I love baseball and the Cleveland Indians, I really do. But with their lackluster offseason, it’s been somewhat hard for me to get excited about the Tribe this season. We should never take Francisco Lindor, Jose Ramirez, and the fantastic starting rotation for granted, among other notable players, and I know we should enjoy them while they’re on our favorite MLB team, but I just have a different feeling about this Indians season than in years past. Maybe it’s because of the injuries. Maybe it’s because of ownership cutting payroll during the contention window. Maybe it’s because of the fact that they aren’t even in first place in the worst division in baseball. I know, it’s only April, but the Indians’ struggles have made it a little easier for me to look ahead to the Cleveland Browns. It helps that there is so much to look forward to there, too.
For the first time that I can truly remember, I’m looking ahead to the Browns season not only because football is awesome, but due to the Browns actually having real, high expectations as well. In years past, Browns fans have seemingly been way too optimistic about their team potentially being successful, which turned into a dud within the first month (or less) of the season. But 2019 is different. That’s what makes it so awesome.
Baker Mayfield. Nick Chubb. Odell Beckham Jr. Jarvis Landry. David Njoku. Antonio Callaway. Rashard Higgins. Myles Garrett. Denzel Ward. Larry Ogunjobi. Do I need to go on? This list can continue for quite a while and I haven’t even mentioned any of the 2019 draft picks yet. There’s just so much talent to look forward to.
When I first read Beckham’s comments to GQ at the Met Gala Monday night, I didn’t know what to think. At first, I thought that the Browns have to prove it on the field before being so confident and cocky off of it. But, with players such as Mayfield and Beckham, that’s not going to happen. It isn’t a bad thing, it just is what it is.
His outfit was something Cleveland fans will love, but it seems as though many fans will love his comments even more.
Dude dressed like Rick Vaughn on picture day and I don’t care if it’s unintentional. https://t.co/cNDihx1dJy
— Scott @ WFNY (@WFNYScott) May 7, 2019
“I would say [Baker’s] next, but I feel like he’s now,” Beckham told GQ’s Cam Wolf. “He’s Brett Favre—he’s going to be a Hall of Famer.” He’s excited about the rest of the first-round talent filling up the roster, too, so much so that he thinks this is a championship-level team. Dynasty-level, even. “I plan on being there for the next five years and trying to bring as many championships there as possible,” he says, “turning [the Browns] into the new Patriots.”
Baker as a Hall of Fame quarterback? Yes, please. Championship-level and even Dynasty-level team? Yes, please. His comment about the Patriots was even a good one, too. Beckham’s comment about the “new Patriots” wasn’t hating on New England either. He realizes how much success New England has had and wants to replicate that in Cleveland. OBJ didn’t say a single negative word but rather hyped up his new team and teammates.
You can say that the Browns have to prove it on the field, but you have to love the swagger that they have, too. If they can pair that swagger with success on the field, well, watch out, NFL.
For the Browns and the Dawg Pound alike, all of us are hoping that the Browns, while talking the talk during the offseason, can also walk the walk during the season and prove that their cockiness is well deserved. If they win and are successful, no one will care what they say in pressers or interviews. Those same comments will make plenty of headlines if Cleveland struggles on the field, though. Then again, we all know that last part isn’t going to happen, right? Right?
First-year head coach Freddie Kitchens has his hands full, both on and off the field, but it seems as though he does (and will) have it under control. Even if he needs some help, Kitchens was smart enough to bring in assistants and coordinators that have prior head-coaching experience. That alone shows just how smart of a football guy Kitchens truly is. You can never have too many minds on the coaching staff. They may argue at times given how much experience each has, but it’s likely that the experience and quality of minds that the Browns coaches have will lead this team to bigger and better things and get the best out of each and every player.
He is already a fan favorite and if he leads this team to plenty of success, the Dawg Pound will truly love him like they have loved no Browns coach since 1999.
In years past, I’ve somewhat been looking forward to fantasy football season much more than the Browns themselves. Add in my love for Ohio State and the Buckeyes and fantasy football have given me plenty to look forward to and pay attention to every fall. This year is different, and that’s what makes it awesome. I’ll still love my Buckeyes and fantasy football, but the Browns will seemingly be must-watch television, too. How much am I looking forward to watching the brown and orange this fall? I found myself in a YouTube wormhole over the weekend. One of the handful of Browns-related videos I watched was Baker Mayfield’s phone call from the Browns when they decided to take the quarterback with the first-overall pick in 2018. It was a moment that changed this franchise for the foreseeable future.
It’s clear that the Browns and the Dawg Pound have high expectations, now will they be able to meet said expectations on the football field, which is really all that matters in the end? Well, I can’t wait to find out. I don’t want to wish away summer, the Indians season, or even life itself, but is it Browns season yet?