The Cleveland Browns won’t have their full coaching staff for the first round of the playoffs since Kevin Stefanski tested positive for COVID-19. Taking his place as the acting head coach for this Sunday will be Mike Priefer.
It’ll be tough to replace Stefanski, especially for a playoff game. However, the Browns have to be confident in Priefer’s familiarity with the offensive system.
Priefer knows Stefanski fairly well to say the least. They spent time together on Mike Zimmer’s coaching staff in Minnesota before eventually reuniting in Cleveland.
During a media session on Thursday, Priefer revealed his mindset for this Sunday’s matchup with the Pittsburgh Steelers. He said that situational coaching will play a huge factor, which is something he often discusses with Stefanski.
“Everybody’s different, but I’m going to try to be an extension of Kevin,” Priefer said. “He’s done a great job with the situational football – you guys know my background with him. We’ve learned a lot of football over the years together, talked situational football throughout the year, talked about it during the week and even on gameday.”
Mike Priefer, who will fill in as head coach for Kevin Stefanski on Sunday night, says he will “try to be an extension of Kevin,” when it comes to decision-making: “He’s done a great job with situational football. … I’m gonna try to do exactly what Kevin would want.” #Browns pic.twitter.com/dMxEr3hnbV
— Jake Trotter (@Jake_Trotter) January 7, 2021
Priefer will have his hands full on Sunday, but the good thing is he knows the winning formula for Cleveland.
The Browns are at their best when they’re running the football with Nick Chubb and Kareem Hunt. It then allows them to open up the passing game with play action.
We’ll find out soon if the Browns can pull off the upset in their first playoff appearance since 2002.
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