Years ago, the day after Major League Baseball's All-Star game was widely recognized as the slowest day in sports. All four major American sports leagues are idle. But after the last decade, ESPN and its ESPY Awards show has actually made this day relevant in the world of sports.
Today at ClevelandBrowns.com we decided to come up with our own version of the ESPY's – with our focus exclusively on the Browns.
Best celebration: After he heard his name called with the 12th overall pick, Danny Shelton walked to the stage and lifted NFL commissioner Roger Goodell off the ground with a hearty bear hug.
Best homecoming: Donte Whitner. The safety secured his third straight Pro Bowl appearance by leading the Browns with 106 tackles and providing tremendous leadership in the locker room.
Best idea: Defensive coordinator Jim O'Neil rewarded dog collars and tags in meetings for distinct defensive plays – ala Buckeyes on the helmets for Ohio State players.
Best swing: Second-year quarterback Johnny Manziel, who was drafted by the San Diego Padres shortly after the Browns picked him in the 2014 NFL Draft, won the home run derby at Joe Haden's celebrity softball game.
Best radio call: It's hard to find one better than Jim Donovan's description of this Isaiah Crowell touchdown scamper against the Falcons.
Best win: Browns 24, Bengals 3. Cleveland steamrolled its Ohio rivals on Thursday Night Football to boost its record to 6-4 and sit atop the AFC North division in November.
Best unlikely clutch performance: Tight end Gary Barnidge against the Saints. All four of his catches came on third- or fourth-down, while Pro Bowler Jairus Byrd was covering him. The Browns went on to stun New Orleans, 26-24.
Best Mike Pettine quote: "There's a phrase for almost winning – it's called losing."
Best moment: Staff sergeant Anthony Wagner, who had been stationed in Afghanistan for nine months, surprised his family in the best way when he reunited with them during the Browns' December game against the Bengals at FirstEnergy Stadium.
Best comeback: The Browns rallied from 25 points to stun the Titans in Nashville, recording an NFL record for a comeback victory on the road.
Gutsiest performance: In a Week 17 contest against the Ravens, Haden had to receive fluids before the game through an IV while he dealt with the flu. The Pro Bowl cornerback told ClevelandBrowns.com he played in the game to show younger teammates the type of effort that is expected in Cleveland.
*Best free-agent signing: *Three months after the opening of free agency, the Browns landed the biggest steal of the NFL offseason when they signed 9-year-old Dylan Sutcliffe. Sutcliffe, who was diagnosed with ataxia telangiectasia (A-T), joined the Browns for OTAs and went through a memorable, whirlwind day in Berea.