The Cleveland Browns are at a pivotal point; either they emerge next season as a legitimate threat in their division, or they continue to be the league's perennial punchline. And it largely depends on the decisions made this offseason.
As the country's most (rightfully) impatient fan base looks on, Jimmy Haslem, Joe Banner and company must figure out a way to right the ship. To do this effectively, they'll have to evaluate and make five crucial decisions about the future of this young team. While there are reasons to be hopeful, there's still tremendous potential for missteps that could cost the franchise another few years of painful rebuilding.
We're approaching the new year, a time of renewed hope and blissful delusion that we actually will stick to our resolutions. But two months from now, as wine bottles are opened on Tuesday nights and gym memberships fade into obscurity, Browns management will be charged with sticking to their decisions and finally setting things right.
It's a matter of shrewd decision-making and the tenacity to stick to the plan. As a franchise searches for its identity, here are the top five decisions its leaders must address.