NFL Rumors: Cleveland Browns Nearing Extensions With Head Coach, General Manager

The Cleveland Browns are ready for a major commitment. Speaking on Monday, Browns owners Jimmy and Dee Haslam revealed they're nearing extensions for head coach Kevin Stefanski and general manager Andrew Berry.

Stefanski and Berry both landed their jobs with the Browns in 2020. They've led the Browns to their most fruitful era since the franchise rejoined the league in 1999, amassing a 37-30 record and earning the team their first and only playoff win since 1995 following the 2020 season. That's modest success by the standards of many franchises, but it's revelatory for the Browns.

That Stefanski and Berry are on the precipice of new deals speaks to the remarkable roster they've put together in Cleveland. The Browns finished first in yards allowed last year, and they've fielded routinely dominant run games with four-time Pro Bowl running back Nick Chubb and a star-stuffed offensive line.

Unfortunately for the Browns, Stefanski and Berry have yet to find an answer at the game's most important position. Their failure to shape former first overall pick Baker Mayfield into a franchise quarterback begat a dramatic trade and controversial five-year, $230 million fully guaranteed contract for Deshaun Watson. That's shaping up to be one of the most disastrous transactions in NFL history: Watson has appeared in 12 games in two years while averaging a mere 184.8 passing yards per game and a miserable 5.36 net yards per passing attempt.

Despite those struggles, the Browns are tantalizingly close to building a true contender: They've won eight of those 12 games Watson has played, and mid-season addition Joe Flacco managed to win four of five regular-season starts last year. Even adequate quarterback play could be enough to put the Browns over the top. Whether Stefanski and Berry can find it will determine just how long they stick around in Cleveland.

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