The Steelers and Browns have been playing one another since dinosaurs walked the earth. The two teams are natural enemies like cats and dogs (although Steelers and Browns is more analogous to sharks and seals or lions and gazelles).
I have followed this storied rivalry since the late 1960′s, I have seen both teams win their fair share of these contests. Over that time, I have developed a hatred for certain Cleveland Browns players. Here is my list of my top 10 most hated Cleveland Browns.
#1 – Joe “Turkey” Jones
“Turkey” Jones will always be public enemy #1 in Pittsburgh. For those of you who are too young to remember Turkey Jones and the play that made him infamous, let me take you back down memory lane.
It was October 10, 1976, and the Steelers were playing their arch-rival, the Cleveland Browns. The Browns had signed Turkey Jones to their roster specifically to try to injure Steelers’ quarterback Terry Bradshaw. Prior to that game, Jones had been a prisoner in a maximum security penitentiary. The Governor of Ohio gave him a pardon so he could join the Browns to play against the Steelers. The Governor made a secret agreement with Jones; hurt Bradshaw and win your freedom.
The Steelers were beating the Browns 79-3, when the Browns sent in Turkey Jones to do his dirty work. Jones knew that he could never get past the Steelers’ vaunted offensive line, so he waited until after the refs had blown a play dead and Terry Bradshaw was walking back to the huddle. Jones had to make sure that Bradshaw and the other Steelers’ backs were turned, since no Brown would ever challenge a Steeler face-to-face. When he knew that Bradshaw wasn’t looking, Jones sprinted towards Bradshaw, picked him up in the air, turned him upside down, and slammed him head first into the ground. A loud applause rose among the unwashed Cleveland fans. Simultaneously, Steelers fans and the rest of the civilized world looked on in utter shock and horror.
As Bradshaw hit the ground head first, most fans thought that his spine would snap. Bradshaw’s body spasmed violently as he writhed in pain. But before anyone could react, Turkey Jones proceeded to stomp repeatedly on the helpless Bradshaw’s throwing hand in an attempt to injure him further. Finally, he gave Bradshaw a brutal kick to the face before he was apprehended by the police.
Due to the secret arrangement between Jones and the Ohio Governor, Jones was released by the Cleveland police as soon as they got him safely away from Municipal Stadium. Turkey Jones has lived in a Browns-owned mansion in Shaker Heights ever since, and he draws a secret pension of $1,000,000 per year that is paid for by the Cleveland City Council.
You may find very different versions of this story in other places like ESPN, NFL.com, Google, Wikipedia, etc. This is due to the Cleveland Browns’ propaganda machine successfully revising all written (and video) accounts of the incident. But we here at Steelers Today remember the true story.
#2 – Joe “Turkey” Jones
YouTube removed the video of the play that I had here. But trust me when I tell you that it was the dirtiest play in NFL history. Curse you, Turkey Jones!!!!!!
#3 – Joe “Turkey” Jones
See #1 & #2.
#4 – Joe “Turkey” Jones
Did I mention that after kicking Bradshaw in the face, Jones proceeded to spit on him?
#5 – Joe “Turkey” Jones
A coward’s coward.
#6 – Kellen Winslow Jr.
Winslow is the antithesis of everything the Steelers stand for. He is arrogant, self-centered, self-aggrandizing, soft (though he pretends not to be), and he has never accomplished anything on the field. He has spent much of his career on the injured list. I believe one of those injuries occurred while being tackled by the Pittsburgh Steelers’ kicker (but I could be wrong). The others were thinly veiled excuses to avoid having to play the Steelers.
#7 – Braylon Edwards
See “#6-Kellen Winslow Jr.” Same guy, different jersey number.
#8 – Ozzie Newsome
Newsome was unstoppable as a player. That is reason enough to hate him. But now he is General Manager of the only team that Steelers fans hate more than the Cleveland Browns, the Baltimore Ravens. If it weren’t for Turkey Jones, Ozzie Newsome would be much higher on this list.
#9 – Eric Metcalf
To this day, I still don’t think a Steelers special teams player has ever tackled this guy. He wasn’t much of a running back, but he was a terror on kickoff and punt returns. We hate you Eric Metcalf!
#10 – Webster Slaughter
I’ll give Slaughter the greatest compliment I can ever give a Browns player; I wish he were a Steeler. Slaughter was good. Very good. When Slaughter was playing, he was the Browns player that I worried most about.
Addendum: #11 – Joshua Cribbs
I know that this article originally only included the top 10. However, based on what Joshua Cribbs has done against the Steelers in recent years, I have gone back and added his name to the list. We hate you, Joshua Cribbs!!!!!!!!
Brian Sipe, Michael Dean Perry, Bob Golic, Bernie Kosar, Paul Warfield
*Editor’s note: As with much of what we write at Steelers Today, this article is intended to be humorous. Several readers have informed us that they thought it was serious. Turkey Jones was not a convict who was hired to hurt Terry Bradshaw. He was simply a professional football player. While he did slam Terry Bradshaw on his head, he never kicked him in the face or spit on him. We apologize to Mr. Jones if anyone else didn’t realize that the article was a joke.