The Cleveland Browns just had their greatest margin of victory under Kevin Stefanski following the team’s 20-point win over the Chicago Bears Sept. 26.
Everything that could go right, pretty much did.
Some may find it hard to criticize the reigning coach of the year, especially after his team is off to a 2-1 start.
ESPN Cleveland’s Tony Grossi questioned Stefanski’s decision to dedicate plays to Demetric Felton, over Kareem Hunt, in the early part of the game.
I believe Grossi was referencing the first and second drives. Hunt was on the field for one play, and at the end of the drive, on 3rd and 5, Felton was brought onto the field with three receivers in an empty formation.
On the second series, On 1st-and-10 from the Browns 42, Baker Mayfield hit Felton on a short pass that went for a 13 yards. Moments later, on 3rd and 1 from the Bears’ 20, it was Felton who Mayfield threw a pass to that went incomplete.
Grossi’s big point was questioning why Felton was eating into Hunt’s reps. He talked about his concern on the station’s Really Big Show. He couldn’t understand why the offense would take its second best player off the field for a sixth-round rookie, as talented as he may be. sub
“I’m saying, why would you keep Kareem Hunt off the field. That’s his play right there, right. Then, on the second series, the same thing happened on the critical third down,” Grossi said, via TheLandonDemand.com (Subscription required).
Hunt returned to the game and was far and away, the Browns’ offensive MVP. He ran the ball 10 times for 81 yards, while also adding six catches for 74 yards. In the postgame, Baker Mayfield talked about how Hunt ran angry. Grossi suggested how it might have something to do with waiting behind Felton, even if for just a couple plays.
Grossi asked Stefanski about the personnel decision, and the coach, as you’d guess, promptly shot him down.
"“There are some plays that we will have for Demetric each game as his role will grow as he earns his role. I would not read into it more than that,” Stefanski told Grossi."
Grossi followed up, asking Stefanski if “angry” Hunt was a product of watching Felton from the sideline, via WKYC-TV.
"“I do not think so, but I like an angry Kareem Hunt so I will make a mental note of that (laughter).”"
Of course, this is what you’d expect Stefanski to say, but Grossi’s point is valid. Hunt isn’t that far removed from being the league’s rushing champ, and reminded of it every game.
In Stefanski’s defense, though, you can see why Stefanski’s trying to get him into the flow of the game. His hips go one direction and his legs go another. He’s a weapon the coach is trying to utilize. If it motivates someone with Hunt’s stature, all the better.
Probably a story about nothing, but at the very least, the coach is on the record with this one.