Wednesday, May 25, 2022

Hue Jackson says he wasn’t paid to lose, suggests Browns situation had similarities to that of Brian Flores

NFL: Cincinnati Bengals at Los Angeles Chargers
Kirby Lee / USA TODAY Sports

Amid Brian Flores’ lawsuit against the NFL alleging racism in its hiring practices, the former Dolphins head coach claimed that Miami owner Stephen Ross offered to pay him $100,000 per loss during the 2019 season. One of the more viral reactions to that allegation made by Flores came from Hue Jackson. The former Browns coach suggested that he too was paid by Cleveland ownership to tank during his time with the team, which was later vehemently denied by owner Jimmy Haslam. 

However, in a recent interview with CNN’s Anderson Cooper, Jackson noted that he was not paid to lose games when he was head coach of the Browns. 

“No, I was never offered money like Brian (Flores) had mentioned,” Jackson said. “I think this is a totally different situation but has some similarities.”

While there was no outright payout incentive for Jackson, he told Cooper there was a “plan” that benefited certain people when players didn’t perform well. 

“When you talk about incentivizing a four-year plan that led to the team not being able to play as well, that people benefited off of that — that’s different. But at the same time, it has some of the same similarities to it,” said Jackson.

Jackson also told CNN that he had evidence to back up his claim that ownership intended to lose games and even said he brought that issue to Haslam in 2016. 

“I was assured by Jimmy (Haslam) that things would change, and they would get things straight,” Jackson said. “I told Jimmy that what he was doing was very destructive, to not do this because it’s going to hurt my career and every other coach that worked with me and every player on the team. And I told him that it would hurt every Black coach that would follow me. And I have the documents to prove this.”

When asked why he hasn’t revealed those documents yet, Jackson said they “will come to light at the right time.” 

Jackson, who is now the head coach at Grambling State University, went 3-36-1 during his coaching tenure with the Browns, which included an 0-16 campaign during the 2017 season.

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