Dear Steeler Fan,
You've had a really good time at my expense in the decade that just ended.
And why shouldn't you have?
Your team has been one of the best, mentioned in the same breath with the Indianapolis Colts and the New England Patriots for decade's best team.
My team? The Browns?
Mentioned with Detroit for one of the decade's worst teams.
The only thing that saved Cleveland from being 100% inept in the 2000's was the lone playoff appearance.
That same playoff appearance that your team dismissed mine from.
I've heard all the jokes. I've heard all the comments. I could even read the half grin that was on Steeler fans faces most every Monday as my official welcome to Steeler/Browns smack talk for the week.
Comment after comment after comment after comment after comment would assault me week over week.
"How about them Browns last night?"
"Did you see what they did? Man, your team (expletive deleted by editor)"
"How many in a row is that for Pittsburgh?"
"How do you keep a Cleveland Brown out of your backyard? Erect a goal post!"
If I've heard 1 of these things in the last decade, Steeler fan, I've heard 10,000. I think collectively you've given me about 1,000 (expletive deleted by editor) comments per year gleefully describing how your team is great and mine is, well (expletive deleted by editor).
It's a new decade, Steeler fan. Let me start YOU out with a welcome to the 2010's.
Your team, the defending champs, they're missing the playoffs.
They're not going to the postseason for a number of factors but what really did them in was, what?
A loss to the 1-11 Browns on National TV.
Let me repeat that slowly, only so that I can savor the words.
The Pittsburgh Steelers are going to miss the playoffs and a chance to defend their Super Bowl title because the 1-11 Browns punked them on national TV.
It wasn't a fluke win either. If you have forgotten (or are trying to block out the game), the Browns beat Pittsburgh in all 3 phases of the game. It wasn't the bounce of a ball or a refs call that did it.
No, the Browns, for one night out muscled and out hustled the champs.
That's why, like Cleveland, the Steelers are staying home for the playoffs.
Am I excited over the Browns season?
As you notice, I didn't even (until now) mention their 4th straight win today.
Because the Browns are ending the year at 5-11.
Out of the playoffs.
But as pathetic as this putrid Browns season has been, I can go into the offseason knowing that I'm safe from seeing the Terrible Towels (and associated comments) dropped on me in a meaningful game until next September, thanks to what my favorite team did to your favorite team 4 weeks back.
Maybe as we share some pain at the end of the season you'll think twice before dropping smack on me.
Enjoy the Steeler free playoffs.
I know I will.
Fan View: Dear Steeler Fan...
Dear Steeler Fan,