“No, it is not about quitting. I hope people do not take that the wrong way. When I said, ‘I don’t think any other coach would do that job,’ I am not trying to sound arrogant, flippant or anything like that,” Jackson told reporters Sunday, following the Browns’ 28-24 loss to the Pittsburgh Steelers.
“I just think these situations are hard when you don’t win. When you are doing everything you can to win and it does not happen that way, I think those situations are hard. I don’t think the average person could go through that. That is what I meant by that. I think that is a tough situation to be in. At the same time, I am grateful and thankful that I do have enough strength, courage and fight and have enough support – I think that is the biggest thing to me, and I am being very honest with you, support from fans, support from the people in our building to get through this so we can get on the other side.”
Jackson, 52, is 9-39 overall as an NFL head coach. He went 8-8 with the Raiders in 2011, his first season as a head coach, before joining the Browns in 2016.
The Browns had the worst offense in football this season, in terms of points scored. They allowed the second-most points on defense. The Browns have had the worst point differential in football for three consecutive seasons.
Browns owner Jimmy Haslam met with reporters on Sunday, confirming that Jackson will be back in 2018.
“If you go back two years ago, I think Hue was one of the hottest assistant coaches out there. Right?” Haslam told reporters. “And I don’t think Hue’s lost his magic on how to call plays or how to run an offense or how to coach a team.”
“It’s our job – John and his group – to get him the players to do so. OK? And I’m not saying this is going to be easy, but I’m confident we’ll do this. We do not give up easily. We’re not going to give up. Is it disappointing? Hell, yeah, it’s disappointing. Is it discouraging? To a certain point. But we’re going to get this done.”
Haslam also said that Jackson could up being a “hero” for Browns fans.
“We have the best fans in the NFL, and when we win, Hue Jackson will be their hero,” Haslam said. “I’m convinced of that. It’s all about winning and losing. And until we start winning, we’re going to catch a lot of grief, and we deserve it.”
The Browns have the No. 1 and No. 4 pick in the first round of the 2018 NFL Draft.