Are We Too Hard On Browns Fans?

J HartmanCorrespondent IAugust 10, 2009

Living near Cleveland (the most inept professional sports city in the world)  is not easy when you grew up in Western Pa. near the city of champions.  I am often truly stunned by the irrational behavior of Browns fans, they honestly seem like a well oiled idiot factory at times.  So, I did a little research and stumbled on something that could explain some of their irrational behavior.   

I wondered if the fans of the other teams who struggled like the Browns, since the merger, have an irrational obsession with their nemesis so I looked at a couple of message boards for the Lions, Saints, Cardinals, Falcons, Jets, and Bengals.  These six teams and the Browns represent the seven worst overall records (other than expansion teams) since the 1970 merger.  Other than the Bengals, none of them show this irrational hostility toward their nemesis. The one real difference is that the Browns were once great, the best of the best, and maybe today's Browns fans simply can't accept the reality of how long ago it was and how bad the franchise has been for nearly forty years. The other possibility is that those other teams haven't seen their former door mat (The Steelers) rise to become the greatest franchise in all of sports........that has to hurt and could possibly explain the irrational behavior of the Browns and Bengals!

Don't get me wrong, if you go to any of those other boards you will see a healthy hate for their arch rivals but nothing like the obsession Browns fans have for the Steelers, once the other half of the best rivalry in the NFL the Browns aren't a rival for anyone any more.  But again, none of those fan bases have had to watch their hated rival dominate not only their team but the entire league like Browns fans have. In the divisions where those other basement dwellers live, the other three teams take turns winning the division, but then fall short in the playoffs (except the Patriots of late), in the Browns division it's always the Steelers..... best franchise in all of sports, more Super Bowl wins than anyone, winningest team in the NFL since the merger, one butt whipping after another, etc., etc., etc.......I guess maybe it's simply too much to handle.

Nowhere else in sports has a team and it's fans had a similar situation to deal with! least that I can think of.

So next time a Browns fan starts their irrational BS, just smile like you would if you were at an old folks home and the guy who just soiled himself is ranting about the smell around the joint!