Art Rooney II calls Jimmy Haslam “a strong new owner”

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Jimmy Haslam is selling a minority stake in the Steelers to buy a majority stake in the Browns, and Steelers President Art Rooney II says that’s a good move for the NFL.

Rooney released a statement saying he believes that Haslam, a self-described “1,000 percent Steelers fan,” will do an excellent job with the Browns.

Jimmy Haslam and his family have been great partners in the Steelers Ownership for the past three years,” Rooney said. “I am sorry that he will be leaving our Ownership group, but I am happy the National Football League is going to have a strong new Owner. I am sure the Haslam Family will bring constructive and able ownership to the Cleveland Browns.”

If Rooney is right, that’s bad news for his team. In the 13 seasons the Browns have been owned by the Lerner family, they’ve never won the division and rarely even been competitive. Haslam’s ownership could signal a shift in Cleveland, and a shift in power in the AFC North.

9 responses to “Art Rooney II calls Jimmy Haslam “a strong new owner”

  1. Let me get this straight: the Browns who were owned by the STEELERS are now owned by a Steeler. But the Browns are really the ravens and the ravens want to be the STEELERS except they have no clue as to how to do that. And the bengals are really an offshoot of the browns, except they don’t know what they want to be???? Is the AFCN a fun division or what?????

  2. Sounds good to me. I think Browns fans who are worried about Haslam’s previous relationship with the Steelers- or see him as “tainted” because of that affiliation, need to realize that Haslam was pretty much obligated to be “1000% a Steelers fan” at the time because he worked for them! If you think that he’s going to buy the Browns to somehow sabotage the team and keep it in the AFCN basement, you’re flat out crazy.

    I see Haslam’s ownership as the absolutely best thing to happen to the Browns in decades. We are finally rid off the hands-off, do-nothing, pass-the-buck ownership of Randy Lerner- a guy who seemed to be all too interested in handing jobs to unproven, unqualified, NFL noobs as long as they made the right pitch to him. Not that Holmgren qualifies as a noob. He’s the rare exception… but Holmgren is also the guy who seems to have hired nothing but his old friends and fellow Bob LaMonte clients. Maybe Haslam will appoint a “football president” who stops at nothing to get the *right people for the job* -instead of old friends and LaMonte stablemates.

  3. Last season, every team in the AFC North brought a top ten NFL defense to the field on Sundays. That may be unprecedented.

    Pittsburgh: my Steelers REALLY got some help in KEY positions. DeCastro??? Wow. Adams/Starks. Gilbert with a full year plus OTAs and training camp. Colon healthy and moving to his natural position. Pouncey! We’ll be a rough bunch – just wonder how long it’ll take to adjust to a brand new offensive scheme after so many years under Arians. Wallace, Hampton and Harrison are concerns too.

    Baltimore: very very tough team. They play our style of football – and I respect it big time. They’re the team you want to beat the most, but they bring it. Us Steeler fans have to give these guys props for balling like they do.

    Cincinnati: strong defense, developing QB and some emerging WRs led by Green. They’ll be dangerous.

    Cleveland: up and coming. Weeden was a great pick for them. No one likes a rook that old, but he’s not a gymnast — he’s a QB, and he’ll be a good one. T-Rich is a monster. Very solid defense too – and they’re getting some people back. Gordon will provide a major boost at WR. This isn’t your father’s Cleveland Browns — it’s more like you grandfather’s.

  4. Cleveland should be excited about this, seems to me that their new owner is buying in for all the right reasons. It’s not just a business opportunity like that of the Dolphins buyout in recent past. But its going to take some years to turn the franchise around, not an easy task…. but start with your talent scouts! Weeden was bad move!

  5. Watch, the new owner will want to put his stamp on the Browns, so he will fire the Walrus as well as Shurmer and start all over again in another 5 year plan.

    The Clowns have more 5 year rebuilding plans than did the old USSR 5 year economic plans.

    It is enough to almost make me feel sorry for them. But not too much, because we like having them as a punching bag in the AFCN. The Steelers are our real competition and Cincy is making noise. But the Ravens are reigning AFCN champs until the end of this season.

    Go Ravens

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