Why Browns coach Hue Jackson says he will jump into Lake Erie

Shutdown Corner

Hue Jackson is a man of his word.

Last year, after the Cleveland Browns finished 1-15 in Jackson’s first season as head coach, Jackson said he would go swimming in Lake Erie if the team finished with a similar record in 2017.

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Well, the Browns need a road win over the Pittsburgh Steelers on Sunday to avoid having a worse record. That’s right: 0-16.

Cleveland Browns head coach Hue Jackson answers questions during a news conference after the Baltimore Ravens defeated his team in an NFL football game, Sunday, Dec. 17, 2017, in Cleveland. (AP Photo/David Richard)
Cleveland Browns head coach Hue Jackson answers questions during a news conference after the Baltimore Ravens defeated his team in an NFL football game, Sunday, Dec. 17, 2017, in Cleveland. (AP Photo/David Richard)

As a result, Jackson, unprompted, told reporters Wednesday that he is prepared for a frigid swim. From ESPN.com:

Cleveland Browns coach Hue Jackson strode to the podium for his Wednesday news conference, looked at the assembled media and said, “Who’s going to jump in the lake with me?”

Jackson was referring to his vow from a year ago that if the Browns went 1-15 again, people would find him “swimming in [Lake Erie].” His proactive approach Wednesday defused what could have been a difficult topic.

“I made that statement,” Jackson said. “I got to back it up.”

Jackson said he wants to make an event out of it — perhaps when the weather is warmer — to benefit the Hue Jackson Foundation, which aims to combat human trafficking in Cleveland.

“Hopefully I can get a lot of people to come out. It’d be something that we’re going to make special,” Jackson said. “I don’t like it. Don’t like to do it for the reason why I’m having to do it, but I have to make do on my word. I just think that’s what you do.”

Jackson has a miserable 1-30 record in his two seasons in Cleveland. Despite that, Jackson expects to be back in 2018 and said he has been given no indication he’ll be let go after the Pittsburgh game.

If the Browns don’t win, they will join the 2008 Detroit Lions as the only teams in NFL history to finish 0-16.

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Sam Cooper is a writer for the Yahoo Sports blogs. Have a tip? Email him or follow him on Twitter!

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