Hue Jackson: Browns would be winning by now if we’d done it my way in Year One

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Days after he was fired after two and a half seasons as the Browns’ head coach, Hue Jackson said today that the team could already be successful if only they’d done things his way from the beginning, when he was first hired in 2016.

“Had we been doing in year one what I was able to get us to do in year three, there’s no question we would already be a winning football team. You can’t go 1-15 or 0-16 and have people like you unless you come out and explain to everyone that you’re going to lose. And you can’t say that publicly,” Jackson told

What would Jackson have done differently? He says he wanted to draft Carson Wentz in 2016, or Deshaun Watson or Patrick Mahomes in 2017.

“We passed on three franchise QBs the first two years in Wentz, Watson and Mahomes,” Jackson said. “We played with a QB room with zero wins in the league. We played with street free agents and practice squad players in WRs. Yet our offense was the same or better than what we were doing this year. There is no way that should happen.”

Of course, it’s easy for Jackson to say that now, with the 20/20 hindsight of knowing that Wentz, Watson and Mahomes have all developed into franchise quarterbacks. But Jackson says he’s believed from the beginning that the Browns shouldn’t have waited until Year Three to find that franchise quarterback in Baker Mayfield.

“You can’t pass on quarterbacks,” Jackson said. “You never pass on a potential franchise quarterback because you don’t know who’s going to be there in the future. I think Baker Mayfield is going to be a sensational player if they surround him with the right people, but they’ve got to give him help and run a scheme suited to his skill set.”

If Mayfield ever does become a sensational player, it will be under some other head coach.

109 responses to “Hue Jackson: Browns would be winning by now if we’d done it my way in Year One

  1. Coach Hindsight. I like how of course he would have only drafted the best QBs to come out the last two years and not some scrubs.

  2. Yeah, right, Baby Huey. There is enough of doing it your way to send you packing. Now disappear!

  3. I wanted to draft every player from a few years ago who turned out to be good.

    I wanted to draft Tom Brady in the 5th round.
    I wanted to draft Russel Wilson in the 2nd round.
    I wanted to draft Mahomes #9 (ahead of the Chiefs).

    I also wanted to draft Aaron Donald with the 12th pick.
    And Antonio Brown in the 4th round.

    I’ll tell you in a few years who I would have drafted in 2018 (Mayfield, darnold, Rosen, Allen)

  4. But they had all that cap space and draft picks. I keep hearing from people like Gruden that cap space and draft picks are how you build a winning team…

  5. Hue seems like a nice guy and a decent offensive mind, but he’s soft and should not be a HC again any time soon.

  6. Kiser was supposedly a steal at the time that they drafted him.

    I’m paraphrasing, but I think Hue said something along the lines of ‘If I’m worth my salt as a coach I will make this kid a great QB.’

    Hue… Please just shut up and leave.

  7. Hue Jackson is a terrible HC, but if nothing else, he can always be counted on being a self-absorbed egomaniac, a liar and a blowhard.

    Jon Gruden shares the exact same traits.

  8. What would have Jackson done with any of those three QB’s? He would have anointed Tyrod Taylor or Josh McKown as the starter giving them all of the first team reps during OTA’s, camp, preseason and practice. Then, he would pull that starter half way through the 2nd quarter of the first game to throw an underprepared rookie to the wolves and then pull the rookie QB once he throws a pick and continue to play and bench in a systematic effort to destroy that rookie QB.

    Bottom line, no competent HC goes 1-31 with any NFL roster and only a gutless dumb dumb places the blame on the front office for that.

  9. Good luck ever getting another coaching gig backing that bus up like your doing. Maybe you can get a gig as an assistant bus driver?? Carson Wentz would have opted to play badminton than play for you Hue “I’m in charge” Jackson!

  10. Personally thought Baker was doing pretty darn good for a rookie comming into a team that was 1 and 31 the previous 2 years.
    But happy to hear what Hue thought about everything. If its true he did want to draft those QB’s he’s probably right.

  11. This is why NBA style rebuilds don’t work in the NFL. The GM and coaches doing it can’t last long enough to see it through. Players won’t respect a coach that loses so much over 2 years.

  12. Hey never thought I’d defend this guy he is horrible, but they’re front office did pass on all those kids and this year they could of had Barkley and Chubb just saying.

