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Winless Cleveland Browns Get ‘Hard Knocks’ Treatment

The Browns?

“Arduous Knocks,” the HBO documentary collection that takes an inside of take a look at an N.F.L. staff in coaching camp, has selected its 2018 matter: the Cleveland Browns, who’re coming off a winless season.

Since its debut in 2001, “Arduous Knocks” has inquisitive about excellent groups (the 2008 Cowboys had been coming off a 13-Three season) and dangerous groups (the Four-12 Falcons going into 2014). However by no means on a staff too dangerous to even win a recreation.

“The tale strains in Cleveland are compelling, which make the Browns a super spouse on Arduous Knocks,” mentioned Ross Ketover, an N.F.L. Movies senior government.

There’s something compelling concerning the Browns, even if it isn’t soccer excellence. The staff hasn’t made the playoffs since 2002 and hasn’t gained a playoff recreation since being reborn in 1999. It has publish season information that come with 2-14, Three-13 (two times) and Four-12 (5 instances), prior to the pièce de résistance: back-to-back 1-15 and Zero-16 seasons that set new requirements for soccer futility.

One compelling tale line when the display debuts on Aug. 7 will without a doubt be Trainer Hue Jackson, who has by hook or by crook saved his activity. “We’re fascinated about what we’re construction inside of our group and be ok with the development now we have made this low season,” Jackson mentioned confidently.

Any other is the quarterback state of affairs. The Browns have struggled to search out an good enough starter, the use of 29 quarterbacks since returning to Cleveland, together with such long-forgotten signal-callers as Spergon Wynn, Thad Lewis and Ken Dorsey and the most likely higher forgotten Johnny Manziel. Ultimate yr’s starter, rookie Deshone Kizer, publish deficient numbers, and the Browns have since bought Tyrod Taylor from the Expenses and drafted Heisman-Trophy winner Baker Mayfield out of Oklahoma with the No. 1 pick out.

“We’re having a look ahead to appearing N.F.L. enthusiasts world wide what the Haslams, John Dorsey, Hue Jackson and the training workforce are doing to rebuild the staff and reboot one of the vital iconic franchises in sports activities,” Ketover added, significantly stretching the which means of “iconic.”

The Browns agreed to take part, as produce other groups featured within the collection.

In an HBO information unencumber, House owners Dee and Jimmy Haslam mentioned they’d been contacted about being on “Arduous Knocks” a couple of instances through the years, however that the timing used to be no longer proper till this yr.

“Organizationally, we’re assured about the place we’re headed, however now we have numerous paintings to do to ensure that this franchise to earn the honour of our enthusiasts at the box,” they said.

Through the years, some groups had been hesitant about showing at the display, anxious concerning the distractions of dozens of cameras. The Patriots have by no means seemed, for instance, and it’s exhausting to believe Invoice Belichick welcoming HBO with open hands.

“Like many, I used to be reluctant about being the featured staff on ‘Arduous Knocks,’ however after we sat down and mentioned it as a company, I believe significantly better and perceive why the time is true,” mentioned basic supervisor John Dorsey.

Fears that the display may harm a staff appear to be unfounded. Of 12 groups featured, 5 did higher the following yr and 5 did worse.

Something’s needless to say: The Browns won’t do worse.

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