The Browns' offense thrived with Kitchens as offensive coordinator, with rookie quarterback Baker Mayfield and rookie running back Nick Chubb both finishing their rookie campaigns with record-setting seasons.
The Cleveland Browns are keeping it internal when it comes to their new head coach.
In eight games under Kitchens, Mayfield threw 19 touchdown passes, 8 interceptions, and was sacked just five times, compared to 8/6/20 in the first eight games. He has been a part of the Cleveland Indians coverage since the opening of Jacobs/Progressive Field in 1994, and spent two and a half years covering the team for 92.3 The Fan, and covers them daily for Associated Press Radio. They went 5-3 down the stretch under interim head coach Gregg Williams. During that time, Browns rookie quarterback Baker Mayfield saw his numbers dramatically improve. I'm not going to get involved. They won seven games in 2018 and hired offensive coordinator Freddie Kitchens as their next head coach.
It's hard to suss out how much of that was due to Kitchens and how much was due to (a) Mayfield coming into his own after reliving Tyrod Taylor in Week 3 and getting his first start in Week 4; and (b) the front office's decision to trade Carlos Hyde, which thrust Chubb into the lineup. Back when he was on Bruce Arians' staff in Arizona in 2013, he felt two pops in his chest, his vision blurred, and he went numb.
Kitchens, who had his interview Monday, was one of seven candidates in the first round of interviews. The Browns also interviewed former Lions head coach Jim Caldwell, Saints tight ends coach Dan Campbell, Colts defensive coordinator Matt Eberflus, and Patriots defensive coordinator Brian Flores for the job.
An official announcement from the Browns announcing Kitchens is expected later this afternoon.