The Browns have given their fans nothing to celebrate since rejoining the league in 1999. So Browns fans are celebrating whatever they can, including the second 0-16 season in NFL history.
They went forward with a parade on Saturday, despite the best efforts of defensive end Emmanuel Ogbah to persuade them not to celebrate the team’s misery.
“That parade is a joke don’t call yourself a true Browns fan if you go to that thing!” Ogbah said on Twitter. “Going 0-16 was embarrassing enough as a player. That is like adding fuel to the fire and it is completely wrong!”
Right or wrong, fans are within their rights to make their displeasure known. Far more effective than showing up for a parade would be not showing up for games, not watching or listening to games on TV or radio, not following the team via newspapers or the Internet, and otherwise shutting down the Factory of Sadness until the team gives them a reason to turn the lights back on.
It’s actually amazing that Browns fans mustered the will to proceed with a parade. Gaslighted by 18 years of football that has produced a single one-and-done playoff season (in 2002) and a 4-44 record over the last three years, 1-31 over the last two, and perfection (sort of) in 2017, it would be very easy for them to simply glaze over and wait for prosperity that may never come — especially without making major changes to the way business is currently being done.
The common thread for the last five years has been ownership, with the Haslams succeeding team re-founder Al Lerner and his son, Randy. Coaches, General Managers, executive Vice Presidents, and CEOs can be fired, but no one can fire ownership. The only way to simulate that would be to choke off the supply of money and/or to loudly agitate for what seems to be most needed right now by the Browns: A sale of the franchise.