That's NOT so Browns: They get it right with Hue Jackson

Hue Jackson has plenty of work to do with the Browns, who have had seven seasons of at least 11 losses in the past eight. AP Photo/Frank Victores

The Cleveland Browns got this coaching thing right.

Imagine that.

The gang that can't throw, run or snap straight hired a credible, experienced, winning, successful coordinator -- with a year of head-coaching experience -- to be their new coach.

If when this search started the team could have promised they'd wind up with Hue Jackson as the coach, almost all the fans, media and players would have been supportive.

Jackson has to coach, he has to win and he has to communicate in a Cleveland environment that has become negative -- with seven seasons of at least 11 losses in the past eight.

But Jackson gives the city new hope as he moves from Cincinnati Bengals coordinator to Browns coach.

He wants to coach the Browns. He wants to work in the unique structure set up by Jimmy Haslam. He wants to be in Cleveland. To the point that he accepted the job and decided against boarding a plane to interview with the New York Giants.

Credit owners Jimmy and Dee Haslam. They made the aggressive move to keep him off that plane and convinced Jackson that Cleveland is the right place for him. They didn't give him a chance to hear from a respected franchise like the Giants.

They brought him to a franchise that most thought would be a tough sell because of all the instability that has surrounded the team the past few years.

Jackson looked past it, no doubt because the Haslams and Sashi Brown and Paul DePodesta helped him look past it. Jimmy Haslam even stayed back from the NFL's special meeting in Houston that decided the Rams would move to Los Angeles to meet with Jackson a second time.

That speaks loudly to how much Haslam wanted Jackson.

When the team's search started and skepticism reigned, I asked a Browns official: Would this team really be open to a strong-minded, forceful coach? Like Hue Jackson?

Yes, I was assured.

The proof is in the hire.

That a strong-minded coach is willing to step into the unique front-office structure that Haslam has created speaks to the comfort level Jackson felt in taking the job.

This is not a sixth option as a coach. This is a guy who worked wonders with Andy Dalton, who earned respect from players wherever he worked and who wasn't afraid to challenge players directly and forcefully. He is an offensive mind who understands quarterbacks and formations and play calling. In this era, that matters. A lot.

A certain amount of caution is in order. The Browns have won many hirings and news conferences over the years -- while they have lost on the field.

There's a lot of ground to cover and losing to erase.

The team lacks playmakers. It needs a quarterback. It needs to build a winning culture. That will take time.

But the Browns ... the Cleveland Browns ... the NFL's ultimate no-respect team ... got this right.