Wednesday, December 30, 2015 Pluto: Browns fans endure yet another "rumor season" There are lots of rumors surfacing about who will get fired after Sunday's season finale...which has become an end-of-year ritual in Cleveland by WKSU's AMANDA RABINOWITZ
The Cleveland Browns finish the season this weekend against Pittsburgh, and it’s likely yet another shake-up of the front office is on the horizon. WKSU’s Amanda Rabinowitz talked to commentator Terry Pluto about what to expect in the next week.
LISTEN: Terry Pluto on Jimmy Haslam's tough choices aheadOther options: MP3 Download(4:12)
Terry Pluto calls this time of year the "rumor season." Rumors are swirling about who will be fired after Sunday's season finale against Pittsburgh -- The coach? The general manager? Both? He says fans can expect at least one person to go.
"They are 3-12. You go back to last season, they have now lost 17 of their last 20 games. In fact, right now, they now have the largest margin of defeat out of 32 teams, they are 31st. They are losing by more than 10 points a game."
Haslam's tough choices Owner Jimmy Haslam said during training camp this past July that he wouldn't "blow things up" despite what happens in 2015. This came after he fired Mike Holmgren, Tom Heckert and Pat Shurmur when he first took over in 2012, and then fired Coach Rob Chudzinski, CEO Joe Banner and GM Mike Lombardi a year after that. Still, Pluto says Haslam likely didn't envision this season would be this bad and change will be inevitable.
"I've gotten emails from people that Jimmy Haslam just doesn't care. Haslam does care because he's a fairly recognizable figure between Flying J [truck stop business] and here. And Flying J went through all these legal problems with price fixing and his company paid $92 million in fines and they paid another $60 or $70 million in settling debts with these companies. That doesn't look good for you. And then on top it, you own the team that frankly is considered the most dysfunctional in the NFL. So, you want to get something right at this point in your life. Is he capable of getting it right,? I don't know.
Why haven't fans had enough yet? "I got an email from a fan and he was just talking about why he follows the Browns. It was one of those things that was really a heart-grabber. He said, 'My son was a law student at Arizona State. It was 2010 and he was watching the game. It's Colt McCoy's first NFL start in Pittsburgh and he's sending me texts. 'How does Colt look?' He said it's the last text he got from his son. He says when he walked out of that library, two guys came up to him, robbed him of his computer and cell phone and killed him in cold blood. He says, 'Now when I go and watch the Browns, I think of my kid.'"
Pluto says he posted that email to his Facebook page and asked fans if they had any similar experiences or stories to share. And he says the responses poured in. "In the hospital room and dad's dying and we're talking about the Browns....And...Mom always loved Frank Ryan and so she would make this big dinner at our house when the Browns were playing even though they stink. So, in terms for their hard core, which is a very big hard core, the Browns are intertwined into so much of the family matters."
So, those loyal fans who endure the "rumor season" can gear up for more big changes next week."General Manager Ray Farmer, or Coach Mike Pettine or both will be fired," Pluto says.
LISTEN: Terry Pluto on his chat with Indians Manager Terry Francona