The Cleveland Browns are planning to hire Vikings offensive coordinator Kevin Stefanski as their head coach, a source confirmed to ESPN.
BEREA, Ohio -- The Cleveland Browns are planning to hire Vikings offensive coordinator Kevin Stefanski as their head coach, a source confirmed to ESPN.
Stefanski, 37, will replace Freddie Kitchens, whom the Browns fired on Dec. 29 after only one season and a 6-10 record. Stefanski was a finalist for the Cleveland job last year as well, before the team promoted Kitchens from interim offensive coordinator instead.
NFL Network first reported the Browns' plan to hire Stefanski.
The Vikings fell 27-10 to the San Francisco 49ers in the divisional round Saturday, clearing the way for Cleveland to officially move forward with Stefanski.
The Browns met with eight candidates, including 49ers defensive coordinator Robert Saleh. They also interviewed Mike McCarthy, whom the Dallas Cowboyslater hired to be their head coach, Baltimore Ravens offensive coordinator Greg Roman, Kansas City Chiefs offensive coordinator Eric Bieniemy, Buffalo Billsoffensive coordinator Brian Daboll, Philadelphia Eagles defensive coordinator Jim Schwartz and New England Patriots offensive coordinator Josh McDaniels.
The Browns did not overreact to Saturday's performance of Stefanski's offense, which managed just 147 yards of total offense and allowed six sacks.
Stefanski becomes the franchise's 18th head coach, but already the 12th (including interim head coaches) since the Browns returned to the NFL in 1999. Stefanski will also be the fifth head coach that owners Jimmy and Dee Haslam have hired since purchasing the team in 2012.
The Haslams are still searching for a new general manager to pair with Stefanski in the wake of firing John Dorsey on Dec. 31 after just two years.