Thank you Art for firing Paul Brown, thus allowing NFL football to be brought to the Queen City
As a Browns fan, I never forgave him for the way he handled that mess.
I think that if he ever just admitted his fault in the Cleveland situation, he might have been forgiven, but instead he passed the buck to the end. In reality, he had a sweetheart lease with the city to operate Cleveland Municipal Stadium and charged the Indians a pretty penny to play there. He let the stadium go to seed while making bad deals in free agency. Then he wanted Cleveland to either renovate the old stadium and keep the Indians there or build a new one for both teams. But the Indians wanted out from under Modell's thumb and got a new stadium. Modell got upset that he was losing the Indians' rent and never made serious negotiations with the city after the Jake was built. The mayor actually had to pass a stadium proposal through a fence to a security guard because Modell wouldn't meet with them when the Baltimore money came onto the table.
I also don't get why he acted as though moving to Baltimore was the ONLY solution as opposed to, you know, selling the team.
He did a lot for pro football though.
I think what gets me the most is how he played the leaving of the Browns history in Cleveland as a magnanimous gesture. He originally announced the team as the Baltimore Browns and only gave it up to avoid lawsuits to enforce his lease in Cleveland.
Something that isn't mentioned regarding the Browns move is that it lead to a number of kids just getting into football at the time becoming Steelers fans because Cleveland had no team and the local station kept showing the Steelers instead of the much reviled Ravens and the moribund Bengals.
I think one of the best books on the Modell-Brown "relationship" and firing is....