The Cleveland Browns have become comically bad.
What was once a proud franchise synonymous with winning has turned into the butt of NFL jokes.
After enduring an embarrassing 1-15 season last year, things could potentially get worse in Cleveland.
The Browns’ roster has essentially been gutted, and they could be staring at a winless season, which would tie them with the 2008 Detroit Lions for abject futility.
Hue Jackson might want to get the speedo ready.
When the 2016 ended, Jackson said there was no way the Cleveland Browns would go 1-15 again. If they did, he said people would find him swimming in Lake Erie.
…NFL Nation reporters for each team picked their team’s game-by-game results.
The reporters picking games against the Browns made Cleveland 0-16.
Winless. The Browns will not even beat the Jets, Bears or Jaguars.
Every reporter for the other teams picked their team to beat the Browns.
Does this matter? Technically, no. But a year ago NFL Nation writers picked their teams to win one game over the Browns — and that was over San Diego on Christmas Eve.
The Browns started the season by losing 14 in a row, then they beat San Diego on Christmas Eve. They finished 1-15; NFL Nation not only got the record right, it got the one win right.
The picks for teams playing the Browns reflects how a team is viewed around the league. It’s easy to make fun of a struggling team, and the Browns have redefined the word struggle. But they now are to the point that it’s nearly automatic: When your team plays the Browns, your team should expect to win. Your team will win.
“Playing the Browns has a way of cleansing the Steelers’ soul,” Steelers reporter Jeremy Fowler offers.
Jamison Hensley in Baltimore points out a couple fun facts. First, the Ravens have won eight of nine at home over the Browns, and the Browns have used six different quarterbacks in those games. The only guys to start twice: Seneca Wallace and Brandon Weeden. Hensley adds that half of Baltimore’s four road wins the last two seasons have come in Cleveland.
The three games that seem winnable at this point are the Jets (Oct. 8 at home), Jaguars (Nov. 19 at home) and Bears (Dec. 24 in Chicago).
In New York, Rich Cimini offers that Mitchell Trubisky could be starting for the Browns or the Jets in the game, and that New York will somehow “find a way to squeeze out a win.”
In Jacksonville, Michael DiRocco brings things into perspective with this gem: “The Browns are the only team on the schedule that the Jaguars have a winning streak against coming into the season. The Jaguars have won two in a row (2013 and 2014), and they should be able to extend it to three.”
And in Chicago, Jeff Dickerson asks: “There is no way [John] Fox’s team comes up short at home in back-to-back years to Jacksonville and Cleveland. Right?”
He sums things up simply by saying: “You can’t lose to the Browns.”
The Browns have become a graveyard for quarterbacks. Since 1999, they’ve had 26 different starting signal-callers, and they’ve endured 15 consecutive seasons in which at least two different quarterbacks have started.
The 27th man up is rookie DeShone Kizer, who left Notre Dame after a thoroughly disappointing Redshirt Sophomore season.
The Browns also released Cornerback Joe Haden, their best player on defense, and didn’t make an effort to re-sign Terrelle Pryor, who had a surprisingly productive season as Wide Receiver.
While other teams are trying to get better (except for the New York Jets), the Browns seem intent on getting worse. To their credit, they’ve amassed a war chest of draft picks.
Browns’ current 2018 picks: Rd 1 Rd 1 (HOU) Rd 2 Rd 2 (HOU) Rd 2 (PHI) Rd 3 Rd 4 Rd 4 (CAR) Rd 5 Rd 5 (KC) Rd 6 Rd 6 (PIT) Rd 7
This gives the Browns two drafts worth of picks in 2018, but at some point they’re going to have to convert these picks into wins.
However, the fans seem to be taking the misery in stride. If the team “reaches” 0-16, they will have a parade.
The official paperwork was filed this morning with the @CityofCleveland!! The @Browns Perfect Season Parade (0-16) moves on!! #GPODAWUND