The Browns are slated to talk to offensive coordinator Freddie Kitchens on Monday or Tuesday about their head coaching vacancy, Ian Rapoport of NFL.com (on Twitter) hears. The interview is more than just due diligence – Rapoport hears that Kitchens has a realistic chance at securing the job.
Multiple teams have expressed interest in Kitchens as an offensive coordinator candidate, but the Browns have so far denied those requests. That’s an indication that the Browns see Kitchens as a real candidate for the top job. At the very least, the Browns believe they’ll want to keep him in the fold going forward, though an outside big name head coaching hire may want to pick his own OC.
Kitchens never called plays before Hue Jackson and Todd Haley got the boot, but quarterback Baker Mayfield soared under his tutelage once he got the headset. The Browns were reinvigorated with Kitchens and interim head coach Gregg Williams running the show and managed to finish the second half 5-3.
As shown in PFR’s Head Coaching Tracker, Kitchens is going up against several candidates who have a leg up when it comes to experience:
- Jim Caldwell, former head coach (Lions): Interviewed on 1/2
- Dan Campbell, assistant head coach/tight ends (Saints): Interviewed on 1/4
- Matt Eberflus, defensive coordinator (Colts): Interviewed on 1/6
- Brian Flores, defensive coordinator (Patriots): Interviewed on 1/5
- Mike McCarthy, former head coach (Packers): To be interviewed
- Mike Munchak, offensive line coach (Steelers): Expected to interview
- Nick Sirianni, offensive coordinator (Colts): Expected to interview
- Kevin Stefanski, offensive coordinator (Vikings): Interviewed on 1/3
- Gregg Williams, interim head coach/defensive coordinator (Browns): Interviewed on 1/1
Photo courtesy of USA Today Sports Images.