  13. The unfortunate truth is that even if “my way” is a billion dollar idea it’s worthless unless you can convince others that “my way” is the way to go, and that convincing is more than half the battle for CEOs, coaches, etc.

  14. Back in 2016 you said Wentz wasn’t the right fit. Make up your mind Hue. He sounds like a constant excuse maker.

  15. Worst coach in NFL History….

    I don’t care about some owner in the 50’s who tried to coach his team.

  16. “You can’t go 1-15 or 0-16 and have people like you unless you come out and explain to everyone that you’re going to lose.” — Well, he is unequivocally the only coach in all of sports history to ever say that.

  17. Come on…lets be real. This guys record would’ve been exactly the same, regardless of the draft and team. He is a terrible Head Coach, he is a coordinator. The amazing thing to me is that the Browns brought in another questionable character with terrible leadership skills in Todd Haley – so you had 2 total ME guys running a young franchise which makes no sense,

  18. I think if he didn’t ask a 21 year old rookie QB to throw 31 times a game he would have won some games last year.

    I don’t know how Hue expected to keep his jobs with a 4-36 record, unless the Browns came out of the gates blazing this year.

  19. It’s the Browns. I remember watching the game with the fumble by Byner against the Broncos.

    Something as simple as holding onto the ball became difficult in that situation.

    Strange. You see RB’s do that all the time yet, he fumbled. What could have been for Cleveland. They were a damn good team.

    That being said, Hue, I’m the best coach in NFL history. If I only had a chance…

  20. Hugh Jackson was the “feel good” decision made by the Haslams –
    He has been a total failure as a coach and his record stands for itself :
    3-36-1 as Cleveland HC & 11-44-1 overall.
    Hugh’s a great guy but bad HC, and if you look at his coordinator jobs – he’s never stayed
    very long at any one place since coming into the NFL in 2001 – is that a flaw?

  21. To Hue Jackson, So you kept a job not doing what you were paid to do and are now complaining about taking the responsibility of that? Come on bro….

  22. Well since caoching football didn’t work out for you Hue it seems with your amazing ability to see into the future you should become a fortune teller. Maybe Miss Cleo is hiring…

  23. folks need to understand Most NFL coaches have to take the players the GM give them & figure out how to win I would say right now MAYBE 3 HC’s can pick there own players without approval from the GM

  24. Hue is such a pathetic liar. Now he says he wanted Wentz but at the time his buddy Silver said “Goff is Hue’s guy, he likes Wentz but not at #2”. Hue conveniently leaves out that he was the one who said “Trust me” on Kessler, “If I am worth my salt as a coach, Deshone Kizer will be a franchise QB because he has all the tools and studies hard” and he wanted to trade a second and third round pick for AJ McCarron.

  25. can’t quit decide if hue reminds me more of rich kotite or ray handley.either way they’ll go down as 3 of the worst EVER! and that’s a long,long time!

  26. this guy doesn’t belong in the game of football. That’s been proven beyond a shadow of a doubt. If any team ever brings him to their franchise in any capacity, it will be a sign of incompetence of the highest order.

  27. Riddle me this Hue…how come it took an injury to Tyrod Taylor and the GM trading away Carlos Hyde before you got the two better players at those positions in the field? It was ridiculous how much better the offense looked as soon as Mayfield came in for Taylor. What were you watching in practice???

    And as egregious as that was I think the Chubb flub was even worse. At least you can argue you didn’t want to rush a young QB into action but EVERYONE knew Chubb should at the very least be splitting carries with Hyde and you couldn’t find but 2 or 3 carries a game for him? Pathetic. Even my 8 year old son asked why Chubb wasn’t getting more carries after watching his run against the Raiders.

  28. He’s right tho about passing on three franchise Qb’s. Has always been a problem in Cleveland, long before Hue.

  29. “…they’ve got to give [Baker Mayfield] help and run a scheme suited to his skill set.”

    No mention of the person most responsible for making sure that occurs on Sundays – and failed miserably at it.

    NEWSFLASH: He’s staring right through the mirror at you, Hue.

  30. It`s easy to trash Hue but he was given ZERO chance because he was paired with Sashi Brown and “money ball”. Do you really believe the offensive minded coach with no job security WANTED to keep passing on QB`s to collect draft picks? Sure he talked up Kizer AFTER he was drafted he had too. All the Browns fans can blame him to make them feel better about their future and Dorsey is 10x the GM Brown was but the problem is Haslam so good luck.

