no way saying Kevin Stefanski deserves all of the blame for this season. I simply don’t subscribe to the ‘not his job’, for lack of a better term, takes I see on here because the offense is his baby and is performing extremely well.
I'll add on.

I'm perfectly okay with Stefanski never getting involved on the defensive end, outside of a supervisory capacity.

If Joe Woods owns that side of the ball, and Stefanski allows his DC to actually own that side without having the head coach micromanage, I think I prefer that.

There are few things that destroy an organization faster than having confusing leadership from the top. When you're not sure if Woods is in charge or if Stefanski is in charge, it's demoralizing and splintering.

If a CEO needs to get involved in the support organization, they should instead just relieve the head of that department and appoint someone who can make leadership decisions so that the CEO doesn't have to get involved.

There's no reason for the CEO to be directly involved in personnel decisions, just like there's no reason for Stefanski to be micromanaging that side of the ball.

Stefanski SHOULD be evaluating and managing the DC and the defensive coaches though. If he believes that there are deficiencies there (which I think it likely) then he should replace those positions.

I think that trigger should have already been pulled. I'm okay with it being pulled in the offseason. If it doesn't get pulled, I'm going to be concerned.
 

Triplethreat

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He doesn’t bother adjusting in game.

We get worse every second half.
 

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