The Cleveland Browns made one major move on Monday after the 2022 NFL season ended but that move may not be the final one. The Browns fired DC Joe Woods and sought to interview a number of candidates for their newly opened position.
As we tried to gather information Sunday night into Monday morning, special teams coordinator Mike Priefer’s future was still a mystery. A toss-up, 50/50 or 60/40 chance he would be fired seemed to disappear as the day went on with no move.
We even got a report that no major moves were expected following Woods’ departure.
Then GM Andrew Berry and HC Kevin Stefanski had their press conference where they talked a lot about the decision made to fire Woods and a variety of other topics. One of which was Priefer’s future where Stefanski was far from committal about bringing him back:
#Browns Kevin Stefanski when asked if they'll retain ST Coordinator Mike Priefer said he hasn't gotten a chance to sit down with every coach and "those are all things we're working through."— Camryn Justice (@camijustice) January 9, 2023
The timing would be interesting because the team was able to make a decision about Woods very quickly but with Priefer a discussion would have to be had still. Perhaps Cleveland will request Priefer makes certain changes or he will be let go. Perhaps the Browns are waiting to get an inclination if someone they want to bring in to replace him is interested before they pull the trigger.
Priefer’s time with Cleveland spans two coaching staffs and includes limited success overall. Last year, Chase McLaughlin had one of the worst field goal percentages in the league but kicked better for Indianapolis this season. Cade York struggled after being drafted in the fourth round while free agent punter Corey Bojorquez was inconsistent.
Coverage units rarely pinned opponents and return units often were flagged for holding and blocks in the back.
Not a lot of positives on the field that defends keeping Priefer around but, at least as of Monday, he still had his job. Perhaps a conversation with Stefanski changes that reality tomorrow.
We will update you as soon as we have more information.