Freddie Kitchens defends decision to keep Baker Mayfield in blowout

Getty Images

The Browns took a 23-3 lead with 3:32 remaining in the third quarter. Yet, Baker Mayfield played all 69 snaps as backup quarterback Garrett Gilbert remained on the sideline.

Coach Freddie Kitchens said he never considered taking out Mayfield.

“No. He’s our quarterback,’’ Kitchens said, via Mary Kay Cabot of cleveland.com. “I wanted to make that last third down. Not to say that Garrett couldn’t, but I wanted Baker to do it.’’

There were obvious reasons why the prudent thing would have been to pull Mayfield. Odell Beckham called out Jets defensive coordinator Gregg Williams earlier in the week for dialing up dirty hits, and the Browns saw how injures can happen when Jets quarterback Trevor Siemian was injured on an illegal hit by Myles Garrett.

But Kitchens said his philosophy is to play until the clock hits zero no matter the score.

“We’re going to finish the game,’’ Kitchens said. “That’s what we preach is finish the game, and that’s what we’re trying to do. We were trying to get a first down.”

24 responses to “Freddie Kitchens defends decision to keep Baker Mayfield in blowout

  1. Wheres the outrage when Tom Brady is up 35 playing some awful team and the Patriots are still throwing. Freddie does it and he is the worst coach ever, bill does it and he is an aggressive mastermind.

  2. 20 point lead in 3rd quarter is considered a blowout where the QB should be pulled?? I don’t think so.

  3. Really? Anyone ask Belichick why Brady was throwing deep passes with 4:25 left in the game up 37-0?

  4. Garrett should be suspended. Should have been ejected. Dirty, dirty player. Suh level of filth.

  5. Since when is a 20 point lead a blowout? Have any of these people asking these questions ever played a competitive sport in their lives? Doesn’t seem so. How soft has this “everyone gets a trophy” society become? Players play, some get injured, it’s the nature of the beast.

  6. Yeah, Freddie. Ignore all the advice learned by many better coaches that pull their players in blowout wins. Your strategy is clearly better than those Superbowl winning coaches that have already learned the lessons you intentionally ignore.

    He also put Chubb back in the game after getting checked for a concussion at the 3 minute mark. Then he called running plays to send the point to the team that his RBs brain doesn’t matter.

  7. They were just trying to prove a point and rub it in with the Gregg Williams, Odell Beckham drama. Not a smart decision, but luckily no one was hurt, if so we would be looking at a totally different story.

  8. A very Browns thing to do would have been to pull him and then lose the game. Happy these are not quite the same old Browns.
    A long time awaiting for the Browns fans.

    Miami is on the clock.

  9. Regardless of what he says its pretty much indefensible to still be throwing with your starter up twenty with two minutes to go. I know he’s a first year head coach but he’s been around the game long enough to know better don’t overthink it take care of your own livelihood and take a knee.

  10. I think Freddie knows the offense isn’t fully clicking in rhythm and he was using garbage time as practice time. Still a questionable decision. That sack Mayfield took looked dangerous with lots of guys around his legs…

  11. The game WAS finished at 23-3. You got what you asked for. The job was done ,even if the scoreboard had more time on it. 4th grade math should have come into play.

    Mayfield got caught in one of those sprained ankle/knee situations on that 3rd down. That should be a ‘lucky moment’ epiphany and never happen again. Clock management is more than critical time outs and hurry ups. It’s about understanding waste, any kind of it.

    Throwing on that 3rd down was wrong on many different levels. No need, rolling the dice, running it up,…your choice. Punt and pull your best D players. 2nd team D players need reps too (and Gilbert). Why wouldn’t that be more prudent and beneficial that ‘one more play’? Ever get hurt on that last extra push up, or chainsaw cut or that last whatever? Bad things happen when you want ‘one more’. The game WAS over. You DID finish.

  12. Super Bowl LI Atlanta 28 NE 3 with 2 minutes left in the 3rd quarter. Guess Quinn should’ve pulled Matt Ryan at that point.

  13. For those asking since when is a 23-3 lead a blowout the score was a lot closer than the game actually was. The Browns own offensive ineptitude and downright head scratching offensive play calling in the first half is the only reason they didn’t put up 30+, the Jets might as well not have even showed up.

    Freddie Kitchens apparently went to the Pete Carroll school of “I have an unstoppable running back and am in the red zone or it’s 3rd and inches so definitely call a passing play.”

  14. I found Cleveland really interesting beginning last year with hard Knocks, John Doresey, and drafting Baker Mayfield #1. They were a fun team to watch. This year though it seems they have gotten a bit full of themselves. Freddie Kitchens sees like an arrogant jerk, there is no stadium big enough for Baker Mayfields ego, Miles Garret seems like a dirty player, OBJ is well OBJ, and they are an incredibly unlikeable team. I have become uninterested, they have morphed into the 2017 Steelers.

  15. Mayfield wasn’t having a good game, maybe the HC wanted him to get more reps and work through it.
    Also, a pick 6, and a stop, and then the other team scoring a TD and its a 1TD game.
    Not likely but could happen.

  16. People are ripping him about Baker still in and throwing late because Coach says he wants to limit the hits on Baker.Yet says they will play to end of the game…Guy is talking out of both sides of his mouth

  17. Nobody is questioning why he was was in the game in Q3. But 3 minutes left in the game, he should have been wearing a ball cap, I dont care what Freddie says. If Baker broke his hand on that last sack, fans would be screaming right now.

Leave a Reply

You must be logged in to leave a comment. Not a member? Register now!

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.