  31. 10 second evaluation of Hue as a head coach: you are what your record says you are.

    As for Hue the self-proclaimed brilliant offensive coordinator, he is taking a page from another self-proclaimed OC; Lane Kiffin. The Lane Kiffin who famously claimed that Bama would have beaten Clemson 2 years ago if he had not been dismissed as OC (a job he had simply stopped doing when he was interviewing for HC jobs before the playoffs).

    I’d love to buy either one for what they’re worth and sell either one for what they THINK they’re worth.

  32. He’s not wrong, necessarily. While, from outward appearances, I don’t think Jackson is cut out to be a head coach; it’s also pretty obvious that ownership is clueless. Not to mention there were always reports floating around that Jackson was trying to push for certain players at draft time, but management wasn’t listening. It’s funny how, right after he purchased the team, Haslem was talking about how the Browns were going to ‘do it the way the Steelers have always done it’ and build a winner. He’s as clueless as it gets, in my opinion, and his decisions haven’t shown otherwise.

  33. I can’t blame Hue Jackson for mistakes that were made by others. Sashi Brown was running the show. Just because he’s gone, doesn’t mean he’s completely forgotten.

  34. The BROWNS front office has not Been suitable for any draft prospect,Vet.F/A,Rookie,or Coaching staff!! You cant run this team like it’s your 3rd shift crew@ a local Pilot Truck Stop!!!

  35. Hue doesn’t draft players. Dorsey and other GM’s have. They are the Bengals of the 90’s. Thank you Mike Brown for hiring Duke Tobin. I understand Hue’s issue sad to say.

  36. While I don’t think Hue Jackson is a great coach, I don’t necessarily disagree with him. Remember, the Browns wanted to try the whole “moneyball” thing in football and didn’t understand how to build a team with talented players. So he was stuck with all that garbage. This is the first year they really tried to build a team and I thought they weren’t all that bad given the circumstances.

    It’s really Haslam making Hue take the blame for sucking as an owner.

  37. If it’s true he wanted to take Wentz then he’s right. Jackson may not have been a good coach but his OC did knife him in the back and Baker’s “I won’t miss him” comments were a cheap shot. I can understand him wanting to fire a few shots back.

  38. This sounds a lot like Mike “Let’s start with the facts. I’m a highly successful NFL coach” McCarthy, who would have a similar record without Rodgers.

  39. Except this actually some evidence to Hugh Jackson statements as I remember that one game where they were winning and then suddenly they pulled starters, similar to how the Bucs did to get Jameis.

  40. Every fan makes the same mistake, over and over. TH and HJ know ALOT about professional football. a good GM is necessary to get talent. however, if your team has a meddling owner that involves themselves in big football decisions, you’re screwed. not necessarily sticking up for HJ but i believe the real problem is JH.

  41. He’s right in that Sashi Brown implemented the analytics approach to player acquisition (Billy Bean Ball). They traded back and passed on QBs that EVERYONE in football thought they should take …they needed a franchise QB. Tough to do but Hue should have quit. Instead he stayed and toed the company line but he knew it was a losing proposition. Hue might be bad but he is a better coach than his record. He never had a chance until…this year….and with a decent kicker they’d be 4-4 likely.

  42. I knew he wasn’t head coach material on Hard Knocks when Corey Coleman questioned him about being demoted to 2nd string and he redirected him to go see OC Haley. I just can not even imagine Mike Tomlin, Belichick, or Sean Payton not looking him dead in the eye and saying “you are not performing well enough to keep that position”. Case closed.

  43. Hue is right.. the browns are dumb for passing on watson and Wentz! And then to end up with Baker mayfield.. sorry but the browns will never be good.

  44. Ask my Miami Dolphins if there is a price that is too much to pay for a franchise QB. Better yet ask the Colts. 20 years. We won on purpose however lost in the end.

  45. Hue the first mistake was taking the browns job……going on you knew what the browns were about. Could have sat as an offensive coordinator for another year and had a better pick of teams

  46. Nothing he’s currently saying hasn’t been repeated by former Browns players and coaches before including earlier this year from Joe Thomas. I find it funny that people are so bent on hating Hue Jackson for being the latest fall guy in Jimmy Haslams terrible 6 years of owning the team that we forget that a homeless man told Haslam to draft Johnny Manziel and force him on a coaching staff that didn’t want or like him.

