Each week the Browns fan base is left wondering how coach Jackson with his record of 3-36-1 continues to keep his job. But let us step back and look at the big picture and what may be at the root of this question.
Joe Thomas has said on multiple occasions that the Browns ownership decided to take the route of the 76’ers and tank for draft picks. This would then fit with hiring Sashi Brown, long-time football lawyer to step in as acting GM.
But another point that may be overlooked is the fact that Hue Jackson himself would also have to be a part of this plan. After all, it would be his record in the history books. So here you have, at the time, the hottest head coach on the market, passing on the New York Giants job to take on the task of turning around the Browns franchise.
Hue Jackson accepted the job from Browns, and for Dee Haslam, it was a big win for ownership that had a mighty struggle until that day.
The plan was to set up as a new kind of front office. One that would keep Hue Jackson from answering to anyone other than the owners. Sashi would be given a GM (almost) title and each would report directly to the Haslams. It wasn’t long before NBC Sports ran a story explaining that some time down the road both the Haslams and Hue Jackson would together find a GM to run the team’s day-to-day roster. Meanwhile Hue would keep control of coaching and the game day 53.
Now things were set in place as Sashi Brown took off and did everything he was hired to do. But it didn’t take long before everyone involved realized what a monumental task this was truly going to be. Dee Haslam even put out a statement admitting the turnaround was too hard on the fan base.
From Jeff Risdon Browns wire: Dee Haslam “The way we did it, I don’t know that I would repeat,” Haslam told Crain’s reporter Kevin Kleps. “In other words, I don’t know that a fan has the desire or the stomach to go through what we’ve been through the last few years. And I will tell you this, we don’t have it. It was just way too hard, way too emotional.
The point was reached after all losses started to pile up and turmoil inside the building went to a fever pitch, that Browns ownership released Sashi Brown and laid the blame solely on him.
At the end of the 2017 season, the Browns and Hue Jackson would start with a clean slate coming into 2018. With new GM John Dorsey at the helm, the main goal would be to add talent while maximizing the draft to give Hue Jackson a team he could win with. By the start of the season, everyone was in agreement that John Dorsey had executed his this task to perfection.
But it didn’t take long before another problem reared its ugly head. While the Browns ownership was willing to give Hue Jackson a do-over everyone else was not. As noted in the beginning of this article, the record for the plan to tank would stick with Hue Jackson forever. When the Haslams decided on this plan, they also chose not to be honest. With that, the fan base that’s always been so loyal, isn’t willing to give Hue Jackson that do-over.
When you make a decision based in fear sometimes it’s hard to properly account for unforeseen consequences. What you thought would be ok is not. The ugly part of the plan to tank is coming back. That’s not going to be easy.
This comes after a year when Pilot Flying J was raided by the FBI for a scam ran on minority trucking companies that defrauded them of millions. The ex-president was caught on tape making racial slurs, not only about the trucking companies, but the Cleveland Browns as well It must be a trying time.
From the PFJ disaster to the record of the football team, the Browns ownership team of Dee and Jimmy Haslam have now found themselves in a place not too many other owners will ever face.
While Hue Jackson did accept this challenge in the beginning. no one used risk management to determine how high the price could be. Common sense would tell you the chance that Hue Jackson would ever get another head coaching job is slim. This plan set in place by the Haslams has all but ended his career beyond the Cleveland Browns.
The Browns ownership will now have to answer as to why they did this to a once highly sought after coach. How could they ask him to risk his career for just a few years coaching? How could you not only allow your company to defraud its customers but also do the same to your fan base?
This is not a great position to be in for Dee Haslam who at one time believed signing Hue Jackson was the greatest day in their Browns history.
What options does ownership really have at this point in the failed plan to tank?
- Release Hue Jackson and take full blame. If they did choose this option what would the price be? What will it look like when Hue Jackson takes to the media pleading his case that Dee and Jimmy Haslam ended his career?
- Retain Hue Jackson, keep shifting blame to anyone else, and hope at some point he can really turn this team around. If they choose this option how long until the damage simply can’t be fixed?
Ownership has found itself in what they call a catch-22 with no real way to win. But sometimes to win a war you have to suffer defeat. It’s time for both Dee and Jimmy Haslam to step up to the podium and come clean with the Cleveland Browns fan base. Unlike the lawsuit filed against the trucking company, it will not cost $90 million to fix this disaster.
Dee and Jimmy Haslam will need to make this decision sooner than later. While Hue Jackson was on board with this plan it’s safe to assume that John Dorsey will have no part of it. Yes, it will be painful dealing with the fallout of releasing Hue Jackson but it’s truly now the right move. We can no longer embrace the tank—it’s time to start winning.
Written By: @Chadp71
Edited By: @Robzie_