Brad Childress: Kevin Stefanski has “seen about everything”

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Kevin Stefanski is 37 years old, and just took a job which no one has succeeded in for decades.

And yet, those who know him think he’s prepared for what’s to come, such that anyone can really prepare for being coach of the Cleveland Browns.

Former Vikings head coach Brad Childress, one of Stefanski’s mentors in the business, thinks the experiences he had during his wild time in Minnesota should be enough to steady him.

“There’s not much that’s going to ruffle him, because he’s seen about everything from us coming in there on the tails of the Love Boat to Randy Moss walking out the door,’’ Childress said, via Mary Kay Cabot of the Cleveland Plain Dealer.

While Stefanski did have a ringside seat for some tumultuous times in Minnesota as Childress’ administrative assistant, Childress also pointed to his years of growing up in the sports business as a signal the job wouldn’t be too big for him. Stefanski’s father Ed’s a long-time NBA executive.

“That role sitting outside the head coach’s office, you’re not only a gatekeeper, but you’re doing everything from football to talking to the owners to talking to the G.M. to talking to the salary cap guy,’’ Childress said. “You’re intervening with the offensive and defensive staffs and he had an aptitude for all of that. None of that was too big for him. He was authoritative. People listened to him when he talked and he knew what he was talking about more than anything.”

All those things should serve him well, but the Browns have been a rather unique challenge for years.

35 responses to “Brad Childress: Kevin Stefanski has “seen about everything”

  1. He will fail because of the owner. The Browns are perennial losers because of ownership. Just like the Mets, Knicks and other teams with unfortunate owners.

  2. I hope he succeeds. Cue the haters.

    PS – Cleveland media needs to ease off all their negative reporting even before the guy stepped foot in the building.

  3. Maybe so, and that all sounds good but he is going into a situation where he is working for an owner that doesnt know and a GM that is a baseball/analytics guy. On top of that you will have to deal with a supposed GM that will be Depodestas eyes and ears when he is in La Jolla….Who the hell has the #2 man in charge of the organization that is not even a full time resident of the city?

  4. There’s not much that’s going to ruffle him, because he’s seen about everything
    You ain’t seen nothing yet b-b-b-baby. Its the Browns.

  5. Good luck. Cleveland Homer’s think people are scared of the analytics and just being naysayers. We went from numbers guy in sashi, to river boat gambler john Dorsey. Now we are back to a sashi like guy. But this time the plan isnt to lose amd get draft picks. Depodesta might be one of the most overrated people in the organization next to Odell. He is lucky he is never in berea ohio, if he was jimmy would tire of him and his second guessing. All depodesta has done is say he would be right in hindsight. Easy to sit on your computer in California and tell the owner you were right. Depodesta is the kinda guy to say he knew sure fire tom brady would be great. All his best work is in hindsight. As far as stefanski. Good luck with depodesta second guessing you from cali, amd having the owners ear. The guy may be smart but his offense was bland and predictable, they were unable to make adjustments. Just handing off a bunch and trying to hide cousins wasnt a hard job. Now he is walking into real pressure for the first time. Dorsey wasnt a good team builder but either is depodesta, somewhere in the middle would be nice. But jimmy haslem is a big part of why the browns are perennially bad.

  6. I was all about Josh McDaniels. Stefanski was relatively unknown to me. However, the more I read up, the more I like what I see.

    Let’s give this guy a chance, Browns fans. Hopefully the Haslams will too.

    And Chris Simms…jeez, simmer down just a bit. You and Florio’s idea that the Browns were going to hire either Stefanski or Saleh, depending on who lost the MIN-SF game? Really? What a simpleton thing to guess, and then act like it’s fact. Good grief.

  7. Kevin Stefanski is 37 years old, and just took a job which no one has succeeded in for decades.

    Greg Williams was 5-3 as Clevelands interim head coach in 2018.

  8. There is a steep learning curve from “worker” to “boss”. Some make the transition well, others, not so well. Ego gets the best of many. Hopefully, Stefanski remains humble and makes the transition well. For the Browns sake.

  9. He has seen everything except the dysfunction that is the Cleveland Browns! His buddy the baseball guy having a direct report in the coaches box on a headset, how could that go wrong!

  10. I think Cleveland media are the biggest naysayers for the Browns. They have only stirred the pot and have never wholeheartedly stood by their teams (especially the Browns). Not sure why. The national media and the other players pick up on this and creates a challenging environment for the team to succeed.
    I agree the decisions made by the team have not worked so far, but I am sure no one makes decisions hoping for it to fail. Let’s hope for the best and give the coach, the G.M. some time to establish themselves and settle down. Don’t run them out of town before they have even landed in Cleveland. Go Browns!!

  11. Correction: Gregg Williams succeeded. Then they fired him.

    Stefanski has been set up to fail, but that’s the way the Browns roll.

  12. billzbubb says:
    January 14, 2020 at 11:26 am
    Correction: Gregg Williams succeeded. Then they fired him.

    Stefanski has been set up to fail, but that’s the way the Browns roll.

    What makes you think that Greg W succeeded? Is it because he was interim coach when Browns won a few games? With that argument, Kitchens also succeeded and won a few games. Why was Greg W not on the short list of candidates being interviewed for head coach by other teams? So were the other owners also ignorant?

  13. Lest we forget Art Modell fired Bellichek, and then took the team to Baltimore in the middle of the night?

  14. Stefanski is just not a better hire than Roman or Bieniemy . I mean Stefanski playing calling in Minnesota was basic best of luck to the Browns but just don’t see him as being a good or successful head coach let’s hope I’m wrong .

  15. Cleveland will play well. Stefanski has been mentored since 2004. He will be just fine. He is not the reason the Vikings got worked by SF. When your left guard & center get rolled over & bowled across the field like a ball right into the RB within a half second of the ball being hiked, you need new lineman.

    Pat Elflein isn’t an NFL caliber player. Quite frankly either is Bradbury & Reiff needs to be replaced.

    Spielman should be on the phone right now with the Redskins

  16. If I were the Browns I would hurry up , and reach out to LSU OC , and Saints former OC Joe Brady for the offensive coordinator job in Cleveland .

  17. Stefanski is a good person, even-keeled, adaptable and smart. He was a good soldier in MN under several regimes, so that bodes well for his ability to work with a meddling incompetent owner and a baseball stat geek. Most Vikings fans wish him all the best; however, most folks remain skeptical given Stefanski’s lack of HC experience, the questionable ownership and the requirement that the analytics department participate in game day decisions.

  18. Brad “Colonel Klink” Childress has a point. If your job is to manage a dysfunctional team, what better training ground than to come from the Minnesota Vikings. Assuming for the moment that he has a defined shelf life at the new job, my prediction is that he will end his first head coaching stint with the exact same number of Lombardi trophies as the Vikings.

  19. “Has Childress been hired on McCarthy’s staff in Dallas yet?” They’re waiting to hear back from Jerry Glanville……

  20. “And now he’s seen how an NFL coach can be neutered.”

    I don’t see how seeing Zimmer get neutered by San Francisco makes Stefanski any more or less qualified.

  21. I laugh when people say Stefansky called basic plays. He basically wants to implement the same kind of offense the 49ers have. The difference is the Vikings didn’t have 5 years of draft picks to get the cream of the crop defensive players found earlier in the 1st round of the draft that pressured Cousins and stuffed the run game…

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