Dear Johnny Football, See Ya

Here is the press release every Cleveland Browns fan wishes owner Jimmy Haslam would issue.

Browns to Dump Manziel

The Cleveland Browns have released quarterback Johnny Manziel. As of today Mr. Manziel is a free agent and he can sign with any NFL team.

At a time like this it is customary to thank Mr. Manziel for his contributions to our organization, wish him well, and acknowledge that though perhaps things did not work out as planned with the Browns, we hope he can find a suitable situation that will benefit him and his new team.

But we're hard pressed to think of any contributions and we don't really care what happens to him. He is an immature, irresponsible, and unethical little man and we have no more time for him.

We drafted him with the expectation that he would be a professional. We made him independently wealthy. The city was prepared to proclaim "Witness" and welcome him as its second king. But he spit in our collective eye.

We cannot explain his behavior but predict he will do great harm to himself or, worse, an innocent bystander someday, probably sooner than later. We want no part of him anymore. The Browns team and its entire organization, our fans, and the City of Cleveland have nothing to say except "Good bye."

If he had shown promise expected of a first draft choice, or even signs of mediocrity, we might take a different position. It has been awhile since the Browns had a quarterback who rose to the heights of the middle of the pack. We don't say this proudly. But we are in a business that gives second chances (and third, fourth, and more - look at Ndamukkong Suh) when there is the remotest possibility of any on-field contribution. We can no longer delude ourselves in this case.

So Johnny, whatever your problems are, feel free to take them anywhere you want to go, as long as it is nowhere near the nation's North Coast. I'd recommend the Oakland Raiders but, unfortunately, Al Davis is no longer with us.

For one thing we might be grateful. The selection of the almost equally disappointing Tim Couch as the first pick in the 1999 draft does not look so bad now.

Unfortunately, we are unlikely to ever read such a press release.

Greg Squires (squires@gwu.edu) lives in Washington DC and has been a Cleveland sports fan for almost 60 years.