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Freddie Kitchens to go down swinging

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Facing what could be his last game in charge, Browns HC will still call the plays on offense against the Bengals.

Cleveland Browns v Arizona Cardinals Photo by Christian Petersen/Getty Images

The Cleveland Browns will close out a disappointing 2019 regular season on Sunday when they hit the road to take on the Cincinnati Bengals.

Sunday’s game may also mark the final one for head coach Freddie Kitchens, who appears poised to become the second “one-and-done” head coach for the Browns since co-owners Jimmy and Dee Haslam purchased the franchise in 2012.

If that is the case, Kitchens plans to go down swinging as he has no intention of giving up play-calling duties for the afternoon to offensive coordinator Todd Monken, according to clevelandbrowns.com:

“We are going to always evaluate and do the thing that gives us the best chance to win so no. I think Todd has done a good job all year of keeping us on course during the course of the week. I just feel more comfortable calling the plays right now. Nothing against Todd. Todd would do an excellent job of calling the plays, but we are focused this week on just getting better at what we have been doing.”

On the one hand, you have to give Kitchens credit for continuing to believe in himself, even if very others do, and wanting to close out the season on his own terms.

On the other hand, the Browns enter the season’s final game ranked:

  • 18th in total yards, with 342.8 per game
  • 15th in yards per play at 5.6
  • 20th in third-down conversions at 37 percent
  • 3rd of offensive penalties, with 118
  • 22nd in scoring, with 20.8 points per game

While it would not change the course of the season, given those numbers it is fair to wonder what harm would result from trying something different in the final game of the season.