NFL coach firings, hirings and openings: Browns to hire Kevin Stefanski

Ryan: Stefanski is a fantastic hire for the Browns (1:58)

Matt Hasselbeck, Rex Ryan, Tedy Bruschi and Sean Payton react to the news that the Browns are planning to hire Vikings offensive coordinator Kevin Stefanski as their new head coach. (1:58)

The NFL regular season is over, and head coach hiring-and-firing season is off and running for the 2019-20 cycle. The Washington Redskins (Jay Gruden) and Carolina Panthers (Ron Rivera) each fired their coach during the 2019 season, and the Cleveland Browns (Freddie Kitchens) and New York Giants (Pat Shurmur) followed after losing in Week 17. The Dallas Cowboys (Jason Garrett) were next.

When we rated the job security for every coach in early December, there were four coaches squarely on the hot seat and a few more inching closer into the danger zone. We also identified the potential candidates who could get interviews.

What's next on the NFL coaching carousel? Here's everything you need to know about the movement through hiring-and-firing season, with updates on coaches who could be next to go and the latest news on open jobs.

Read more:
Grading new NFL head coach hires
Tannenbaum: Inside a coaching hunt


Carolina Panthers (5-11)

New coach: Matt Rhule

Baylor coach Matt Rhule agreed Tuesday to a seven-year contract to become the Panthers' next coach, league sources told ESPN's Adam Schefter. The deal is worth $60 million and with incentives could be worth up to $70 million.‬

The move is a bold one by owner David Tepper, who, when previously explaining the job description, didn't rule out hiring a college coach but made it clear he understood the "difficulty" in moving from college to the NFL. Rhule previously spent only one year in the NFL, that in 2012 as an offensive line assistant for the Giants.


Cleveland Browns (6-10)

New coach: Kevin Stefanski

The Browns are planning to hire Vikings offensive coordinator Kevin Stefanski as their coach, a source confirmed to ESPN. Stefanski, 37, had just completed his first season as Vikings offensive coordinator after spending the past 14 seasons with the franchise.

He interviewed for the Browns' head-coaching vacancy in 2019 as well, but Cleveland decided to hire Freddy Kitchens before firing him after one season in which the Browns went 6-10.


Dallas Cowboys (8-8)

New coach: Mike McCarthy

That didn't take long. Jerry Jones interviewed just two coaches before deciding McCarthy was his guy. The other was Marvin Lewis, who did not win a playoff game while with Cincinnati. McCarthy comes with a Super Bowl on his resume.

After Bill Parcells' retirement, Jones interviewed 10 coaches before settling on Wade Phillips in a process that took about three weeks. This took less than 48 hours. McCarthy as a 125-77-1 record and went to the playoffs in nine of his 13 seasons with Green Bay. Jones is expecting him to take this team to the next level. -- Todd Archer


New York Giants (4-12)

New coach: Joe Judge

The Giants are finalizing a deal for Patriots wide receivers coach Joe Judge to become the team's next coach, league sources told ESPN's Adam Schefter on Tuesday.

Judge, 38, was the youngest of the seven known candidates mentioned for the Giants' vacancy and has been mentored by Alabama coach Nick Saban and Patriots coach Bill Belichick. He is considered a no-nonsense guy who isn't afraid to ruffle feathers with players if necessary.


Washington Redskins (3-13)

New coach: Ron Rivera

The Redskins officially named Rivera their new coach Wednesday.

"After several meetings with Coach Rivera, it was clear he is the right person to bring winning football back to Washington D.C.," Redskins owner Dan Snyder said in a statement. "He is widely respected around the league as a man of great integrity and has proven to be one of the finest coaches in the country."

Rivera becomes the seventh head coach hired by Snyder. Because Rivera, 57, was fired by the Panthers on Dec. 3 with a 5-7 record, and he was viewed as a strong candidate for any opening.