Cleveland Browns through the eyes of Bob Wylie
Former Cleveland Browns offensive line coach — and ‘Hard Knocks’ star — Bob Wylie appeared as a guest on ESPN’s ‘Get Up!’ and shared his feelings on the team
They say that once someone’s gotten a taste of the limelight, the allure of fame incessantly pulls at their soul until their pangs to return to the center of attention are finally satisfied.
Well, they don’t say that exactly, but I do (it sounded pretty good, right?).
For the first time since his departure from the shores of Lake Erie, former Cleveland Browns offensive line coach Bob Wylie has made national headlines. On Wednesday, Wylie appeared as a guest on ESPN’s ‘Get Up!’ to give insight into the Browns, arguably the most hyped team of any in the NFL heading into the 2019 season.
More from Dawg Pound Daily
- How the Browns could maximize Nick Chubb in 2023
- Can Deshaun Watson get to Patrick Mahomes level for Cleveland Browns?
- 3 Cleveland Browns who should see an expanded role in 2023 and 1 who should not
- Is Marcus Davenport on the Browns radar in 2023?
- 5 Free agents from Super Bowl LVII Cleveland Browns should target
And in doing so, the wily (had to do it) free agent coach shed some light on the potential of quite possibly the most anticipated year of football in the history of Northeast Ohio.
Back in January, the 68-year-old was let go by Cleveland shortly after Freddie Kitchens was named the 17th head coach in franchise history. Prior to the organization’s decision to move in a different direction though, Wylie had become a bit of a beloved figure in the eyes of Browns fans, thanks in large part to the dramatic documentary series ‘Hard Knocks’ which chronicled training camp with the Cleveland Browns in 2018.
Wylie’s unique take on life definitely left an impression on viewers, from his unexpected-yet-effective World War II analogy on why extensive stretching in athletics is unnecessary (“you think they were worried when they were runnin’ across Normandy about *expletive* stretchin’?!”) to the way his protruding gut jiggled every time he uttered the phrase “Set hut!” during a drill.
At the tail end of the 2018 campaign, Wylie received attention once more, but this time, in response to some bad news. As the Browns prepared for their final home game of the year against the Cincinnati Bengals, Wylie broke his ankle and found himself being taken to University Hospital and ultimately undergoing surgery to repair the ankle.
Weeks later, the season was over, the Browns had fallen short of the postseason, and Wylie was sent away during the regime change. Nearly seven months after that, after having gone through the offseason without signing a contract to coach anywhere within the football ranks (in addition to the NFL, he’s also got time in college football and even the Canadian Football League under his belt), Bob Wylie is back in the spotlight.
He made a plethora of intriguing comments during his session live in-studio on ‘Get Up!’, but the most tantalizing of them came via a story about the night in 2018 when rookie Baker Mayfield came into a regular-season game for the first time, against the Jets at home on Thursday Night Football in Week 3.
In said story, Wylie claims that Browns starting offensive lineman Joel Bitonio came back to the sideline laughing following Mayfield’s first series.
When Wylie asked him why he was laughing, he replied with this:
Not only was that Thursday Night game the point at which Browns fans were sold on Mayfield and decided to go all-in on him—apparently, but that’s also when his blockers on the o-line did as well.
Additionally, Wylie isn’t quite ready to crown his former squad as the presumptive champion. In fact, he’s not even predicting them to move up in the AFC North pecking order from last year, slating them in his third-place slot. ESPN’s Dianna Russini talked about Wylie’s reasoning behind placing both the Ravens and Steelers ahead of the Browns in his divisional preview list:
So while the book is still out on what to expect from the Browns in 2019, the same can’t be said about Bob Wylie. Whether he’s employed by a football team or sits this season out, Wylie will still bring that old school mentality of calling it as he sees it to every task he approaches in life.
And as for the rest of the coaches in the NFL?
Well, perhaps they would be wise to take a lesson or two from the football lifer.
After all—who else in the history of the game has been able to so easily inspire people simply by moving his stomach?