At Modell Family's Request, Browns Cancel Plans To Honor Art Modell

Former Cleveland Browns and Baltimore Ravens owner Art Modell died this week.

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Browns Cancel Plans To Honor Art Modell

Most of the teams in the NFL will be going to some lengths to honor the late Art Modell, but the Cleveland Browns will not be one of them. Mary Kay Cabot of The Plain Dealer reports that the Browns will do nothing to recognize Modell's passing during pre-game activities on Sunday.

Browns President Mike Holmgren reached out to Modell's son David and said 'we want to do the right thing by the Modell family,'' according to Ravens spokesman Kevin Byrne.

"David told Mike that he really appreciated the call and the offer, but that he knew it would not be totally accepted by the Cleveland fans,'' Byrne said.

"David suggested that the Browns not do a tribute.''

It makes sense, given Modell's history with the team. He owned the franchise from 1961 to 1995, and was responsible for moving the team to Baltimore, giving birth to the Ravens franchise. The Browns stayed defunct for three years before returning under a different owner.

Had there been a moment of silence in Cleveland, it's unlikely there would have been anything approaching silence in the stadium. All other teams have thus far made it clear that they plan to do something to honor Modell who, despite the ire held by Cleveland fans, had a large effect on the way the NFL looks today. The league had sent a memo to all teams on Friday asking that they commemorate Modell's death in some way, and it's unlikely they take issue with the Browns passing on the opportunity.

Talk about Modell with Browns fans at Dawgs by Nature and with Ravens fans at Baltimore Beatdown.


Art Modell, Former Browns And Ravens Owner, Dead At 87

Art Modell, the controversial former owner of the Cleveland Browns and Baltimore Ravens, has died at the age of 87, according to WBFF-TV in Baltimore. Reports late Wednesday suggested that Modell had been hospitalized and was gravely ill. WBFF-TV reports that Modell died early Thursday due to heart failure. The Ravens quickly confirmed the news via their official website.

Modell bought the Browns in 1961 and is considered one of the founding fathers of the NFL. In 1996, he made himself a villain in Cleveland by moving the team to Baltimore, which had lost the Colts to Indianapolis some 13 years prior. The NFL forced Modell to leave the Browns moniker and branding in Cleveland, and the league awarded the city an expansion team a few years later. But the Ravens went on to win Super Bowl XXXV in 2000 -- the only Super Bowl victory in Modell's tenure -- while the Browns have made the playoffs just once since expansion in 1999.

Modell sold his majority interest in the team in 2004.

For more on the Ravens, please visit Baltimore Beatdown.

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