    This is literally Haslams M.O. Just sad that coach #4 in six years is taking the fall for it.

  47. Sashi Brown’s approach to dumping high priced free agents and stockpiling draft picks was the right move for the franchise. However, the picks he did made left much to be desired (Corey Coleman, Julius Peppers, etc.) Myles Garrett was the obvious choice, so it’s hard to give him credit for that one. And he saved the Browns from trading for McCarron, which just may be his finest moment as a Browns exec.

    Hue Jackson certainly would have had more success if the Browns were in “win-now” mode, and I didn’t feel it was fair to blame him completely for 1-31 in his first two years. Year 3 was his chance to show that he could run a stable organization as a head coach, play with talent, and get everyone on the same page. Instead, he let his worst traits dominate and the team regressed significantly. His pettiness would have defined the organization over the next nine weeks, so even though it won’t really help the Browns win this season, letting him go now was clearly the right decision.

  48. Guess when Jackson said “we” it didn’t mean him.

    Earlier this week Browns chief strategy officer Paul DePodesta explained that the Browns didn’t believe Wentz would ever develop into a top-20 quarterback league-wide.

    Those comments caused quite the stir in Philadelphia and on Tuesday, Browns head coach Hue Jackson elaborated why Cleveland opted to accept a package of picks over the course of three drafts in exchange for the No. 2 choice from the Eagles.

    “We didn’t draft Carson Wentz because we didn’t think it was the right fit for our team at this time,” Jackson said on PFT Live. “There’s nothing more to it. Obviously, that will make for great debate in the media, and that’s fine. Our singular focus right now is just preparing to face the Eagles.”

  49. I warned Browns fans 3 years ago, 2 years ago, last year and again this year. Nothing has changed with Jackson. This guy has zero substance. It’s not just the QB, it’s the ownership, coaching staff and the 52 other players on the team.
    Good luck.

  50. you people are unreal, give him a break, the only reason for the lack of success has nothing to do with the coaches. It’s simple really. God hates the Browns, in a league of parity. It’s almost impossible for a team to be that bad year after year after year, unless god hates you

  51. I find it odd that all the “experts” (and I am listening to some right now) have decided Mayfield’s career is somehow in jeopardy. He will be fine.

  52. Most coaches are put in a tough situation when their job success depends to a great deal on the decisions made by their GMs. Being on the same page as your GM has great advantages. Being your own GM has even more. See the Patriots and Bill Belichick. If he fails, it’s all on him and he knows it and owns it.

  53. He does kinda have a point about that 2016 draft. Look at it, I think they went 2/16 for drafting starters. Yikes! That’s a problem with the GM, scouting department, and coaches. The 2017 draft at least resulted in some starters, but even that one has some indefensible decisions, like drafting a subpar kicker who you could pick up off the undrafted FA list.

  54. Hue is certainly entertaining. Maybe that is why they kept him for so long. You need a good jokester around the office to keep things light.

  55. “His way” like when he called a “fake punt” in the 1st quarter of a game from his own 35 on 4th and long, where the PUNTER AND LONG SNAPPER LINED UP AS TACKLES TO BLOCK for an RB taking an OBVIOUS direct snap, then stood there looking absolutely dumbfounded when it got blown up and didn’t fool anybody? Oh, but he’s such a “mastermind” huh?

    Or what about when he called a flea flicker from HIS OWN END ZONE with one of the most atrocious deep ball throwers in the game, a washed up Bob the 3rd (who he said was gonna revolutionize his offense for years to come LOL) then stood there looking dumbfounded that it ended in an interception.

    Or when they were playing the Pats in Brady’s 1st game back from suspension, and instead of saying “excited for the challenge, see how we stack up, blah blah” basically just said “well this sucks, we’re gonna get our butts kicked”. Yeah, good leadership and motivation there coach.

    THIS was Hue’s way. The guy is a joke. One of the worst Head Coaches we’ll ever see in our lives.

  56. It seems to me the owner has a lot to do with this. In his interview it appears everyone goes through him, well that obviously didn’t work.
    Too bad that the Browns have that owner.

  57. Mike Silver has been saying for the past 2 years that his BFF Hue Jackson did not want Wentz and when Goff was gone they made the right move to trade out because Wentz was seen as a lower tier QB by Hue and Sashi.

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