Cleveland Browns coach Freddie Kitchens broke out a strange play call late on Sunday night in their 20-13 loss to the Los Angeles Rams and failed miserably, a move that left fans extremely confused.
On a fourth-and-9 early in the fourth quarter, with the Browns down four points at FirstEnergy Stadium, Kitchens called for a draw — attempting to have running back Nick Chubb run for the first down out of the shotgun and keep their drive alive.
Obviously, it didn’t work out. Chubb made it just 2 yards before he was brought down.
Maybe Kitchens was trying to catch the Rams off guard by calling a run there. Maybe he knows something we don’t. Regardless, the play call was extremely unusual.
In fact, it’s so unusual that it was the first time a draw play has been called on a fourth-and-9 or longer since ESPN started video tracking in the NFL.
So… since ESPN began video tracking the NFL in 2007, there has never been a draw play called on 4th and 9 or more, according to @ESPNStatsInfo
— Jake Trotter (@Jake_Trotter) September 23, 2019
Kitchens said after the game that the draw was in fact the play he wanted to run, and that it was just a “bad call.”
“It just didn’t work. It was a bad call,” Kitchens said. “We’re trying to win the game and we’re on that side of the field. Bad call.”
— Ƒunhouse (@BackAftaThis) September 23, 2019
Fans quickly take to social media
Almost instantly after the failed play, fans took to social media to express their immense confusion and frustration with Kitchens.
— Yahoo Sports NFL (@YahooSportsNFL) September 23, 2019
Freddie Kitchens should have asked Madden there imo
— Ricky Sanders (@RSandersDFS) September 23, 2019
Live look at Freddie Kitchens on that 4th and 9 call... pic.twitter.com/QkXgYWG0Ej
— McNeil (@Reflog_18) September 23, 2019
Freddie Kitchens just ran a draw on fourth and nine near midfield in a four point game. Bro
— Will Brinson (@WillBrinson) September 23, 2019
A.....halfback draw.....on 4th......and 9 pic.twitter.com/6wLaAXlNxX
— The MMQB (@theMMQB) September 23, 2019
Coach calling for a draw on fourth-and-nine. pic.twitter.com/aMSdQPsh1c
— Sporting News (@sportingnews) September 23, 2019
Freddie Kitchens calling plays from the sideline like... pic.twitter.com/9LZzhPrL0p
— The Action Network (@ActionNetworkHQ) September 23, 2019
"He fakes to the left. No. He fakes to the right. He doesn't fake. He thinks about faking. He pretends to fake... I don't know where I am." - Freddie Kitchens on 4th and 9 pic.twitter.com/OthySK40hT
— Pick Six Podcast (@picksixpod) September 23, 2019
Freddie Kitchens looks like a guy who'd call a straight handoff on 4th & 9. #Browns
— Kevin Lewis (@TheKevinLewis) September 23, 2019
— Dave Ross (@drosssports) September 23, 2019
Freddie Kitchens with the old NCAA 14 computer play-calling there on third and fourth down ...
— Orion Sang (@orion_sang) September 23, 2019
Us: “How can the NFL coaching get any worse today?”
Freddie Kitchens: “Hold my beer.”
— Bill Simmons (@BillSimmons) September 23, 2019
How the Browns could go through a coaching search and believe their best option was Freddie Kitchens ... it truly bottles the mind pic.twitter.com/CjRz6fKRIw
— Peter Bukowski (@Peter_Bukowski) September 23, 2019
In his defense, it would have been historic had Chubb pulled it off and kept that drive alive.
Why Kitchens decided to risk that with the game on the line, however, is anybody’s guess.
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