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Freddie Kitchens will retain play-calling duties in Week 17

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Mike Florio and Chris Simms examine the report that Freddie Kitchens is safe in Cleveland and have determined they still think he's in danger of being fired.

The Browns are 6-9, seven games behind the Ravens in the AFC North. They rank 18th in total offense, including 23rd in passing offense, and 22nd in scoring.

Yet, head coach Freddie Kitchens will call plays this week against the Bengals with offensive coordinator Todd Monken remaining upstairs in the coaching booth.

“We’re going to always evaluate and do the best thing and the thing that gives us the best chance to win,’’ Kitchens said, via Mary Kay Cabot of cleveland.com. “Todd’s done a good job all year of keeping us on course. Todd would do an excellent job calling the plays. I just feel more comfortable doing it right now. Nothing against Todd.”

Monken called the plays for most of the season for the Buccaneers a year ago. The Bucs set teams records for total yards, passing yards and passing touchdowns, leading the league in passing yards.

Monken answered “no” when asked if his calling the plays this week was discussed internally.

Monken interviewed for head coaching jobs last offseason, but between Monken not calling the plays and the Browns’ offensive struggles, it seems less likely teams give him that chance this offseason.