Get to know new Browns’ offensive coordinator Ken Dorsey

The Cleveland Browns have their new offensive coordinator as Ken Dorsey joins Kevin Stefanski’s staff.

After four seasons with Alex Van Pelt manning the offensive coordinator position, the Browns felt the need to bring in a new face and fresh perspective to keep their championship window alive.

After a year-and-a-half as the offensive coordinator of the Buffalo Bills, Dorsey was fired midseason despite his unit recording top numbers across the league in various statistical categories. He was a hot commodity this offseason, as the Browns and the Buccaneers were interested in his services.

It is still unknown if he or Stefanski will call plays this season, but if he does not call plays expect him to be named the quarterbacks coach as well.

Need to know more about Dorsey, the new offensive coordinator in Cleveland? Here are some key things about the new offensive coordinator in Cleveland as he comes back to a place he is familiar with.

His name is on the infamous Browns' QB jersey

Browns Ken Dorsey
(Photo by Jim McIsaac/Getty Images)

Yes, Dorsey’s name is on the long list of starting quarterbacks the Browns have trotted out on the field since their return to the NFL in 1999. In 2008, Dorsey’s last season of his short NFL career, he started three games for the brown and orange.

And it did not go well.

In those games, the Browns went 0-3 as Dorsey mustered just over 120 yards per game with no touchdowns and seven interceptions. He would spend the next season in the Canadian Football League before retiring from football.

And his track record with quarterbacks and as a play-caller has been much, much more impressive.

He has coached some stellar quarterbacks... can he get Watson on the same track?

Browns Ken Dorsey
Mandatory Credit: Chuck Cook-USA TODAY Sports

Dorsey has coached two quarterbacks in his time, and they both made leaps as soon as he joined their staff.

Cam Newton won an MVP in 2015 under Dorsey, two years after the change at quarterbacks coach. Josh Allen has been a perennial Pro Bowler and All-Pro candidate since Dorsey started working with him in 2019 (his second season in the league).

Newton went on to say about Dorsey after he was hired by the Bills:

“I credit a lot of my success to Ken Dorsey… (He) is an extremely hard and efficient worker… He made my life as easy as possible. Not only is he a hard worker, but he has a vibrant killer instinct. He’s a known proven winner over the years.”

While the sample size is narrow, and there is some chance that Dorsey has just coached two great quarterbacks, there is also reason for optimism that he can get the most out of Deshaun Watson in Cleveland.

Dorsey was not the issue in Buffalo

Browns Ken Dorsey
Mandatory Credit: Mark Konezny-USA TODAY Sports

Imagine operating an offense to the tune of…

  • 2nd in points scored

  • 3rd in DVOA

  • 1st in success rate

  • 4th in QBR

  • 3rd in yards per play

  • 2nd in 3rd down conversion rate

  • 3rd in red zone efficiency

  • 2nd in rush Expected Points Added

  • 8th in Dropback Expected Points Added

  • 3rd in total Expected Points Added per play

  • Josh Allen 1st in EPA+CPOE composite

and being fired for it.

That’s just what happened to Dorsey this year because of some poor wide receiver play that resulted in unlucky turnovers, four fumbles from his starting running back, and some hero-ball from Josh Allen.

Dorsey was calling one of the premier offenses in the NFL this season, but was scapegoated because of defensive failures and overall record. After his dismissal and after Joe Brady took over the offense, the Bills finished:

  • 6th in points scored

  • 4th in red zone efficiency

  • 6th in total EPA

  • 8th in Dropback EPA

  • 7th in rushing RPA

  • Josh Allen 9th in EPA+CPOE composite

  • Josh Allen 3rd in QBR

Despite a better record after his dismissal (largely due to an uptick in defensive play from Buffalo), the Bills’ offense actually regressed after Dorsey’s dismissal.

His run game scheme is diverse and differs from Stefanski's comfort zone (this is a good thing!)

Browns Ken Dorsey
(Jasen Vinlove-USA TODAY Sports)

The absence of Nick Chubb shined a massive light on just how good this Cleveland run game is. And it’s not very good.

Stefanski, while he attempted to add a few more wrinkles to the run game, found himself falling back onto the status quo of his run game. Pin-and-pull and outside zone dominated his call sheet in 2023, and now he adds an offensive mind with a diverse mind when it comes to run scheme.

As a result, Dorsey’s run game was stellar in Buffalo. In his 11 games as the offensive coordinator this season, the Bills were second in Rush Expected Points Added. He found his groove on the ground over the back-half of the 2022 season, where the Bill ran the ball like a top-8 team in that span as well.

While the Browns hope to get Chubb back on the field, and likely need a new face behind him in 2024, Dorsey’s new perspective should help as well.

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Story originally appeared on Browns Wire