Factors outside of the Cleveland Browns' control have provided significant hurdles in this team's way during the 2023 season. Yet, that hasn't stopped head coach Kevin Stefanski from putting this group in prime playoff position with a 7-4 record heading into Week 13.
The results he's helped pull off have been remarkable given the circumstances, it appears he's solidified his job security past this year as a result of his efforts.
The Athletic's Diana Russini reported on Stefanski's support within the organization over the weekend, noting he's "here to stay based on conversations with multiple league sources." GM Andrew Berry is too, according to Russini, who says, "The pressure was on this past season, and the duo has been able to navigate the choppy waters."
Berry and Stefanski both being under the microscope set the stage for changes to be made during or right after this season if the team didn't play up to its potential. No would could blame ownership if they did opt for a shakeup, either, considering the repeated win-now messaging from everyone around the Browns.
Yet both men have stepped up during a challenging season and risen above their circumstances. Most squads would have folded without their franchise quarterback, not even to mention the lack of a reliable No. 2, yet Cleveland has come out on top in games more often than not this season.
The job is far from finished, however. The AFC playoff picture is incredibly tight ahead of Week 13 with the Browns right in the middle at 7-4. Cleveland's getting no favors from its own division with the Baltimore Ravens going 9-3 and Pittsburgh Steelers going 7-4 to this point, which makes a top-four seed tougher to come by.
Meanwehile, there's four teams with at least six wins that are right on the Browns' heels, so they can't afford to slip up down the stretch. Judging by how this season has gone, though, Stefanski and Berry are more than capabale of keeping this squad right on track to close the year.
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