Sports Nerd here…
Those that know me understand my fandom for everything Cleveland sports (except the Cavs… I do not like or appreciate today’s NBA) to include the Browns, Guardians (Indians), and yes… Ohio State Football (Yeah I know they’re in Columbus). I am not blind to reality, nor am I blind to public opinion, and with that comes the elephant in the room, Deshaun Watson and his 11-game suspension that was handed down by the NFL today after a long and tedious compromise between both sides. As a result, Watson will be eligible to return to the field in week 12, which just so happens to be the week the Browns face the Texans, how convenient. I’ve made no secret my feelings on Watson, I have been against the trade from the beginning. I don’t want him as the quarterback for Cleveland, I have been critical of ownership (Jimmy Haslam) the front office (Andrew Berry) and of course the coaching staff (Kevin Stefanski) from the start. After today’s events, even with closure of the whole issue, my thoughts and feelings have not changed.
Watson got LESS than what he deserved. I wanted no less than a one-year suspension for Watson and a hefty fine. To be honest, I want him to be suspended for a year, a hefty fine, and the requirement that he apply for reinstatement to the NFL after the suspension with no guarantee that he would ever step on an NFL field for the rest of his life. Let me be clear… I hope Watson never takes the field for The Browns, and although I know this won’t be the case, it does not change the fact that he is a cancer on the league and does not deserve to be a QB in the NFL. It is distasteful to me that the franchise I have rooted for most of my life is willing to compromise their morality in search of a championship and that there are also fans of The Browns looking the other way, willing to put blinders on and root for this guy, to support him, to believe he did nothing wrong, when in fact the evidence is clearly right in front of their face.
I am loyal to the team, to the Browns, I do not root for individual players but for the franchise to do well. It leaves a distasteful flavor in my mouth to know that despite all that has happened, all that has come to light during this whole ordeal, I will still put on my Jim Brown Jersey and my Miles Garrett jersey and root for this team. With that being said, I will not be afraid to criticize this franchise or call them out for their distasteful rhetoric. The press conference today by the owner was nothing less than an exercise in justifying bringing in a serial compulsive sexual predator in order to win the Lombardi. Watson doesn’t deserve to be on the same field as that trophy, or the champions that have held that trophy in triumph. Lombardi, Landry, Shula, Noll, Walsh, Parcells, Johnson, Cowher, and yes, Belichick. From Starr to Staubach, Dawson to Griese, Bradshaw to Montana, Simms to Aikman, and of course, Brady, Watson needs to be in the depths of NFL oblivion, never to be seen on an NFL field again.
I’ll end with this… I wish Jacoby Brissett the best, that for the first 2/3 of the season that he is successful and leads The Browns to a winning record. When Watson does return, I will be sad, but I will still root for the team, because that’s what I have done for over 50 years and will continue to do for the remainder of my days. My loyalty will never waiver, despite the fact that I dislike one of the players, because it is what my father did, and it is what my grandfather did. Go Browns!!!
Join me and my cohosts @jongolson, @scubatexan, and Eliot “Big E” Lomba each and every Sunday night at 7:30 PM Eastern time for The Sports Nerds! 90 minutes of sports talk, trash talk, and laughs as we discuss the week in sports.