Browns Expected To Extend HC Kevin Stefanski, GM Andrew Berry

The Browns dealt with a slew of injuries on offense in particular during the 2023 campaign, but they still managed to qualify for the postseason. In the wake of that performance, continuity on the sidelines and in the front office is expected.

Head coach Kevin Stefanski and general manager Andrew Berry are each in line for extensions this offseason, ESPN’s Jeremy Fowler writes. The pair arrived in Cleveland in 2020 and are under contract through 2024. Their collective showings would make it little surprise if ownership signed off on a new set of deals in the near future.

Cleveland ended a lengthy playoff drought and advanced to the divisional round in Stefanski’s first campaign at the helm. He earned Coach of the Year honors that season, but the team’s record dropped to 8-9 and then 7-10 in subsequent years. Amidst whispers in some circles about he and/or Berry being on the hot seat, things did not go as planned with running back Nick Chubb suffering a season-ending injury in 2023. The same was later true of quarterback Deshaun Watson, leading the Browns to rely on Joe Flacco under center down the stretch.

The latter won Comeback Player of the Year for his showings after arriving as a free agent midseason, which has helped his value considerably. The Browns are interested in retaining the former Super Bowl MVP despite having Watson atop the depth chart. Stability at the QB spot in 2024 would be a welcomed development as the team looks to build off a record of 11-6.

Stefanski earned his second Coach of the Year award as a result of the Browns’ ability to reach the playoffs despite their injury woes. Watson’s ailment marked another underwhelming development in his Cleveland tenure, which of course has been the defining aspect of Berry’s time with the franchise. The Browns sent Houston a package including three first-round picks to acquire the three-time Pro Bowler, something which was contingent on a fully-guaranteed five-year, $230MM contract. Watson’s suspension to open the 2022 season, his elbow injury this year and less-than-spectacular play in between led some to believe a change could be made in the organization.

However, a December report pointed to the Stefanski-Berry partnership likely being safe moving forward. This latest update confirms that sentiment, and Cleveland will be set up for stability if extensions are indeed worked out in the coming months. Both will have notable leverage in negotiations given the team’s performance this season as they aim to take a step forward in 2024 and beyond.

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