Jason La Canfora, the captain of the Cleveland Browns fear mongering ship, is at it again.
The last time our dear friend from CBS Sports dumped on the Browns came in September, when he planted the seed that Cleveland made the awful decision to pass up on QB Carson Wentz. Now, with the Browns having a pseudo bye week after having played on Thursday Night Football, he’s drumming up the rumor that Jimmy Haslam will get trigger happy in Berea once more. Among the things included in the article are:
- Hue Jackson’s decision to bench QB Cody Kessler in the second half of this past Thursday’s game raised eyebrows.
- Ray Horton was a “very unpopular pick in various quadrants of the organization,” but was brought in because of Jackson’s persistence. The feeling is that Horton’s future with the club is uncertain.
- La Canfora says that [Jimmy] Haslam and his wife Dee “have become increasingly hands on, with many departments essentially reporting directly to his family.”
- A team source is feeding La Canfora information about the trepidation in Berea:
Morale is low, even by Browns standards, and with 10-or-so departments reporting directly to ownership and without the presence of a strong team president providing leadership, the hands-on approach of the Haslams is causing concern throughout the organization.
"You basically have a husband and wife in charge of various areas they don't really understand -- football, coaching, scouting, analytics, ticketing, marketing," a team source said. "And that's the way they want it."
I could see something happening to Horton after the season, but not because of Haslam overstepping his boundary. Also, when a team is 0-10, there is bound to be frustration, and most days are going to feel like complete shit in Berea. Who wants to be seen “having a good time” in Berea when the team hasn’t even gotten their first win? I think La Canfora is reaching again. On Friday, Jackson actually talked about his relationship with the Haslams and the team’s plan moving forward:
On how Dee and Jimmy Haslam have responded and their feedback to him:
“Jimmy Haslam and Dee Haslam have been outstanding. Obviously, they don’t like to lose, either, but I think they understand the plan and what we are trying to accomplish. I have total faith and confidence in them and the vision that we have created. No one wants to be sitting here in the position that we are in, but they have been outstanding to me. They have been outstanding in their support of me. I feel very comfortable with where we are – not where we are as far as our record – I feel very comfortable as far as where we are in my relationship with them and how they feel about where we are headed.”
On the Haslams understanding the team’s plan and what are the Browns trying to accomplish:
“That is something that you would have to talk to Sashi about as we move forward. At some point, I am sure that will be kind of laid out. What you guys have seen is the development of a lot of young players on our football team for numerous reasons, not just because that is what we wanted to do but also because of injuries and because they were the best people to put in those positions. We all recognize when you are playing a lot of young players that these seasons, records, whatever it is you want to say can go a lot of different ways. For whatever reason, it hasn’t gone the right way for us. We have not had very many breaks as we have been through the season. That is a huge part of it, but at the same time, I don’t think anybody wants to be in the situation we are in today.”