Off-Base Percentage is a weekly post about the lighter side of sports, mainly baseball. Whether it occurs on the field, in the locker room, or in the media, if it is a little ‘off-base’ then it is fair game. If you are looking for analysis of a player, team, or sport it won’t be found in this post. This is for the sports fan that wants to take a step back and look at sports from a ‘different’ angle. Enjoy.
It has been a couple weeks since I last posted an OBP article, but this week I had some interesting inspiration. The Cleveland Browns and Jimmy Haslam sold the naming rights to Cleveland Browns Stadium and it will now be known as FirstEnergy Stadium. I know that the rights were sold to pump more money into the franchise and I am sure FirstEnergy is a suitable sponsor. Maybe Haslam is hoping to infuse a current into the stadium that makes the crowd electric when their teams takes the field with a new coaching staff–and at this rate maybe even a new look. However, I thought I would take a stab at some competing name brands that were up for the naming rights bidding war. FirstEnergy may have been the best choice but here are the rest of the top five, according to me:
2. Tempurpedic Mattress Stadium - In blunt terms the Browns, in past seasons, have been easy to fall asleep on. And so are Tempurpedic mattresses. On one side many top-tier teams have fallen asleep on the Browns in the past few seasons. Until this season Cleveland had beaten the reigning Super Bowl champion the next year for since the Steelers beat the Cardinals. They even beat the Patriots and Saints in the same season because the teams ‘fell asleep’ on the Browns. On the other side, fans have put up with a bunch of stagnant offenses and lackluster defenses in the past couple seasons. There were glimpses of progress this season, but the Browns have become a team that can win 6-3 or lost 10-9. I personally have fallen asleep more than a couple times watching the Browns.
3. Taco Bell Field – Like the Cleveland Browns, Taco Bell always sounds like a good idea at the beginning but in the end we always end up regretting the decisions we made. Cleveland is a storied franchise and so is Taco Bell. However, when you wake up the next morning after eating too many tacos or drinking too many beers during the Browns game you end up wondering, “What was I thinking?” I am hoping like the rest of us that ‘Chud’ will be here for years to come, but if history repeats itself once again we will be uttering those same four words in two years.
4. Shape-Ups Stadium - Like the old homage about a fat girl and moped goes, “they are fun to ride, but you don’t want your friends to know.” Along those lines the Browns get a lot of support but no one wants to be seen cheering for them in public. And to add insult to injury (no pun intended), with the exception of most of this season the Browns have been bitten by the injury bug a lot and without depth that does not help bring success. Shape-Ups also have been brought under fire causing injury to those who support the product. There have even been lawsuits filed against them. Hopefully no fans sue Cleveland for the same thing.
5. Oreck Field – Oreck is a well-known vacuum company that has been featured on more info-mercials than OxyClean or the ShamWow. However, like the Browns, they are not the best at sucking. The browns finished with double-digit losses once again and for another season they weren’t even the worst team, the Jaguars and other teams were better at sucking up the NFL. The Oreck vacuum may be marketed well, but the Dyson ball is better at sucking up dirt and dust.
I know it is fun to poke fun at the Cleveland Browns. But I feel like it is a coping mechanism that helps me and probably other fans deal with the displeasure the team has caused for many years. I pray that the team can turn it around after the front office has been clearing house and maybe we can at least cheer on a team that constantly fights for a .500 season. I don’t think that is asking much.
Who should have bought the Browns Stadium rights? Will the Browns turn the corner this season? Let me know in the comment section or on Twitter @Believelander.
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