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Jim Brown is not going to attend the Cleveland Browns Ring of Fame ceremony. That’s what he keeps saying, anyway.
In a letter Brown sent to both Mike Holmgren of the Browns and the Cleveland Plain Dealer, Brown spoke of the meeting the two men had when Holmgren first took over the Browns, and how the Browns’ legend feels like the agreement he had with the team had been violated.
When you called me for a meeting in your office, there was no conversation about that agreement, no conversation about my duties, no conversation about what I felt, no conversation about my relationship with the players, no conversation about my relationship with the coaches, no conversation about my relationship with the head coach, and no conversation about my community work. Ultimately there was no conversation about anything that I felt was related to my job.
Your ultimatum to me was that you would offer me the opportunity of being that of the greeter, that of a mascot, that of a person that would represent special events by his physical presence, and for those things, I would receive a salary of $100,000. All of those things that you offered me would be controlled by you.
After that 10 minute meeting, I went to my office with a feeling that I was just fired by the Cleveland Browns, because in my mind, there would be no way on this earth that you would expect me to go against everything that I’ve ever stood for in my whole life.
Brown then re-iterated the fact that he had no intention of coming to the Ring of Honor ceremony on September 19th.
But in my conclusion, I’ve never danced in the end zone, I always gave the ball to the referee, so you should know I don’t dance. Also Mike, I don’t hang out on the Westside of town. I’m an Eastside guy. I play my golf at Highland Golf Course. I don’t go to the Hall of Fame ceremonies, except on occasions, like when Gene Hickerson was inducted, and I felt very proud to be with Bobby Mitchell and Leroy Kelly in showing our respect for his great contribution, and for helping us become great players. I don’t have any trophies in my home on display. I don’t claim to be the best at anything, and I emphatically do not need validation from any man, so I will not participate in your Ring of Honor.
It truly is sad that the Browns seemingly cannot have a relationship with one of their all-time greats, even if Jim Brown is difficult to work with.
Jim Brown has yet to commit to attending the Browns Ring of Fame ceremony in September. Last week, Brown mentioned that while he has tried to move some things around, his schedule will not allow him to make th trip to Cleveland. Many think it has something to do with Mike Holmgren removing Brown from the team’s payroll when he was hired to run the Browns this off-season. Whatever it is, the relationship between the Browns and their greatest player is cool at best.
Speaking on a Syracuse radio station earlier today, Brown confirmed he felt disrespected by the Browns.
I’m a very sensitive person. I do like to be respected. I’m very loyal. I like it to be a two-way street. I’ve been very quiet about the situation in Cleveland. Sometimes when you comment on things, all you do is create problems. The last thing I want to do is create problems for anyone or disrupt the team or ownership or the plans of other people.
Brown went on to say that he has a ‘dignity and character’ that he needs to protect, that he has no need to comment on ‘where I go, why I go, why I don’t go’.
Earlier today, Mike Holmgren addressed the situation surrounding Brown’s appearance, saying he ‘trusts’ that Brown will attend the ceremony. he also said that while Brown’s responsibilities have changed, he still wants Brown to be a part of the Browns family.
Let’s face it. Jim Brown loves attention, he craves it. He uses it to gain publicity for issues he is championing. Jim Brown will be at the Ring of Fame ceremony because it is in Jim Brown’s best interest to be there – but only after touring various media outlets first.
The Cleveland Browns officially announced their Ring of Honer in Cleveland Browns stadium this afternoon,with names that makes many wonder just why it took so long to have some kind of memorial in place. Overall, 16 Browns greats will be displayed on the facade of the upper deck at the stadium, all 16 representing the members of the Browns that are enshrined at the Pro Football Hall of Fame in Canton.
Included in today's announcement came word that the Browns will also partner with the Hall of Fame to create a season-long exhibit called Heritage Hall. Included in the display will be displays dedicated to the 16 Ring of Honor inductees, including their busts, memorabilia and photography from the team's and players' history.
Browns President Mike Holmgren recognizes the importance of honoring the team's storied past.
