The Browns have hired Freddie Kitchens to be their head coach. Soon after that move was announced, the Browns let go of most of their assistant coaches including OL coach Bob Wylie and TE coach Greg Seamon. In this article, we will try to connect some dots and suggest five possible assistant coaches that Freddie Kitchens could bring in.
Stump Mitchell, RB Coach
The Browns are among a few teams that have asked permission to speak to Mitchell for their staff. Mitchell and Kitchens worked together in Arizona from 2013 – 2016. Mitchell played in the NFL from 1981 – 1990 and since has coached in high school, college and the NFL. Whether the Browns get Mitchell or not, expect current RB coach Ryan Lindley to be moved to QB coach.
Bob Sanders, Defensive Coordinator
Sanders has been a coach since 1978. He has been a defensive coordinator in the NFL before from 2006 – 2008 for the Green Bay Packers. Since then he’s worked in Buffalo, Oakland and Arizona as a linebackers coach. He recently got hired to be the defensive coordinator for the AAF’s Orlando Apollos, but much like Kliff Kingsbury, I suspect that he could be coaxed into joining an NFL team as defensive coordinator.
Larry Foote, LB Coach
Larry Foote as a linebacker coach is partially predicated on Bob Sanders as defensive coordinator. They worked together as linebacker coaches where Bob handled the inside linebackers while Larry took care of the outside linebackers from 2015 – 2018 in Arizona. Foote also has a long history in the AFC North against the Browns as he was a linebacker for the Pittsburgh Steelers for years.
Steve Heiden, OL Coach or TE Coach
Since 2013, Heiden has been both an assistant tight end coach and more recently an assistant offensive line coach. Heiden could be put in either position and should be able to succeed. Additionally, joining Freddie Kitchens’ staff would be a home-coming as Heiden played tight end for the Browns from 2002 – 2009.
Chris Palmer, Offensive Assistant
Speaking of a home-coming, bringing in Chris Palmer, who was the head coach of the Browns when they returned in 1999, would be helpful on a few levels. Palmer has been coaching since 1972 and has a lot of experience. In 2006, Palmer was the QB coach in Dallas and worked with Freddie Kitchens, who was the TE coach that year. Additionally, Palmer’s short tenure with the Browns ended poorly and many feel he didn’t get a fair chance. Bringing Palmer in would give Freddie an experienced former head coach who can help with some of the things that he will inevitably need.