Best of the Rest:
- Al Lerner: He helped Modell arrange the move to Maryland (even though he was later celebrated for landing the Browns in Cleveland in 1999).
- John Elway: His playoff heroics, including The Drive, kept the Browns from the Super Bowl and seemed to change the fortunes of the franchise. Plus, had Baltimore originally convinced Elway to stay there after it drafted him, rather than trading him to Denver, it might have kept the Colts in Baltimore and kept the Browns from moving there.
5. Bill Belichick: His tone-deaf leadership hurt the team and weakened their case for a new stadium.
4. Al Davis and Robert Irsay: They set the precedent for moving franchises.
3. The Cleveland Indians: They overshadowed the Browns.
2. Modell's finances: The franchise was going broke.
1. Rock 'N Roll: The city of Cleveland spent millions on a Rock and Roll Hall of Fame (plus an arena for the Cavaliers and stadium for the Indians) but nothing on a new stadium for the Browns, even while Municipal Stadium crumbled.