Our heritage and alumni are vital parts of our organization. The Cleveland Browns franchise has such a tremendous history and tradition that we felt it was extremely important to visibly honor the greats who have laid the groundwork for everyone associated with the Cleveland Browns. The creation of the Ring of Honor and the reinstitution of the Legends Program are just the start of how we plan to pay tribute to our history. When our fans now enter Cleveland Browns Stadium they will constantly be reminded of the great players and most memorable moments in our club’s past. The contributions of these 16 men will always be remembered.
The 2010 Ring of Honr Inductees are:
RB JIM BROWN (1957-1965) - Rushed for 12,312 yards on 2,359 career carries in 118 games... Enshrined in the Hall of Fame in 1971.
COACH PAUL BROWN (AAFC: 1946-49, NFL: 1950-62) - Browns' first ever head coach and general manager... Enshrined in the Hall of Fame in 1967.
OL JOE DeLAMIELLEURE (1980-84) - Helped pave the way for three 1,000-yard rushing performers... Enshrined in the Hall of Fame in 2003.
DL LEN FORD (1950-57) - Selected to four consecutive Pro Bowls from 1952-55... Enshrined in the Hall of Fame in 1976.
OL FRANK GATSKI (AAFC: 1946-49, NFL 1950-56) - Helped pave the way to four consecutive AAFC championships from 1946-49 and NFL titles in 1950, 1954 and 1955.. Enshrined in the Hall of Fame in 1985.
QB OTTO GRAHAM (AAFC: 1946-49, NFL: 1950-55) - Led the Browns to the championship game in each of his 10 seasons, winning four AAFC titles and three NFL championships... Uniform number 14 retired by the Browns... Enshrined in the Hall of Fame in 1965.
OL/K LOU GROZA (AAFC: 1946-49, NFL: 1950-59, 1961-67 - Browns career record holder with 234 field goals made, 641 extra points made and 1,349 career points... Enshrined in the Hall of Fame in 1974.
OL GENE HICKERSON (1958-60, 1962-73) - Served as a lead blocker for three Hall of Fame running backs in Jim Brown, Bobby Mitchell, and Leroy Kelly... Enshrined in the Hall of Fame in 2007.
RB LEROY KELLY (1964-73) - Gained 7,274 rushing yards, 12,329 combined yards and 90 touchdowns... Enshrined in the Hall of Fame in 1994.
WR DANTE LAVELLI (AAFC: 1946-49, NFL: 1950-56) - Helped the Browns to four consecutive AAFC championships, from 1946-49 and to NFL titles in 1950, 1954 and 1955... Enshrined in the Hall of Fame in 1975.
OL MIKE McCORMACK (1954-62) - Selected to five Pro Bowls (1957-58, 1961-63) with the Browns... Enshrined in the Hall of Fame in 1984.
WR/HB BOBBY MITCHELL (1958-61) - Registered 2,297 rushing yards on 423 attempts with 38 rushing scores while playing in the same backfield as fellow Hall of Famer Jim Brown... Enshrined in the Hall of Fame in 1983.
FB MARION MOTLEY (AAFC: 1946-49, NFL: 1950-53) - Helped the Browns to four consecutive AAFC championships from 1946-49 and to an NFL title in 1950.... Enshrined in the Hall of Fame in 1968.
TE OZZIE NEWSOME (1978-90) - Recorded 662 career receptions for 7,980 yards and 47 touchdowns... Nicknamed "The Wizard of Oz"... Enshrined in the Hall of Fame in 1999.
WR PAUL WARFIELD (1964-69, 1976-77) - Recorded 271 receptions for 5,210 yards and 52 touchdowns as a Brown... Enshrined in the Hall of Fame in 1983.
OL BILL WILLIS (AAFC: 1946-49, NFL: 1950-53) - Helped the Browns to four consecutive AAFC championships from 1946-49 and to an NFL title in 1950... Enshrined in the Hall of Fame in 1977.
The Class will be enshrined at a ceremony during Halftime on September 19th against the Kansas City Chiefs