Proof that Kevin Stefanski can adapt but chooses not to
Yes, the Cleveland Browns managed Case Keenum and the offense to a win. No doubt, Keenum did everything the Browns asked him to do, and they only asked him to do what he did because they knew he couldn’t do more. They adapted. They adapted and they excelled.
So why didn’t Kevin Stefanski adapt throughout the season? Baker Mayfield’s shoulder was roasted and while I stand by the idea that an injured Mayfield is better than a healthy-Keenum, that doesn’t mean that the Browns couldn’t adapt to Mayfield. His touch was off for most of the year. Simple passes he’s made before were just off due to a combination of his busted shoulder and the harness keeping it in. Everyone who saw Mayfield play this year knew that it wasn’t the same player as they saw in years past.
They were right.
Stefanski knew that Keenum couldn’t test backups on the Bengals, so he rushed the ball 18 times more in Week 18 than they did in Week 9, and that’s because of the talent he had on the field. He knew the Browns needed to run the ball more, so he did.
He knew the Browns needed to limit Mayfield‘s throwing in key games down the stretch and he didn’t. The question as to why he felt the need to throw the ball nearly 36 times per game across Mayfield’s final four games is still head-scratching.