No regrets: Christian Kirksey not backing down from playoff tweet

Linebacker believes 2018 is the year Browns finally turn it around

Daryl Ruiter
July 27, 2018 - 2:05 pm
Fans greet Cleveland Browns linebacker Christian Kirksey (58) during training camp at the Cleveland Browns Training Complex.

Ken Blaze-USA TODAY Sports

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Berea, OH (92.3 The Fan) – Christian Kirksey isn’t backing down.

He believes the Cleveland Browns will go from 0-16 in 2017 to the playoffs this year.

In June Kirksey raised eyebrows and even caused eyes to roll when he tweeted his belief the Browns would be the turnaround story in the NFL this year.

“I was very confident in that tweet and I stick to it,” Kirksey said Friday. “I truly believe that.”

But why?

“I’ve been here for going on five years and this team that we have together right now is one of the better units that I’ve been around,” Kirksey said. “You just see the type of guys that’s [been> added on to the team, the draft picks ad all of that, you know its just a different feel.”

“I think the coaching staff they got put together, the general manager, everyone is on the same page.”  

The Browns currently have the league's longest playoff drought – 15 seasons – and they've finished with a winning record just twice in 19 years since returning to the NFL in 1999 while losing 10 or more games 15 times. 

Kirksey, a 2014 third-round draft pick, has suffered through an 11–53 stretch since being drafted. Four of those wins have come over the last 3 seasons combined, but an offseason roster overhaul by general manager John Dorsey has Kirksey thinking big. 

"I’m a confident guy – confident in my teammates and my brothers. I don’t regret that tweet at all,” Kirksey said.

As for the negative reaction from some, Kirksey isn't losing any sleep over it.

“I’m not too much worried about people’s opinions. I know what this team has and I know how hard we’re working," Kirksey said. "People can say ‘Oh, man, why did he make that tweet?’ or “They haven’t won a game.” It’s my tweet and my page. I’m going to say what I feel. I really feel this team is heading in the right direction.”

It's not the first time Kirksey went out on a limb.

After the Browns fell to 0-9 in 2016, Kirksey declared the team would not go 0-16. It worked out. That year.

“I guaranteed we wouldn’t go 0-16. We were 1-15 that year. I was right," Kirksey said. "I didn’t make this guarantee to match that one, but when I really feel something, I’m going to say it. I’m confident in these guys. I’m a firm believer in if I put it out there, it begins to exist. I know a lot of people will say, ‘You haven’t won a game, this and that.’ If we keep that mindset then we’re not going to win a game. You have to have that mindset where you’re going to compete. You’re going to win. As a competitor, that’s the attitude you have to have. I really believe we’re destined to win a lot of games.”