Sunday, May 20, 2018
Cleveland Browns Hard Knocks Baker Mayfield
Ken Blaze-USA TODAY Sports

Hard Knocks: Cleveland Browns Dumpster Fire Will Be Televised

You know how at Christmas time some cable companies will broadcast a Yule Log burning? This is going to be a lot more like that, but with more screaming and less egg nog. Yes, the announcement came down just moments ago that none other than the Dawg Pound itself, the Browns of Cleveland, will be featured on this year’s edition of HBO’s Hard Knocks.

I could not be more thrilled.

First off, here’s the good news for Cleveland fans. Coaches get fired after getting the microscopte from Hard Knocks a lot. It’s easier to play off your team’s struggles if NFL Films’ cameras aren’t there to catch every single moment of your inept coaching. Hue Jackson won’t be able to hide.

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Neither will defensive coordinator Gregg Williams. Williams, and his Grecian Formula goatee, were prominently featured in the Los Angeles Rams’ season that cleared the building of shitty coaches. He should already be ordering some moving boxes and trying to get out of his lease.

On the actual entertainment side, Baker Mayfield should be an interesting character and, maybe, Hard Knocks will actually show him more instead of a handful of undrafted free agents at the ass end of the roster who will never make the team. I understand there’s some nice, human drama there, but I’m not tuning into Hard Knocks to watch a guy from Ferris State drop punts for six episodes. In the Rams’ season third string center Eric Kush’s stringer tanks got more screen time than Aaron Donald and Todd Gurley.

They did a better job last year with the Tampa Bay Buccaneers. The biggest problem there was the Bucs didn’t use their featured season as the solid excuse to fire Dirk Koetter. They broke the rules by keeping their crappy coach. You’d hope the Browns wouldn’t make the same mistake, but they’re the Browns. Anything is possible.

Here’s the X-Factor that could really make this season something special; Browns owner Jimmy Haslam. Haslam is currently in a lot of trouble. His company, Pilot Flying J, is currently on trial for committing massive fraud. While the man himself isn’t currently charged in the crime, that could (and should, really) change any day. We could literally watch the owner of an NFL team get cuffed and stuffed on television.

Haslam can’t be happy about this, in spite of the statement the team released.

“We have been asked multiple times about being featured on Hard Knocks, and we really felt like it was our turn this year and the timing was right,” Haslam said. “We want to be great partners in this league, and we also recognize Hard Knocks gives fans a special opportunity to learn more about our team and players. Organizationally, we are confident about where we are headed, but we have a lot of work to do in order for this franchise to earn the respect of our fans on the field. We understand winning is ultimately most important to our fans.”

Much like Haslam’s courtroom testimony, I don’t believe any of it. Nobody ever wants to be on Hard Knocks. Coaches hate the distraction and the outside scrutiny. Remember Jeff Fisher’s “7-and-9 Bullshit?” Of course you do.

Regardless, like every year I’ll be watching and, with a potential Haslam arrest, maybe we’ll get a nice crossover with COPS.

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About Adam Greene

Adam Greene is a sportswriter, photographer and humorist. You can email him (and you should) at

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