If you’ve seen any of Cleveland’s preseason games this year, you may have noticed that their helmets looks like uncarved pumpkins, all orange with no logos (like usual) and no stripes (not like usual).
Coach Hue Jackson, who has earned only one win in two seasons, has decided that players must earn those three stripes, two brown and one white.
A reporter asked Jackson on Friday whether he’d prefer to just play regular-season games without the stripes, which isn’t a bad idea given that the all-orange helmets actually don’t look horrible.
“I wish I could,” Jackson said regarding the stripe-free approach, with a laugh. “No, I do not think that is going to happen. They are definitely going to earn them. The guys who are the 53 that stay here, they will definitely be the guys that have the opportunity to put those stripes on their helmets.”
The 53 will be set next Saturday, meaning the stripes will be earned by the guys who aren’t cut before the roster shrinks from 90. And then, of course, the Browns will start making waiver claims, adding players cut by other teams and necessarily taking jobs away from players to whom the franchise will have just given their stripes.