10 Most Controversial Cleveland Sports Stars Of All Time

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6. Andre Rison

To some, Andre Rison is the free agent that forced Art Modell’s move to Baltimore.

Modell famously took out a loan out to sign Rison, who looked to be on track to become an elite pass catcher during his early career with the Atlanta Falcons. Rison’s signing was widely applauded by Cleveland fans because he was only the fifth receiver in NFL history to score 60 touchdowns in his first six seasons.

With the Browns coming off a playoff appearance in 1994, Rison figured to be a player that could help the Browns get over the hump.

He didn’t.

In four of Rison’s first year seasons, he had double-digit touchdown totals. He came to Cleveland, and that streak snapped. The Michigan State product never produced that type of scoring output again.

Rison’s signing gave an already frustrated Modell another reason to be aggravated with his financial situation. The owner saw the Indians and Cavs getting new venues from the city, and he wanted to get a piece for himself.

And he did. In Baltimore.

In his one season with the Browns, fans quickly became disenchanted with his play, and his attitude, and Rison’s party words with the community only drove a further wedge between the two.

During a late-season game against the Packers, Rison was heavily booed in Cleveland Stadium. At the time, the fans knew about the move, and were looking to take their frustration out on an easy target.

Following the game, Rison responded:  “We didn’t make the [expletive] move. So, for all the booers, [expletive] you too. I’ll be glad when we get to Baltimore, if that’s the case. We don’t have any home-field advantage. I’ve never been booed at home. Baltimore’s our home. Baltimore, here we come.”

Bison didn’t make the journey to the Ravens, as he joined the Jaguars following the 1995 season. That stay was short-lived, though, as Rison gave Brett Favre a helping hand during the Packers’ 1996 championship run.

Next: Josh Gordon