Maybe his ascension to the ranks of the NFL’s head coaches was too fast. While Freddie Kitchens appeared to be ready after reviving the Browns offense down the stretch last season, maybe he wasn’t. It would seem awful fast even to be thinking about firing him, but with how the season has played out so far, could the Cleveland Browns be thinking about doing just that?
It is unusual for a head coach to get fired after one season. But could Kitchens actually get canned before finishing his first year?
Bovada.lv seems to think it could be a possibility in the wake of all the admitted snafus Kitchens made during Sunday night’s loss to the Rams. Their oddsmakers have posed the following wager on Kitchens and his future with the team:
Who Will Be The Browns Head Coach For Their Week 8 Game On At New England?
- Freddie Kitchens -3000
- Todd Monken +1000
- Steve Wilks +800
- Mike McCarthy +2500
With the odds they have given Kitchens, he has about a 97 percent chance of keeping his job—which sounds about right.
The Browns were one of the most hyped teams in recent years during the offseason. Many sportsbooks reported taking more bets on the Browns to win the Super Bowl before the start of the season than any other team. Baker Mayfield was a favorite to win MVP this year, and Kitchens even had good odds to win Coach of the Year.
What the heck happened?
In a nutshell, the hype was a little too much. The Browns acquired a ton of new pieces in the offseason, including their head coach. It takes time for a new head coach to find his way and even more time for a new team to figure out how to play together.
Thinking these guys were going to be a Super Bowl contender this season was simply unfair. But the Browns have fired a head coach mid-season before. They could do it again. If they did, who would get the job?
Mike McCarthy had his chance and turned it down. Chances are the team would look within for an interim head coach anyway. Monken, the current offensive coordinator, doesn’t have any head coaching experience in the NFL and hasn’t really been coaching in the NFL for very long.
Wilks, however, does have one season as a head coach under his belt (albeit a poor one in Arizona last season). But he has been coaching in the NFL since 2006. After taking a chance on a relatively inexperienced Kitchens, if they fired him, it is more likely that the team goes with Wilks instead.
So, the question now becomes whether the Browns could fire Kitchens prior to Week Eight. It can be dangerous to use logic when contemplating anything an NFL team may or may not do. But firing Kitchens during the season is a ludicrous notion.
Has he made mistakes? Sure—he’s admitted that much. Just like we expect players to get a chance to learn from their mistakes, the same should be true with first-year head coaches. Besides, the Browns didn’t fire Hue Jackson after he led the Browns to a 1-31 record over two seasons.
There is no way they fire Kitchens during the season. He will still be the head coach in Week Eight.