It brings me much sadness to write, but this is my final post for intentional hounding.com. In founding the site nearly eight years ago (New Year’s Eve of 2011), a lot has happened to me personally – as well as for the Cleveland Browns.
I went from engaged, to married (to the best wife a guy could ask for – Linsey), to having two beautiful children (Caleb and Isabelle) and an awesome dog (Briar).
I interviewed for a position with the Cleveland Browns in 2013 (seeing then coach Rob Chudzinski eating in the cafeteria during my tour). P.S. I did not get the job.
I moved from Chicago to Chagrin Falls, being a season ticket holder in 2014. I saw several victories at home under the helm of Brian Hoyer. I brought on a contributor Will Gibson (@wjcgibson) to help post articles. He has moved on to much greener pastures, but I appreciate his willingness to post on this site.
I attended training camp twice, both during the Hue Jackson era – I was sure the team would turn it around that year. Being there with my family brought me much joy.
I have watched countless games in my basement, sometimes alone, sometimes with family and friends – I miss the Chicago Browns bars, but nothing beats the comfort of your own home.
In that timeframe:
The Browns had Pat Shurmur, Rob Chudzinski, Mike Pettine, Hue Jackson, and Freddy Kitchens as head coach.
The Browns had Tom Heckert, Joe Banner, Ray Farmer, Sashi Brown, and John Dorsey as general manager (or GM equivalent).
The Browns had Colt McCoy, Seneca Wallace, Brandon Weeden, Brian Hoyer, Jason Campbell, Johnny Manziel, Thad Lewis, Brock Osweiler, Austin Davis, Charlie Whitehurst, Josh McCown, Robert Griffin III, Tyrod Taylor, and Baker Mayfield quarterback the team at some point. I’m sure I have missed others, but you get the point.
The Browns did not have a playoff appearance or a winning record to finish a campaign.
Yet I’m still here. We’re still here as Browns fans. My father raised me as a fan going back to the late 1980s and I am very appreciative of that. I actually met Lou Groza while in preschool in 1989 (some would call it the good ol’ days). Unfortunately, my father passed the following year – ironically it feels like the Browns have been down ever since. One playoff win and zero AFC title games to speak of since 1990. Having a child (son) in 2016 brought a ton of positive emotions to myself, as I would be able to pass down my love of Cleveland sports and the Browns to the next generation. As many have recalled, the 2016 and 2017 seasons for the team brought a single victory and much heartache for the franchise. However, I still remain hopeful for the future and think a change or two could help guide team to a Super Bowl victory. As many know, I am not a tremendously emotional person, but I cried when my children were born, I cried when the Cavs won the NBA Finals, and I will likely cry if either of the other two Cleveland teams win a title.
Thank you anyone who is reading this article, has ever read or responded to an article on this website, or has read or responded to a tweet from @IntentionHound – which I created to post articles and chat with Browns’ fans. I hope I brought insight, humor, and points of debate or interest when I posted my blogs. I created this site as a way to communicate (or truthfully vent) about the team, so my fiancé at the time did not have to hear me complain all the time. I will still watch the Browns and interact on social media (@esaunier), but this chapter of my fandom is now closing. Please feel free to communicate if you so desire.
Shamless plug alert: You can catch me on the I Still Believe in Cleveland podcasts (you can subscribe on YouTube) with two friends from high school Ryan Sponseller (@spony) and Drew Swallen (@dswales11). All the credit should go to Ryan, the creator of the podcast.
It truly is hard to quit this team and I know it has been rough, but I cannot wait for the team to finally get it right. The second half of the 2018 season was so exciting, but that will pale in comparison to what would happen if the team was simply great.
Thank you again for reading! Goodbye and Go Browns!
Signing off one final time,