Stefanski Is First Browns Coach Since Belichick To Get To Year 5

    The Cleveland Browns have been a historically down-trodden franchise, and it shows in their history of head coaches. But current lead man Kevin Stefanski has seen positive results during his first four years at the helm, including two playoff appearances and a Wild Card win over the Steelers back in 2020. The Browns rewarded him with a contract extension on Wednesday, keeping him around for an all-important fifth year and beyond.

    Browns Extend Stefanski, Joins Belichick In Making It To Year 5

    Including interims, Cleveland has had twelve different head coaches since returning to the league in 1999. None of them stayed for very long, with the longest tenured being Romeo Crennel who made it to Year 4. You’d have to go all the way back to the early 1990s to find a Browns coach that made it to a 5th year, and that would be Bill Belichick, who coached from 1991 until 1995. Stefanski is the first to achieve the feat since then.

    Cleveland enjoyed a late surge during the 2023 NFL regular season, reeling off four straight wins in December in order to secure a Wild Card playoff spot. They wound up losing to the Houston Texans during the postseason’s opening weekend, but the fight and resolve in the late going gave some hope heading into the 2024 season and beyond.

    Can Cleveland Compete In The AFC North In 2024?

    They have a talented roster, but there will be plenty of questions surrounding the Browns this coming year. Much of the success that they enjoyed last season was with newly-signed Joe Flacco leading the way, and the team will turn back to Deshaun Watson to be their offensive leader, who has failed to live up to expectations thus far in Cleveland.

    Playing in arguably the toughest division in football will make things tough for the Browns. Three of the teams in the AFC North qualified for the postseason last year, and Joe Burrow will be returning to the Bengals in 2024, making winning the division an even further uphill climb.

    The sportsbooks have the Browns finishing somewhere around the .500 mark, as their over/under win total is currently set at 8.5.

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