September 20, 2014

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Hall of Famer Jim Brown reconnects with Browns, wants to be part of organization

AVON — Jim Brown was back with the Browns this morning after a two-year absence.

Brown, a Hall of Famer and the team’s all-time leading rusher, attended an alumni golf outing at Avon Oaks Country Club. He spoke with reporters for about a half-hour before teeing off.

“I am forever a Cleveland Brown,” he said.

Brown has been estranged from the organization since president Mike Holmgren tried to reduce his role as adviser to owner Randy Lerner. Brown said he felt disrespected and didn’t attend his induction into the team’s ring of honor in 2010.

Brown reiterated that he’s in town to support Ernie Green, his former fullback who will be inducted into the Cleveland Browns Legends on Sunday at halftime of the Bills game. But Brown will use the time in town to meet with soon-to-be owner Jimmy Haslam. Holmgren has also reached out and Brown is willing to talk.

“I’m looking forward to sitting down with him,” Brown said.

He would like to return to a role within the organization.

“I miss being around,” he said.

On draft day, Brown called rookie running back Trent Richardson “ordinary.” He said part of that was to motivate Richardson and added he was impressed by Richardson’s two-touchdown performance Sunday against Cincinnati.

“I saw a flash of the talent and I loved it,” Brown said.

They will meet Sunday before the game.

Brown called Lerner “a good guy,” but said he didn’t think he ever wanted to own the team. He also didn’t approve of how Lerner handled his reduction in role. Brown said his contract stated he only reported to Lerner, yet it was Holmgren who met with him to discuss a change.

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