The Cleveland Browns have had some great players in their history but not all of them have gotten their deserved credit and have been undervalued
We all seek to be valued by others. It’s part of being human. When you’re at work, it’s always nice to be seen and heard and for others to take notice of your efforts. The same can be said for those working football players we see on Sundays. Your favorite team, the Cleveland Browns have had many players over their history be acknowledged for their efforts.
Players like Hall of Famers Jim Brown and Otto Graham have obviously had individual moments that have earned them much praise. There are, however, many past Browns players that haven’t been given their rightful shoutout.
While Cleveland fans may value their time and efforts, many outside of the dawg pound aren’t giving these players their much-deserved respect. Several of these former players are also overdue for a place in the NFL Hall of Fame.
Let’s begin by looking at the first two most unappreciated Cleveland players.
Most undervalued Cleveland Browns all-time
Frank Ryan, QB, 1963-1968
He’s the 1964 NFL Championship-winning quarterback. He played for the Browns from 1962-1968 and finished with a record of 55-22. These are all impressive accomplishments but yet Frank Ryan doesn’t get talked about much when you discuss past Browns quarterbacks.
He also was a scholar in the classroom as he earned a doctorate in mathematics while attending Rice University. All that knowledge led to his success on the football field.
All Ryan did was win ballgames. From 1963 through the 1967 season Ryan led the Browns to winning seasons in each campaign — and they made it to three championship games. They won the 1964 game but lost both the 1966 game and 1968 title game. So, while they did win a lot, they couldn’t always win the title.
Regardless, he helped maintain the success of the franchise during the 1960s. He finished his time in Cleveland throwing for 13,361 yards and 134 touchdowns.
Gary Collins, WR, P, 1962-1971
Gary Collins, the versatile wide receiver and punter for the Browns, is best known for his outstanding performance in the 1964 NFL Championship game where he caught five passes for 130 yards— including three touchdowns in the second half that led to the victory over the Baltimore Colts.
He had several other outstanding seasons as a wide receiver and was a solid punter as well. He was a two-time Pro Bowler and had one All-Pro season. He caught 331 passes for 5,299 yards and scored 70 touchdowns in his career.
Those are all impressive numbers and yet he isn’t an NFL Hall of Famer and should be. Fans of the Browns recognize Collins’s value to those great teams he played in in the 1960s, but the rest of the NFL seems to have forgotten about him which is a shame.