Things I’ve Learned
by Terry Pluto and hundreds of Browns fans
Gray & Company, Publishers
This book is full of information that even longtime Cleveland Browns fans may not have known.
When the Browns drafted the man who would become the greatest football player of all time — fullback Jim Brown — the National Football League draft took place on the day after the ninth game of a 12-game season. Today, it occurs months after the season ends.
That year, 1956, ties were not broken by methods used today, like strength of schedule or record against common opponents. They simply flipped a coin.
The Browns, who were tied with two other teams with a 3-6 record, lost two coin flips. Coach Paul Brown had hoped to draft a quarterback, but the top choices were gone, so he “settled” for Jim Brown.
Amazingly, five players were picked before him.
Jim Brown was indestructible, never missing a game — or even a practice — in his remarkable nine-year NFL career.
According to Pluto, former Browns offensive lineman John Wooten insists that Jim Brown played the entire 1962 season with a broken left wrist. Brown was his roommate, and Wooten said he had to tie Brown’s shoe laces because Brown couldn’t use his left hand.
— Mike Lesko,