CLEVELAND — Hey, Browns! How’s it going? Mike Polk here. Longtime fan. You might remember me. Some times when you’d really disappoint me back in the day I’d come down to FirstEnergy Stadium and yell at you for a while.
I’m not saying that it was the most mature approach, but let’s face it, you did deserve it. And yelling at you used to help me blow off some steam.
The point is, I’ve done a lot of yelling down here. And I’m tired. And I don’t want to yell anymore. And I don’t want to be mad. I’m sick of it.
That’s what made yesterday so frustrating! Ugly, soul-crushing games like that bring out all of the old Browns trauma I hoped we were done with for awhile. Especially when it just looks so familiar with all the missed opportunities, dropped passes and bad penalties at the wrong time, and that enormous, slow, seemingly immortal quarterback of there’s slowly, methodically picking apart my team with that smug look on his face like he KNOWS the Browns can’t hold a lead and it’s only a matter of time before they inevitably wear us down and…and it all just starts to feel very familiar!
But I was thinking about it, despite my current calm demeanor, I actually have far more reason to be upset with the Browns now than I did back in 2011.
After all, this is a legitimate team now that is brimming with real talent at nearly every position. The same can not be said for the 2011 Browns. Looking back, there was no real reason to have high hopes or expectations that year.
Our starting quarterback was The Quiet Cowboy Colt McCoy and he was throwing to Superstars like Mohamed Massaquoi, Jordan Norwood and Dan Gronkowski. That’s right, not Rob Gronkowski -- his brother Dan.
It won’t surprise you to learn that we lost both times we played the Steelers back in 2011. And who was their quarterback in both of those games? You guessed it. The eternal monster Big Ben.
That was a decade ago! He’s still doing it! I’m fine.
And that’s what makes this season, thus far, so uniquely frustrating. Because this isn’t 2011. We DO have the talent now. We DO have a real coach. And we weren’t 5-13 last season, we actually won a playoff game. And we won it against the very team that made us look like the 2011 Browns here yesterday!
So yes, I’m upset about yesterday’s loss. And YES, it was certainly demoralizing. But I’m remaining calm and I’m not going to start yelling yet. Because I’m not the person that I was in 2011 and the Browns aren’t the team they were ten years ago.
So let’s all just stay calm, keep it together, and Go Browns.
More from Mike Polk Jr.: