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Sorry, but Art Modell has never belonged in Canton | READER COMMENTARY

Baltimore Ravens owner Art Modell and his wife Pat hold hands as they watch the Baltimore Ravens take on the Oakland Raiders at Memorial Stadium in Baltimore for the Ravens home opener, Sept, 1, 1996. The Ravens beat the Raiders, 19-14.
Baltimore Ravens owner Art Modell and his wife Pat hold hands as they watch the Baltimore Ravens take on the Oakland Raiders at Memorial Stadium in Baltimore for the Ravens home opener, Sept, 1, 1996. The Ravens beat the Raiders, 19-14.(Lisa Helfert, Associated Press)

As owner of the Cleveland Browns, Art Modell did to Cleveland what Robert Irsay did to Baltimore in 1984 by moving the Colts. The owner of one of the most storied franchises in the National Football League moved the Browns unceremoniously from Cleveland to Baltimore in 1996. This was during a period when the Browns still had a rabid fan base and were arguably the heart and soul of the city of Cleveland (much as the Colts were to Baltimore).

Additionally, Mr Modell, as owner of the Browns, fired Paul Brown, one of the most successful and visionary coaches in the history of the NFL. Moreover, Mr. Modell’s mishandling of a training camp situation involving Jim Brown led to the great Cleveland running back abruptly retiring prematurely. Jim Brown is still considered by many pundits to be the greatest player in the history of the NFL.

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In short, I don’t feel as though Art Modell belongs in the Pro Football Hall of Fame (“Art Modell, Ravens’ original owner, falls short of Hall of Fame; Baltimore native George Young selected,” Jan. 15). If anything, he has done more harm than good.

Charles Chambers, Middle River

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