The Browns have been bought by Jimmy Haslam. With the ushering in of a new owner (who has a minority stake in the Steelers to boot!) the team will be entering a new ere…much like the Jaguars.
The NFL is a constantly changing place. While teams do not tend to fold they did in the early years of the league, teams do occasionally move, ownership changes, and (sometimes) fortunes change as well.
Whether it’s the greatness that Peyton Manning brought to the Colts or the golden years for the Vikings under Fran Tarkenton, sometimes fortunes change. Now the Colts are Manning-less and pinning their hopes to the young arm of Andrew Luck and the Vikings are a mediocre player in a powerful division.
The city of Cleveland has had a pretty rough go of it. Originally a very successful team, the Cleveland Browns made “The Move” to Baltimore in 1995. Art Modell moved the team and became the Baltimore Ravens that everyone now knows. The team has had some major success, including a Super Bowl victory since taking the team to Baltimore.
While the move was good for Baltimore, it was bad for Cleveland. “The Browns” were refounded in 1999 as a continuation of the old franchise (the Ravens were considered a quasi-new franchise) but did not have the same ownership, roster, or clout that the Ravens took with them.
Since then, the Browns have had only two winning seasons (9 in 2002 and 10 in 2007) and has been the laughing stock of the AFC North.
So, how do they relate to the Jaguars?
While the Jaguars entered the league in 1995 and had some early success, they have really stunk it up since 2007. While the road to 5-11 for the Jags has not been as tumultuous as the Browns, they both are looking to climb up out of the rubble of their great franchise histories. Part of that move upward takes the form of ownership change. Shahid Khan has come in looking to spice things up in Jacksonville and turn the culture into one of winning. Haslam has the same goal in Cleveland. The teams will be committed to the draft and will look to building storied franchises rather than one year wonders. Both teams are looking to come out of the cellar.
The Jags and the Browns are not the flashiest or most well followed teams in the league. Neither team has put out a very marketable product since 2007. But both teams will have a chip on their shoulders coming into future seasons. Seeing the two teams rise from their humble rebirths will be intriguing to watch.
As they both compete to be the best in their respective divisions, they can use each other as measuring sticks to see which owner will come out ahead.
- Luke N.Sims
You can also find me on Twitter @LukeNSims